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Parents encouraged to behave during junior sport finals

Parents encouraged to behave during junior sport finals
September 20, 2013

Western Australian Sport and Recreation Minister Terry Waldron has urged parents to keep a cool head on the sidelines during the finals of winter sport competitions in the State, emphasising that junior sport should be about skill development, building respect and fun.

Minister Waldron said it was up to all parents to lead by example and ensure they behaved appropriately at children's sporting events.

The Minister said most parents acted responsibly, but a minority could spoil it for everyone but he pointed to results from a study from South Australia's Flinders University, which showed that aggressive behavior from parents caused junior footballers to lose confidence and quit playing sport.

Minister Waldron explained "we want our children to keep playing sport into their adult years so their experience needs to be positive, not ruined by parents and spectators who display inappropriate behaviour.

"Sport is more than just winning. We know that sports enthusiasts can get very competitive during finals time so I am urging everyone to remember the principles of good sportsmanship.

"Let's not forget that finals are also the perfect time for competitors to thank the coaches, officials and volunteers at their club who help to get the games on the field each week.

"Club sport does not happen without all these dedicated people, wonderfully supported by our State sporting associations, who do a lot of work in making sure competitors and spectators understand how to behave in the sporting arena."

Minister Waldron said sport was a valuable forum that had many benefits, not only the physical, but also the social and academic.

Image used for illustrative purposes only.

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