The importance of finding a family balance when raising athletes
Published Friday, April 5, 2019 12:13PM EDT
The speaker series called ‘Hockey, Family and the Fine Art of Balancing Both’ was hosted by Cambrian College Foundation and the college’s physical fitness management program.
Hockey parents turned authors, Karl Subban and Angie Abdou, were invited to speak about their experiences raising athletes and finding family balance on and off the ice, but their message is applicable to all parents with kids in sports.
“We get sucked into this high drama of sport and there's pressure to get kids to specialize too young, which isn’t good for anybody. They end up either, they decide very young that they're not good because they’re not making the A teams, and so they quit because they decide they’re no good. Or they’re making those teams and there’s so much pressure that they quit because it’s no fun anymore. So, there's this mass exodus from the sport at 13 and we need to reign back in that pressure and remember that children and children.” said Abdou, author of Home Ice: Reflections of a Reluctant Hockey Mom.
Subban is a former Toronto school principal, father of five, including three NHL players.
“Coach less. I’m going to tell you. My wife, Maria, she always reminded me which dad my kids needed most. It was Karl The Dad, not Karl The Hockey Dad. So, there is a balance and what we did with our children is we spent a lot of time skating with them, instead of coaching them. So, spend more time doing things with them and that will inspire them to do it more.” said Subban, author of How We Did It.