Was recently watching a documentary called “In Search For Greatness,” where they delved into the traits, characteristics and the upbringing of some of the greatest athletes the world has ever seen…
Wayne Gretzky, widely recognized as the greatest hockey player in the history of the sport, tells a story when he was 10 years old and his squad had just lost the championship game to a rival team.
On the ride home, Gretzky remembers his father telling him that although they lost to a better team… “Not one of those kids will ever play in the NHL.”
Gretzky’s Dad’s reasoning was that they played way too much of a structured game, and the kids would never truly fulfill their maximum potential because of it.
Sure enough and not surprising, not one of the kids that beat Gretzky’s team ever played in the NHL, but check this shit out…
FIVE, I repeat FIVE of the kids on Gretzky’s team did. 😯
It’s absolute insanity to think that a 10-year-old team could have 5 NHL players come off of it. How and why did this possibly happen, especially when the much better team had ZERO…
When we put kids into a box and force them to play a certain way with all sorts of restrictions, we may give them a better chance to win the game, but we are shackling their creative development.
The only way we truly foster a kids growth is by helping them push the envelope to figure out what they are capable of accomplishing… Yet, the only way this is done is by simply LETTING THEM PLAY.
All too often, we as parents, mentors and coaches think we need to prove our value by micromanaging our children… Sure, our intentions might be good, but the reality of the situation is that this over parenting/coaching often suppresses kids’ potential and many times will lead to burnout and possibly even complete and total rebellion.
Just like we as adults need autonomy, so do kids… When we take away their creative expression and sense of independence, it no longer becomes entertaining or fun for them. When it gets to this point, they are DONE and guess what?!?!?!
It’s not their fault… It’s ours.