As a parent, you may have seen your fair share of kids starting new projects or ventures with loads of enthusiasm only to see them falter when it comes to sticking with it until completion. Sport is no exception. Even children who are doing well in a competitive sense often drop out for a variety of reasons.
The management team at Cosmo United Football Club in Singapore has compiled a list of causes as to why kids lose their passion for football and how to help foster new interest in the game.
The Sport Isn’t Fun Anymore
According to many studies of children and sport, the number one reason for quitting is kids feel they’re not having fun anymore. Sometimes it can be easy to forget that children are – just that – younger and less experienced. Therefore, they often have a shorter attention span, can be prone to mood swings, especially as they hit the hormonal highs and lows of puberty, and can be put off easily if they see a challenge as being too hard. Sometimes kids can take the game too seriously and put too much pressure on themselves to win. This is the job of both coaches and parents to help your children learn what it is to lose without too much disappointment and what it means to commit to your team.
Lack of Encouragement
OK, so we all know that sport is about competition and pushing our personal limits to meet new challenges but soccer, in particular, is also a team effort whereby every player contributes. It is vital that coaches and parents maintain encouragement for players, no matter their ability on the field. Children need to feel appreciated and their contributions must be recognised for them to develop an ongoing desire to play. Parents must also play their part and make time and effort to not only help their kids turn up for training, but to be seen on the side-lines at matches so their kids feel valued. Another thing to remember is that parents need to focus on the things the child did well, rather than judging their game skills or telling their kids what they could do better – especially right after a training session or match. It is scientifically proven that 70% of the children playing any sport stop because they say it’s not fun anymore. Part of this involves being worn out by their parents’ suggestions. Parents must learn to praise and not criticise because your kids already know if they have not played well.
Favouritism for Other Players
Another major reason why children stop playing soccer and other sports is they are constantly side-lined and given fewer chances to play due to a lack of ability compared to more skilful players in the team. Coaches must accept that winning at all cost will have plenty of losers, including team members drifting away from the sport and parents being frustrated that their little ones don’t get a fair go on the field. Rather than penalise poorer players, experienced coaches will take note of any flaws and address them in practise sessions. Drills and training can be aimed at improving their players’ skills overall. Coaches who can decipher the fine balance between favouritism for the better players while giving everyone a turn are likely to see the best results.
Fear of Failure
Making mistakes and not being good enough in either the eyes of the coach or their teammates are common reasons for giving up a sport. A good coach will communicate to the whole team that mistakes and losses are just a natural part of learning, while committing to regular training will help everyone improve their football skills.
Despite being full of energy and enthusiasm, children can only give so much before they wear out. Pushing your kids too hard or allowing them to do so themselves is not nurturing for their health. If you don’t take notice of the signs the game is all too much for your kids, they may have already lost interest by the time you realise it’s too late. Talk to your kids, keep the communication open with their coaches so you can determine when too much is too much.
If you want the best football training for your children in Singapore, contact Cosmo United Football Academy on +65 9821 3869 or emailWe also have school holiday soccer camps to help boost your children’s ball and boot skills. Check out our Website or visit us The CUFA Facebook Page