The Athlete: Parenting and Human Potential

Nothing makes a parent more proud than to watch their child successfully participate in an athletic event. It builds self-esteem in a child. It creates confidence and a sense of self-control.

Every child can be physically competent. Developing athleticism is the key to success. It is an educational process and yes, everyone can be physically educated.

For 45 years I’ve been working as a teacher and coach. I know what is possible. Everyone can be athletic

Enter Garret, 14 years old, chubby, unfocused and weak. He was locked into that soft-uncoordinated pattern that grabs more than half of our population.

When we look at an athlete we see someone in control of his body. The feet are key. If they can control their feet they can usually play. This kid had the duck-footed, awkward stance and forward body lean that characterizes a lot of the unathletic.

This is the type of child who plays soccer when he is little, maybe a little baseball, and then gives up sports by the time he is 13-14. They give up because they’ve had no initial success. Attitude becomes paired with awkwardness.

Most parents resign themselves to the idea that their child is just not an athlete.

It did not turn out that way for Garret. He, like most kids, had what it takes to be an athlete. He just did not know it.

His dad was not about to give up and I knew I could help.

He knew what my philosophy was regarding the development of a child. His dad, Mike, had seen me work with three of his older children. He knew I believed every child has hidden physical abilities.

You see, we are all blessed with the same physiology. Everyone has the same cardio-vascular and endocrine system. Everyone has a neurological and musculoskeletal system. Everybody will adapt to stress or stimulation.

We all have propensities but we also have potential. We have the potential to adapt to training. If we are willing to work everyone can make substantial changes in their body.

Mike knew my philosophy had worked for his other children. He also knew I create new adaptations.

The body has to be selectively stimulated. It is a progression that can be taught.

Each step is based upon the way the body reacts physiologically to outside stimuli: training.

He and I didn’t give up; we encouraged Garret and as Garrett began to adapt, his focus and his attitude were altered.

Success begets success. Once Garret began to change, he worked harder. Garret ended up a state placer in wrestling. He was one of the strongest kids I ever worked with.

He became a coordinated, strong, upright young man who was confident.

Everyone can cause their biological system to change. He did not start that way. It took work and patience.

Everything I present in these blogs is aimed at making maximum use of those biological systems. This is about maximizing your child’s potential. Hopefully you’ll follow me as I explain how this is possible.

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