Violence in Sports: How It Affects Your Children

Violence in sports is a normalized aspect for many parents. However, this type of situation should never be allowed. We'll tell you why.
Violence in Sports: How It Affects Your Children

Last update: 19 May, 2022

Although it may seem unusual, violence in sports is quite common. Sports are usually designed to measure people’s physical and psychological capabilities through competition. However, it can reach the point of becoming an unhealthy practice, especially when defeat is dealt with in an aggressive, negative, and uncomprehending manner.

Violence in any field is bad, as it doesn’t contribute to any aspect of life and disadvantages those who practice it or suffer from it. Now let’s imagine the impact that a violent scenario produces on children who participate in a sport.

Do you think that violence in sports affects children?

Establishing the influence that violence has on children who practice a sport isn’t as complex as it seems. The reason for doing so is centered on the fact that every weekend, situations of conflict are evidenced, and often it’s the parents who participate in it.

Complaints to the referee, gestures of disgust, and rudeness among the adults who encourage the different teams are the main signs of violence in sports. These types of scenes are witnessed by children, who are on the field giving their all. This is definitely an inappropriate example for them.

It should be noted that some sports encourage more verbal communication between coaches and parents than others. This aspect may influence the genesis of misunderstandings.

According to a study by the University of Seville, communication between all peers strengthens mutual respect, both toward the referee and other opponents.

Children learning the value of good sporstmanship.
The spirit of sportsmanship is instilled from early stages and is replicated throughout life.

Learning by example

The sensitive stages of learning are evident during childhood. At this time, children acquire knowledge more easily and these advances occur at a physical and psychological level.

In addition, many of the concepts that are incorporated do so through imitation. Therefore, being a good example is a powerful teaching tool until children understand the background of what’s being transmitted.

Imitative learning is evidenced in academic classes of all kinds, as well as in physical and sports activities.

Based on the above, it can be stated that acts of violence in sports carried out by parents can also be learned by their children. In general, these behaviors can affect them indirectly and become evident in their subsequent behavior.

Violence and meaningful learning

Violence in sports affects children, especially in their behavior. However, these are acts that can be remedied through education at home and reflection on this type of situation.

The problem arises when episodes of violence become repetitive because this way, they become a significant learning experience for the child. Therefore, it’s likely that the child will replicate this type of behavior immediately or in the future, in adolescence or adulthood.

What are the reasons for violence in sports?

Although sport focuses on teaching values, some people tend to take competition to another level. Many even argue that competitiveness admits any means to achieve victory.

You and your children should know what the main reasons are that lead human beings to behave violently in sports.

1. Confusing sportsmanship with violence

Sportsmanship is the ability to face victory and defeat with the same composure. It doesn’t mean that you and the children celebrate a defeat, but it does mean that they learn what competition is about and accept this outcome as possible and necessary.

Without a defeat, there’s no victory.

However, violence in sports occurs because of a poor understanding of this fact. Therefore, confusing sportsmanship with “winning at any cost” is the worst mistake that can be made when educating children on this subject.

2. Competing for an important prize

Psychological pressure increases when a championship game is played. Such behavior can be evidenced in the famous and popular sports of each region.

If your child is competing in a final, what you want most as a parent is for them to win. Such emotion and desire can lead you to lose your temper, to the point of staging a violent spectacle.

3. Being a victim of excessive pressure

Although parents are the main actors of violence in children’s sports, children also indulge in this behavior.

Violent acts among children often have their origin in the excessive pressure to which they’re subjected. Whether it’s their own, from parents, coaches, or even spectators.

Pressure influences children’s actions and clouds the sportsmanship previously learned.

A mother cheering on her child during a sports game.

Values in sports, a virtue that’s transmitted from parents to children

The main objective when enrolling your children in a sport is that they learn to socialize. Sharing with other individuals not only serves to develop communication and relationships but also to learn all kinds of values. This learning is linked to sportsmanship and the true importance of children’s sports.

Beyond using sports as an educational tool for children, it’s also necessary to implement it with parents. Although it may seem a bit exaggerated, parents who attend with their children should be re-educated based on the values of sport, in order not to harm their children.

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