top of page

Worried About your Child's Tennis Progression?

Updated: Jun 5

Do you find yourself anxious and stressed when your child is not behaving or performing as you expect in tennis? Let's examine some of the most common concerns and see how they may be affecting you and your child.

It's natural for parents to worry if their child:

  1. Isn't behaving according to expectations

  2. Seems inattentive during tennis coaching sessions

  3. Appears distracted and not fully engaged in playing tennis

  4. Isn't as competitive as desired

  5. Loses important or "easy" games

  6. Lacks confidence while playing tennis

  7. Struggles with the pressure of high-level tennis

  8. Feels tired, stressed, and disinterested in tennis

In addition, you may feel that the tennis coach isn't addressing your concerns appropriately, either being too strict or too lenient. However, it's important to remember that tennis coaches share the same goal as parents – to provide a positive tennis experience and help children reach their full potential.

Coaches focus on teaching teamwork, perseverance, hard work, and determination alongside tennis skills. They also help children learn to handle failure, bounce back, and move forward without unnecessary fuss.

It's worth noting that your concerns may be more reflective of your own experiences and anxieties than your child's. Let's take a moment to explore this further and understand how your own upbringing and self-perception might be influencing your approach to your child's tennis journey.

Young boy hits tennis ball against a wall in NSW
Starting tennis young in NSW

Ask yourself honestly:

  1. Were you frequently criticised as a child?

  2. Do you believe criticism had no negative impact on you?

  3. Do you struggle with receiving criticism yourself?

  4. Do you feel like you missed out on opportunities in life?

  5. Are you trying to shield your child from experiencing hardships like you did?

  6. Do you feel uncomfortable around authority figures, such as tennis coaches?

  7. Do you compare yourself to other parents and try to outperform them?

  8. Do you feel embarrassed when your child misbehaves?

  9. Are you disappointed when your child doesn't perform well?

  10. Do you and your partner have different opinions on discipline?

  11. Is this causing arguments between you two?

  12. Does this add to the stress of other relationship problems?

  13. Do you feel anxious in social gatherings or major competitions?

  14. Do you frequently experience stress and/or depression?

  15. Are you concerned about the financial strain tennis may impose?

Reflecting on these questions can help you recognise how your own experiences and anxieties might be influencing your interactions with your child.

Moreover, it's essential to understand that an anxious and stressed parent can negatively impact a child's tennis performance. When you are overly stressed or angry, your child becomes more anxious, consciously or unconsciously, leading to decreased focus and difficulty processing instructions from the coach. Your child becomes more attuned to your state of mind rather than the coach's guidance, hindering their tennis development.

It's crucial to address your anxieties and manage pressure effectively. Tennis provides an opportunity for children to learn how to handle stress, and as parents, it's essential to support them in this journey.

Consider the following steps:

  1. Identify your fears and concerns.

  2. Write down your worries, insecurities, and issues.

  3. Reevaluate what you've written, gaining perspective.

  4. Practice calming techniques such as meditation, Tai Chi, or yoga.

  5. Work on improving your relationship with your partner to reduce conflicts.

  6. Seek anger management tips if necessary.

By taking these steps, you can create a healthier tennis environment for your child and yourself, fostering enjoyment and growth without unnecessary pressure or distress.

Remember, your child's tennis experience should be about more than just performance. It should nurture their overall well-being, both on and off the court. Together with the tennis coach, you can contribute to your child's sense of safety, social development, physical and emotional well-being, and their ability to handle pressure.

Allow tennis to be a positive force in your child's life and embrace the journey together.

3 views0 comments
bottom of page