As parents, we all want our young players to have a “positive attitude”, but what does that mean exactly? What does a positive attitude look like out on the basketball court?
Everyone has a positive attitude when things are going well. If a player has made their last four shots in a row or their team has a big lead it is easy to have a good attitude. What is the player’s attitude when their team is losing, the coach is yelling at them for something that isn’t their fault, or their teammates are hogging the ball? In these types of situations it is much more difficult to exhibit that good attitude.
Attitudes are contagious, both good and bad. What kind of attitude does your young player bring each day?
1. A positive attitude means giving that extra bit of effort in a drill that may not be the most fun.
2. A positive attitude means encouraging the team and your teammates even when things aren’t going well for you individually. Your attitude should remain the same if you’ve scored 20 points and hit the game winning shot or if you are 0 for 9 and the coach has just taken you out of the game.
3. A positive attitude means being coachable and doing what is asked even if you (or your parent) disagrees with a coach’s decision.
4. A positive attitude means the player is able to give their best effort under any circumstance no matter how challenging.
5. A positive attitude means the player can keep their concentration on what their job is despite distractions.
6. A positive attitude means playing to be a winner, not playing to be cool.
7. A positive attitude means not allowing a referee’s “bad” calls to impact how hard you play.
8. A positive attitude means accepting your role on the team and then working like crazy to expand that role in the future.
0. A positive attitude means touching the line during sprints (not almost touching it).
10. A positive attitude means being able to celebrate team success regardless of individual performance.
11. A positive attitude means not complaining no matter how unfair you may perceive things to be.
12. A positive attitude means complimenting a teammate after they do something to help the team.
13. A positive attitude means figuring out a way to rise and meet a challenge rather than backing down, walking away, or giving less than your best effort.
14. A positive attitude means being accountable. No coach likes excuses! Accept the responsibility you’ve been given and don’t blame teammates, parents, refs, or coaches.
15. A positive attitude means you are in control of you and how you react to adversity. You can’t control teammates, coaches, refs, fans, or your opponent, so don’t even try!
16. A positive attitude means being willing to learn and practice new skills while looking silly and making mistakes.
17. A positive attitude means being a role model for teammates in terms of poise and self-control.
18. A positive attitude means having good body language during games and practices. No moping, pouting, or shooting dirty looks across the floor at refs, teammates, or coaches.
19. A positive attitude means not fooling around during practice, but rather being prepared to offer a peak performance both mentally and physically.
Does your young player bring this type of positive attitude every day? Encourage them to “practice” having a good attitude. Developing a positive attitude is a skill that can be improved. Which of these descriptions of a positive attitude resonates most for you as the parent of a young basketball player?