Friday, June 17, 2005

Frog Blogging

Friendly Frog coach Erin Harris directs warm-ups at last Tuesday night's match-up against the Lake Jeanette Lightning.

Swimmers and swim parents are a dedicated and polite group. This meet lasted nearly 5 hours, and was only one of 11 Community Swim Association meets that happen every Tuesday night in June. I worked this meet as a stroke and turn judge; in three years of doing this job, I have never been yelled at by a parent, coach, or athlete, though I've disqualified lots of swimmers.

CSA now has 2000+ swimmers participating every summer; this year, Olympic medalist Diana Munz will be visiting the CSA city championship.


Anonymous said...

Both my husband and son are/have been soccer refs. I wish I could say they've never been "yelled at by a parent." They've been followed to their cars, screeched at, called names, been vilified. I thought it was good exercise. Swimming sounds like it has less hyperbolic parents. Wonder why?

Brian said...

I'm interested in this phenomenon too. I umpired summer youth baseball when I was a varsity baseball player in high school and got yelled at numerous times. One coach even threatened to pull his field off the team for every game (ruining the experience for a dozen kids) during an argument. Now as a parent I've coached soccer and t-ball (both sports in the 5-6 year old non-scoring, non-referee divisions). My soccer parents and the other soccer coaches were generally supportive and polite. Baseball is another story - the parents and other coaches are generally much more cut-throat and mean-spirited (which makes those parents and coaches who do get it even more enjoyable by comparison). I wonder if it's because these parents and coaches didn't grow up playing soccer, so they're not as emotionally invested in it and not living vicariously through their children as much with soccer as with baseball. Maybe the same factor is at work with swimming?

Anonymous said...

I've been watching on show on Bravo about kids, parents and sports. In my opinion, some of the parents are just nuts. There is an 8 year old who is in 4 different competitive sports, a 16 year old figure skater who seems to hate his family, an 8 year old football player who is practicing in ways that I've seen high school teams's crazy.

My father used to coach little league. He would bring his team out for ice cream after most games - win or lose. Very low key. Of course he wanted them to win, but if they didn't it was no big deal. They're just kids. Kids need to be kids.