Saturday, April 17, 2010

Lacrosse in full swing, US tops bad sportsmanship list

Dear Good Sports,

How are you? Here in the Good Sports house, Spring Sports are in full swing, and our book, The Kids' (and parents', too!) Book of Good Sportsmanship, is proving to be the little engine that could! That's been very great news, but it means I've been so busy that I have been very bad keeping up with posting here!

We had the younger Good Sport Daughter's lacrosse game today. It's the second one and it's amazing how the girls are really picking up the game this year in 5th and 6th grade. It was quite windy and chilly but we survived. (If you can believe it, it was 49 degrees but an ice cream truck kept circling the field. Not a single girl asked for ice cream!) Good Sport Dad is the coach and has been laboring over the rotation. He got an official jacket this year, complete with his name embroidered on the sleeve. We are still working on the team cheer. They're saying something -- but it's not quite clear what.

The older Good Sport daughter has been learning tennis over the winter and is excited to start playing outside for a change. The whole family has been going over to the Valley Forge Military Academy track to run (Dad & daughters) and walk (me).

But while all this nice, calm, happy stuff has been going on, I found out that there was a recent Reuter/Ipsos poll that bad behavior by parents at youth sporting events is more likely to occur in the United States than in any other country.


A quote by John Wright, senior vice president of Ipsos: It's ironic that the United States, which prides itself on being the most civilized country in the world, has the largest group of adults having witnessed abusive behavior at children's sports events. There is clearly a fine line between participatory enthusiasm and abuse and parents, as role models, have got to keep in mind and keep themselves in check for the sake of their children.

And, at the same time this week, we had the story out of a Phillies game that an abusive fan allegedly vomited on an off duty police officer and his young daughter.

So -- as we start to enjoy all our Spring sports, don't forget to remember what kind of behavior is acceptable -- and what isn't. (Then, maybe next year we might not top the list!)


P.S. We've started offering The Kids' (and parents', too!) Book of Good Sportsmanship as a fundraiser. If you're interested for your team or township, please email us for more information.