Welcome to Prime Athlete

February 2, 2016

It's no secret that what motivates one athlete can leave another indifferent. Some live for the fire of competition and anything that will help them better an opponent gets them going. Others need a tangible reward to bring out their best. And some create their own motivation through the internal satisfaction of a job well done. As a parent, do you know what is the greatest form of motivation for your son or daughter when it comes to playing sports?

To gain the proper perspective on this topic, you can start by considering these questions: 

February 1, 2016

Is your son or daughter in a season when he is getting a lot of attention for his sports performances? As you rejoice with his success, there are ways to help your athlete handle the extra attention in a healthy manner.

February 1, 2016

It is quite possible that the most effective classroom in educating children is not a classroom at all, but a school athletic experience.  The purpose of sports is to teach grit, self-control, zest, social intelligence, gratitude, optimism, and curiosity – because those traits are your student’s real ticket to success.

February 1, 2016

Yoga is very beneficial to sports performance, but it can also impede performance if you choose the wrong type.  Here are suggestions for making sure the type of yoga you select for your athletes is enhancing performance.

February 1, 2016

You want to make sure that your child is being treated fairly. But it really isn’t your place to question playing time and here’s why.

February 1, 2016

Because of its pervasiveness and harmful consequences, parents should discuss bullying with their children. They should open the lines of communication to find out if anyone is treating their child or any other child badly and, if necessary, should take steps to stop the abuse. Simply talking about the problem can be a huge stress reliever for a child who’s being bullied.

December 30, 2015

To get the most out of athletes, at any level, coaches must coach with the right attitude. Your attitude as a coach is far more important than any of the responsibilities you have as a coach.

December 30, 2015

Chronically sleep-deprived athletes probably don't realize all the ways they're hindering their performance. By explaining sleep's many physical and mental benefits, you can help them put the issue to rest.

December 30, 2015

Does your athlete struggle with mental toughness in sports? If so, it may be because the “The Imposter, ” in the inner voice inside your athlete, has taken over.

December 29, 2015

Do you want to be a better sports parent in the New Year, doing more to help your kids succeed at their game? A prominent sport psychology coach has this advice: Less is More.

December 29, 2015

Here are seven valuable tips that high school student-athletes can use in everyday life to improve their game, grades, relationships and life.

December 29, 2015

Parents have to resist the urge to offer a post-game litany of advice and constructive criticism on the drive home. Parents who didn't play sports in high school are likely to better understand that it’s more important to give your athlete unconditional support than to offer tips on how to play the sport at a higher level.

December 28, 2015

Concentrating on your opponent and obsessing about winning is harmful to you as an athlete. Being a champion means that you go out every day and compete against yourself.

December 2, 2015

by Raymond Prior, Ph.D

December 2, 2015

Whether it's consumed to enhance performance or as part of the daily diet, caffeine can be a negative for today's competitive athlete. In November, we looked at how caffeine affects a high school athlete from physiological and chemical standpoint.  In this issue, we look at the impact of caffeine in terms of athletic performance.

December 1, 2015

A 20-year trend in youth sports emphasizes teaching coaches how to create a healthy psychological environment for their athletes. However, there’s also an important need to educate parents, so they can support and supplement what trained coaches are trying to do.

December 1, 2015

Tim Warsinskey, a sports writer for the Cleveland Plain Dealer for more than 30 years, was inducted into the Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association’s Hall of Fame this year.  In honor of Warsinskey’s induction, the Plain Dealer republished a column that he wrote in 2008 about how parents should act during high school sporting events.  Warsinskey’s view on this topic is timeless and worth highlighting as we head into 2016.  The following is a summary of his 10 tips.

December 1, 2015

The life of a high school student-athlete is not easy.  There’s so much to juggle: school work, sports participation, social activities, college prep, family commitments and somehow finding some time for rest.

December 1, 2015

“Conceive Believe Achieve Soccer”, a company that specializes in conducting high school team camps, posted these thoughts on it’s web site.

December 1, 2015

The transition from high school to college can be daunting. With picking a school, deciding on a major and prepping for a new coach and team, the work that goes into playing college football can seem overwhelming. The best way to overcome the stress of transitioning to college life is to start preparing as early as possible.

Collegiate Sports Data President Joleyn Smithing offered the following tips on how to start prepping for the recruitment process and making a college selection.

November 10, 2015

by Dr. David Hoch, CMAA

After a practice session or contest, many coaches go into the locker room and dissect what took place.They talk with the assistants, vent and begin to plan for the next practice session.  But … you can’t simply stand in the corner talking.

November 10, 2015

Student-athletes moving directly from fall to winter sports can prevent injuries and other setbacks by being mindful of five tips provided by Dr. Brandon Mines, MD, a sports medicine physician and professor at Emory University, in his Advancing Your Health Blog located on Emory Healthcare’s “Advancing Youth Health” website.

Dr. Mines advocates the following preventative actions:

November 10, 2015

It’s hard enough to be a fan of a team—it’s that much harder when you have an added level of rooting interest because your son or daughter is a member of the team.

For so many reasons, it’s important for parents to monitor their emotions before, during, and after a game in which their child is playing and they are watching the stands.  Your son or daughter feeds off of your response, and how you react to what transpires in a game will affect their experience as an athlete.

November 10, 2015

James is an offensive lineman on his high school JV team. He is on the field as his offense drives for a go-ahead touchdown with less than a minute to go. The defensive tackle he has battled with all day is running out of gas as James has dominated him. In desperation on that last drive, the DT starts up with some really nasty trash talking. James ignores it as the play begins and gets down to business of protecting his quarterback.

