27 answers

A Question for Peewee Football Moms?

My 9yo is playing tackle football for the first time this year he has played flag football through the Upwards program and through a City program in the past but as always wanted to play tackle so we finally let him. I realize that it is football and the drills and practices are alot rougher, however, I do not feel it necessary for the coach to be so cruel and call the 3rd and 4th grade boys sissys and girls because they are not running as fast or hitting as hard as he thinks they should! He also feels they need punishment for not winning a game because he says they didn't listen to what he tells them and makes them do suicides after playing an hour or more game and usually practicing an hour before the game. I guess my question is this normal for coaches at this age or did we just get a rotten coach? My guy really doesn't want to play football anymore because all this guy does is scream and cut them down which is sad b/c he is built for it. Thanks

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My son has been playing since he was 5yrs old and he is now 13. I would not keep him on that team. Ask to switch teams. I can't stand to hear someone yelling at the players. That just gets under my skin. Good luck.

E.

if the coach sets up a play and it fails it's his fault. if the coach sets up a play and it fails bc the kids didn't execute it's their fault, but not the end of the world!! I would pull my kid out so fast his head would spin!

You have already received great advice! I just wanted to add that if all parents would pull their kids off teams with coaches like this then it would stop. Also...I would talk to the head of whatever association this team is with and explain to them what is going on.

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Hi R.,
I am an assistant football coach for my son's 9-yr old tackle football team and I have to say that, apparently, your son's coach is caught up in his own ego, rather than helping these boys grow and mature, learn teamwork and learn the game. Unfortunately, we see this way too often at this age. You might try to visit with with the coach and get his response to your concerns. If you fail to get anywhere with the coach, or his assistants, I would petition the commissioner of the league to allow you to change teams.
I am not a "rookie" coach either - having been head coach of my two older sons (from a previous marriage) to the junior high level (they both went on to be all-district high school linebackers...so you know they had the necessary intensity) but not once did I do or say anything that might break their spirit.
As for my 9-year old's team, we do have conditioning, and do expect them to listen, but there's never any "negative motivation". We are much less about the coaches, and much more about the boys...and if you receive any feedback indicating that this "softer" approach is not reality, I might mention that we were undefeated champions of the Plano Football League last year, and undefeated champions of the Prestonwood Sports League the year before (both tackle leagues).
If you would like to visit about this, I would be happy to spend some time on the phone with you.
God bless,
Bob Sweeney
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1 mom found this helpful

My son isn't in tackle yet, but if I was uncomfortable with the way the coach was running things and/or if it took the fun out of the game for my son, I think I'd speak to the coach or get on another team. I think our coach has a good balance of dicipline and positive reinforcement. For instance, the other day he ran a drill between offense and defense. If the offense got past the defense, the defense did 10 pushups. It was more of a way to combine conditioning with the added since of making the boys try really hard so they didn't have to do push ups. I know he's made people that are late run to the fence and back...again, it's 2 fold - "punishment" for being late, and a quick warm up so they don't get hurt once they start practicing. I definately think I'd consider talking to the coach and/or switching teams, as well as talking to the president of the cub that he's doing football through to make sure he doesn't get to coach anymore. If you are looking for an outside opinion, then maybe call the president of the club, state your concerns, and ask him to observe a practice.

if the coach sets up a play and it fails it's his fault. if the coach sets up a play and it fails bc the kids didn't execute it's their fault, but not the end of the world!! I would pull my kid out so fast his head would spin!

Pesonally, I don't care if it's normal, it's not right. That teaches kids so many bad habits and attitudes I would absolutely rip my kid off of that team. What I would tell your son since he isn't really liking football now that he has such a horrible mean coach is, "Why don't we just go back to flag football since it was more fun. All of this yelling just ruins the fun and it's so unneccesary that we ought to just go back to flag football so that you can have more fun playing!" See what he says. If he says he wants to keep playing then you can let him if you want. I think I would let him know however if you let him stay that the stuff that coach is saying is not true, not nice, and that the coach is probably just doing it because he doesn't know how to behave correctly. I think that I would put a complaint into the league about the coach too, mostly for the namecalling. There is not situaion in which it is okay to call 4th grade boys sissies and girls just because they aren't running fast enough or something. Boys are very delicate about their masulinity and self esteem right now and that can really cause problems. I think that I would be at every practice and every game though to make sure he is not physically worked too hard or chewed out by the coach too bad. Make sure they get rest breaks and water breaks, and most importantly, praise him after each practice and each games, 100 compliments a day to undo the mean things the coach is saying, you need to overkill with compliments to outweigh that terrible coach. Don't you feel sorry for that coach's kid?

Keep in mind that the "coach" is just another father who may or may not have a good temperment for coaching. My husband coached baseball for years and did it because he got sick of the verbally abusive coaches! Now my son-in-law is doing the same thing. Our grandson played football for 2 seasons under 2 abusive coaches. The last one actually slapped his own son right on the field when he missed a play. The ref didn't throw him out of the game, but should have. You signed your son up to be on a team. I feel he should stay on the team until the finish. Perhaps you and some of the other parents can talk as a group to this guy and get somewhere, but it's your call. But your son will face other coaches and some teachers that are not fair, so this can be a good learning experience. It certainly was for our grandson. Good luck.

No this is not normal!! My husband and I started our own youth organization last year because of things like that. Our outlook is that we are there to encourage and support our kids. I have been coaching pee wee cheerleading for 13 years and he has been coaching football for about 9 years and that is unacceptable within our group. I am not surprised that your son no longer wants to play football because i wouldn't either. However, don't let this one coach discourage you from allowing your son to try another team because there are some very good coaches out there that are concerned about building a child's confidence while teaching the game of football. I hope that helps some.

I have to agree with the person below - that although it may be "normal" and acceptable to many????!! It is NOT okay for my child or any child to be treated that way - no matter how old they are - that is not positive coaching - you don't punish kids for not winning... you assess your coaching to see where you can do better. This does not encourage kids to work harder and do better - it makes them perform out of fear of punishment and they will learn to hate football. I don't care if we are in Texas where football is "king" - not okay and I wouldn't tolerate it!

You have already received great advice! I just wanted to add that if all parents would pull their kids off teams with coaches like this then it would stop. Also...I would talk to the head of whatever association this team is with and explain to them what is going on.

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