TAKE 5 with USA Wrestling's Erin Tomeo
Youth sports provide a great avenue for your kids to build self-esteem and learn invaluable life lessons.
They also provide an opportunity for parents and coaches to teach the importance of good sportsmanship to youth athletes. Our kids look to their role models for guidance, and when adults and athletes have a win-at-all-costs mentality, it can tarnish the game and bring out the worst in everyone. Good sportsmanship matters.
In our exclusive TAKE 5 interview, Erin told us that she is impressed with the currentstate of sportsmanship in wrestling, which she calls “alive and well…as it has always been.” Erin believes the international movement to preserve Olympic wrestling has only added to this already strong sense of sportsmanship.
“The worldwide movement to save wrestling in the Olympic Games united the world, and has helped to elevate the level of sportsmanship in wrestling,” said Erin. “Competitors from rival nations both on and off the wrestling mat have shown genuine goodwill towards one another, leaving the fight on the mat.”
As a veteran coach herself, Erin realizes she has an opportunity to demonstrate strong sportsmanship to youth athletes, and she does so every time she decides to “lead by example.”
“Win or lose, I show appreciation for other teams’ effort,” said Erin. “Regardless of the outcome. A simple “good luck” or “great match” to those representing other countries is common in our sport.”
Erin also believes that coaches can help ensure good sportsmanship among youth athletes via strong, direct communication – with both athletes and parents. Read her full Q&A for the story.
“Coaches should also discuss directly with athletes and parents concerning expectations as part of the team,” explained Erin.
Balance is also important, said Erin, who cited the need to stress “development, love for the sport, and winning as part of a successful formula to develop our athletes.”
At Liberty Mutual Insurance, we constantly look for ways to celebrate the countless acts of responsibility shown by people every day. We created Responsible Sports, powered by Positive Coaching Alliance, as part of this belief to help ensure that our kids experience the best that sports have to offer in environments that promote and display responsibility. We believe kids can learn valuable life lessons when coaches and parents come together to support winning on and off the mat.
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