November 10, 2015

Social media is a recreational tool for high school students that’s only increasing—a way for students to communicate with friends and express their beliefs and emotions.  For high school athletes, social media can also be a trap that impacts their likelihood of being recruited by college coaches.

MyTownTutors.com, a web site that provides information for parents of high school students, offers the following advice in talking to your son or daughter about being careful on the use of social media:

November 9, 2015

The average sport-recruiting budget for most college coaches to find athletes nationwide is less than $2,000 per year.  Almost 90% of all opportunities to play college sports are not at NCAA Division I level.

November 9, 2015

By Laura Smith

October 4, 2015

Face-to-face meetings with college coaches are important for an athlete who wants to be recruited. 

October 2, 2015

A quick Google search yields millions of results for mental toughness. One trait that gets little attention, though, is sacrifice.

October 2, 2015

By Frank L. Smoll, Ph.D.

 

Watching kids play sports is pure pleasure for most parents. The moms and dads shuttle their young athletes to practices and games hassle-free, with little or no accompanying drama. But we’ve all heard or read about the antics of a small minority of jerks.

  • After a hockey practice, a coach was beaten to death by a father who was upset about rough play in a scrimmage. The assailant was convicted of involuntary manslaughter.

October 2, 2015

For athletes striving to reach the top of their game, understanding how vitamins work and which ones are most important can make or break a season.

October 2, 2015

Putdowns and teasing – anyone around sports is aware that these verbal actions exist in many forms on athletic teams. They are generally associated with activities like team bonding, tradition, or just joking around, but there is a fine line between horseplay and bullying.

October 2, 2015

Staying positive in a losing game can be difficult in our current sports culture where so much emphasis is placed on the WIN rather than on enjoying the game or improving your skills.

August 30, 2015

The start of the school year is an important time for high school athletes looking to participate in their sport at the college level.  Dave Galehouse, Director of VarsityEdge.com, provides the following advice on steps juniors and sophomores can take in the fall to improve their chances in becoming an intercollegiate athlete.

August 29, 2015

Parental support is paramount to the success of high school and youth athletes.  Here are key elements to consider for a "Code of Conduct" that parents of athletes should follow.  This is an excerpt from the Coaches' Guide to Team Policies published by the American Sport Education Program (ASEP).

August 29, 2015

Coming back from adversity is the hallmark of mental toughness. Parents, not coaches, have the most influence over young players as to whether or not they will fall victim to defeatism or will bounce back from difficulty stronger than before.

Mental Toughness Trainer Craig Sigl provides the following tips on how parents can teach their child to be resilient in terms of their athletic experience by modeling their own behavior:

August 29, 2015

by Mark Goldberg

On August 15, All-Pro Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison announced that he is taking away his kids' participation trophies because he wants them to "EARN a real trophy."  Harrison explained his position by writing on Instagram: I'm not sorry for believing that everything in life should be earned and I'm not about to raise two boys to be men by making them believe that they are entitled to something just because they tried their best...cause sometimes your best is not enough, and that should drive you to want to do better...not cry and whine until somebody gives you something to shut u up and keep you happy.”

August 26, 2015

by Frank L. Smoll, Ph.D.

Most mothers and fathers are productive contributors to their children’s well-being in sports. Unfortunately, however, the negative effects of a small minority of parents are all too obvious. The good news is that incidents of parental misbehavior are not the norm! In fact the majority of parents are able to channel their genuine concerns and good intentions in a way that heightens the value of their children’s sport experiences.

August 22, 2015

by Aaron Goldberg

Many times in sports, it’s the little things that stand out or make the difference between true success and mediocrity. It’s the efforts away from practice that can prove to be the most beneficial. Nutrition falls under this category, and, further yet, “superfoods” represent the epitome of an underrated difference-maker at all levels of athletics.

June 12, 2015

Content by the Korey Stringer Institute

 

Exertional Heat Stroke (EHS) is a severe condition characterized by an extremely high core body temperature of above 40 C (104 F), central nervous system (CNS) dysfunction, and multiple organ system failure brought on by strenuous exercise, often occurring in the hot environments.

EHS is a medical emergency and can be a fatal condition if the individual’s core body temperature remains above 105 F for an extended period of time without the proper treatment.

June 11, 2015

by Dr. Mara Smith

Most athletes, particularly teen athletes, are mentally under-trained.  While they acknowledge that the mind is very important to their sport, they don’t have a plan to integrate mental skills into their physical training. Just as with individual physical skills, there are some mental skills that athletes have, and some that they need to learn.

June 11, 2015

by Steve Boyle

 

While I've worn many coaching hats, one of my most recent ones was as a volunteer assistant with my daughter’s travel basketball team. On the court, I experienced lots of memorable moments, but none unexpected, even as the girls progressed through their tumultuous middle school years.  But what I experienced off the court, watching three much younger kids—not even on the team—proved to be a revelation. 

June 11, 2015

By Coach John Scott

 

Athletic scholarships and college recruiting play a huge role in the lives of student athletes. When beginning that pursuit, what’s the best first course of action?

June 2, 2015

by Lisa Dorfman, MS, RD, CSSD, LMHC, FAND

 

While nutrition is important around the clock, it takes on added significance before and during a tough workout or a competition. Fortunately, research has zeroed in on the best foods to consume prior to exerting energy.

June 2, 2015

If an athlete is suspected of having suffered a concussion, the first step is that he or she be removed from the game or practice and refrain from any type of physical activity until being evaluated and cleared by a qualified medical professional. If the athlete is then diagnosed with a concussion, it is important to watch his or her behavior very closely for the next several days. If any of the following symptoms appear, you should take the person to the emergency room in case a more serious brain injury was suffered and emergency treatment or precautions are necessary: