Summer sports programs mean smiles for kids with potential sadness as well. A sports psychiatrist says if kids get bummed from making a bad play or losing a game it’s important not to sweep the situation under the rug. “The most important thing I think is to acknowledge their child’s feeling about what happened,” says Dr. Claudia Reardon of the UW School of Medicine and Public Health.
It’s also an opportunity to have a conversation about resilience. “The useful thing that I like to tell parents and the kids that I see, ‘remember you’re the kind of person who doesn’t give up easily,” she says.
Dr. Reardon also suggests citing the child’s favorite athletes who show determination in the face of failure.