Wednesday, April 29, 2015


An article a year ago from The Washington Post deals with the topic of "helicopter parents"  --  parents who "hover" over the children working diligently to remove adversity and obstacles from their path, not allowing them to grow and mature. It is something that has become more relevant through the years.  One of the things that I firmly believe is that the two most important things that we as coaches should be teaching our student-athletes is the ability to communicate and to think.  And that process has become more difficult for those students who have parents do far too much of that for them. The article, written by Amy Joyce gives some specific examples but also data from some studies performed.  Here is an excerpt from that article:

A study published recently in the journal Education + Training found that there is an important line to draw between parental involvement and over-parenting. “While parental involvement might be the extra boost that students need to build their own confidence and abilities, over-parenting appears to do the converse in creating a sense that one cannot accomplish things socially or in general on one’s own,” wrote the authors, two professors from California State University Fresno. The authors of “Helicopter parents: An Examination of the Correlates of Over-parenting of College Students,” Jill C. Bradley-Geist and Julie B. Olson-Buchanan, go on to detail how over-parenting can actually ruin a child’s abilities to deal with the workplace.
Bradley-Geist and Olson-Buchanan, both management professors, surveyed more than 450 undergraduate students who were asked to “rate their level of self-efficacy, the frequency of parental involvement, how involved parents were in their daily lives and their response to certain workplace scenarios.”
The study showed that those college students with “helicopter parents” had a hard time believing in their own ability to accomplish goals. They were more dependent on others, had poor coping strategies and didn’t have soft skills, like responsibility and conscientiousness throughout college, the authors found.
You can read the entire article in its entirety here.