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Honoring the Game — Life is a Team Sport


“Honoring The Game,” is one of the most sacred of principles we teach for athletes, coaches, parents and leaders. It speaks to not only the reverence of the game but to the overall respect for the culture of the team. Coaches know honoring the game is critical to centering the values and behaviors of their players, especially in those times when things may not be going as planned.

Because life is a team sport, you as parents are finding yourselves stepping into the role of coach and the team you have to manage is your family unit. Learning to honor the game is uniquely valuable as we manage through this current predicament, but also as we look to the future there is an opportunity to reimagine together what youth sports can be.

Because we believe so much in this principle, now more than ever, we are making Honoring the Game: The Official's Role in Creating a Positive Youth Sports Culture, FREE TO EVERYONE this week.

Honoring The Game: ROOTS

The key tenets of this principle of honoring the game are represented by the acronym ROOTS, which stands for respecting Rules, Opponents, Officials, Teammates and Self. Roots are what hold a tree in place and roots are what hold your team in place. Each aspect is articulated below.

Honoring The Rules

The rules of a sport have been developed and modified for a reason. Rules keep the game fair, and they also keep athletes safe. It’s important not to try to work against the rules or bend them; respect the role they play in your sport. This is something that is relevant to athletes at any age and something you can start teaching your children at an early age. Right now as you manage your way through home life, you will find respect for the rules of the household are vitally important to maintaining a healthy routine.

Honoring The Officials

Officials are doing the best they can to enforce the rules and maintain a safe environment for play and there is never an excuse for disrespecting them, especially when you consider how important they are to the sport itself.

You can still have a game if you’re missing an assistant coach or even a star player, but without the official there is no game. Helping kids to honor the game by understanding and respecting the role of the official is a character development that will do them well as they become positive contributors to society as a whole.