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How To Be A Great Sports Mom

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Whether you’re the mother of a soccer, football, baseball, volleyball, or lacrosse player (no disrespect to the dozens of other sports that children are apt to play), there’s a certain art to being a great sports mom. You want to be a supportive, proud parent who isn’t overbearing or embarrassing to her child.

grandpa, grandma, grandson and granddaughter playing baseball at a park with title text reading 10 Ways to be a Better Sports Mom

You have to walk the fine line between sitting on the sideline ignorant of the game and consequently, mute and being too educated about the game, coaching your child as well as his or her teammates, not always in conjunction with the actual coach’s guidance.

To help you navigate the exciting, albeit sometimes confusing, land of sports spectatorship, I’m going to share some Dos and Don’ts I’ve learned throughout the years (many of them through trial and error). It IS possible to be a great sports mom with a few simple parenting tricks.

Dress the Part

DO: Wear team colors.

DO NOT: Match anything other than your clothes to the team colors (e.g. no face paint, hair coloring, or body paint).

Be a Cheerleader

DO: Shout occasional encouragement (e.g. “Nice kick!” “Good pass!” or “Great hustle!”).

DO NOT: Attempt to coach your child (unless you are the actual team coach), disparage any player or official, or single out your child for something ordinary making it sound like he or she just landed on the moon (e.g. “Woohoo Amanda! You were totally ready to stop the ball if it came your way!”).

Support the WHOLE Team

DO: Learn the other players’ names and use it when shouting encouragement (as suggested above).

DO NOT: Create your own nicknames for players or use nicknames that your child has used for teammates UNLESS other spectators, including the child’s parents, are using the nickname.


DO: Tell your child after the game that you enjoyed watching him or her play and that you are proud of how much effort he or she put into the game (if that is true).

DO NOT: Criticize things your child did or didn’t do during the game.

Stay Positive

DO: Be enthusiastic about the game.

DO NOT: Turn negative when things aren’t going well on the field/court. Instead, try to stay positive and help keep the team’s morale up.

Have Your Kid’s Back

DO: Advocate for your child if you feel the coach isn’t providing the right opportunities or training for your child.

DO NOT: Publicly criticize the coach in front of others. Save your disagreements and discussions for private conversations.

Be Social

DO: Talk to and get to know other parents so that the team parents can support the team as a group.

DO NOT: Strike up random conversations that are awkward and make it obvious that you are making conversation for the sake of conversation rather than from a genuine interest in getting to know them.

Do Your Part

DO: Chip in for your fair share of snack duty and volunteering.

DO NOT: Go overboard either by bringing a snack that is much healthier or much unhealthier than what the other parents bring or by volunteering for EVERYTHING and then criticizing others for not doing their share or acting like a martyr for taking on so much.

Get Comfortable

DO: Bring provisions to ensure you are comfortable at the game.

DO NOT: Set up the Taj Mahal which will only result in others gawking at you either in jealousy or disbelief.

These are all mistakes I have made or seen made at my kids’ various sporting events. Do you have any to add? If so, please share them in the comments.

a mother and daughter doing push-ups on the pavement with title text reading How To Be A Great Sports Mom

More Great Sports Mom Help

If you liked these tips, you might be interested in some of these other tricks to be a great sports mom.

Check out what I carry in my Sports Mom Bag of Essentials to make sure I have everything I need at my kids’ practices and sporting events.

a sports bag for a great sports mom and all the essentials that go in it like good, lotion, first aid supplies, drinks and wipes

And if you’ve ever questioned whether or not encouraging your kids to play sports is really in their best interest or not, find out Why I Make My Kids Play Sports.

a kid's legs near a football on a field with title text reading Why I Make My Kids Play Sports

Finally, if your kids are die-hard sports fanatics, check out this Gift Guide for Sports Fans to find gift ideas for birthdays, holidays and special events.

a collage of 12 different sports memorabilia items with title text reading Best Gifts for Sports Fans


4 thoughts on “How To Be A Great Sports Mom”

  1. Ha! What a fun post! I’m not quite at the “soccer mom” phase of life, but I’ll have to keep these in mind. We all get pumped up and proud of our kids huh? And some let OUR competitiveness show through.

  2. I loved this post! We have just entered the world of sports teams (our oldest is 5). I was surprised by a couple things: 1. how competitive a handful of parents were and 2. how ridiculously unhealthy the snacks were. While we try to make healthy choices for our family, we do understand that not everyone makes those choices. However, even my husband (who thinks sometimes I lean a little too far into “healthy”) was displeased with the snacks. If we are signing up for these sports teams, we obviously believe in fun fitness. I don’t see how loading kids down with Capri Suns, Cheetos, Oreos, and gummy snacks after running for an hour is a good choice! So that was a bummer. As for the competitive parents, it was very surprising to hear parents criticizing their kids after a game when score wasn’t even kept (the 5-year old team is just for fun). I can only imagine it gets more interesting as our kids get older and the sports do become competitive!


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