Sports Question

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-25-2004
Sports Question
Wed, 09-22-2010 - 4:22pm

I just posted a question about my dear forgetful son. I also have a separate issue I want some advice on. He's a 7th grader and this is the first year cross country has been available to his grade. He has some good friends whom he


iVillage Member
Registered: 12-12-2007
Wed, 09-22-2010 - 5:22pm
This is a tough one.
Avatar for cl_cathiann
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Wed, 09-22-2010 - 5:58pm

It's so hard to focus on something other than coming in last--especially at this age, but I think even adults would have trouble dealing with that! Sounds like you're doing everything I would suggest--focus on self improvement he's made. Is he improving his times? Look at that. Is he having FUN? Those things should be most important. I would also commiserate with him--losing is TOUGH and he can be bummed about it--for awhile, then focus on how he's improved. Poor kid!

Oh--wait, I have something else to add. He does have areas where he excels, right? Remind him of that--and that while this might not come naturally to him (due to his health issues), he's doing fantastic.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-26-2008
Thu, 09-23-2010 - 9:50am

I was pretty much always back of the pack when I did cross country (we wont go there with how long ago that was ;) lol) but I still remember what my dad told me


Community Leader
Registered: 12-16-2003
Thu, 09-23-2010 - 11:33pm
Keep track of his times.

Ramona  Mom to 2 great kids and wife to one wonderful hubby since 1990!

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-06-2000
Mon, 09-27-2010 - 4:51pm

I haven't read the other posts, but I would suggest that if you really want it to be about improving himself - - it makes more sense to run on his own recreationally rather than being a member of a competitive team.

As long as he is doing it as a member of a competitive team - of course he is going to be looking at the wins and losses.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-05-1998
Tue, 09-28-2010 - 4:14pm

My ninth grade DS runs cross country.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-30-2003
Tue, 09-28-2010 - 10:01pm

I'm impressed with your son for giving cross country
a shot, given his medical background.

The middle school cross country coach here is exceptional.
She stresses all the time that they are competing against
themselves, working to improve their own times.

I hope it doesn't stop being fun for him if he's coming
in last all the time. It sounds like he's being really
hard on himself. I think you're doing exactly the right
thing. Can you get him swimming in the off season? That
might help him maintain or improve his fitness level.


font-size: 14pt;">Susan




iVillage Member
Registered: 11-01-2001
Thu, 09-30-2010 - 5:33pm

Our XC teams are a really family around here. I think that's actually very common. Every Friday night there are team pasta parties, the girls make a point of wearing matching hair bands, the members proudly wear their team tees. They cheer one another on and really care about one another (even between the middle schools and up to the high school).

My dd is a slower runner. She knows that she won't be finishing the race at the front. She does however work to improve her time.

She and a friend/teammate realized that all the team "leaders" (all 8th graders) will be running in the sectional meet next week. Since neither of these girls will be running, they have taken the responsibility of making posters for their teammates that will be running. They have organized all the 7th grade girls who won't be running the meet and they will be at our house making posters until the wee hours next Friday.

These two have also started talking about next year's hair band and what they want to make for the team. I think they are also thinking about next year's tee shirt design. Basically they have stepped up into the leadership positions that need to be filled. Are there ways that your son could step up into a leadership position? He might not be the best athlete, but maybe his role could be as an encourager or leader.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-06-2007
Thu, 10-14-2010 - 12:13am

I also ran cross-country in junior high and was consistently the lowest-ranked or second-lowest ranked runner on my team. I didn't love finishing last all the time, or the occasional crappy comments from my teammates to the effect of "Why do you even bother?" but I was determined to do a sport, and that was the only one that was open to everybody, regardless of ability. (I tried out for all the other sports every year, too, but never made the cut.) I just tried to focus on my own goals - running the whole route without stopping to walk, beating my previous time, etc.- and not think too much about what other people were doing.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-23-2000
Tue, 10-19-2010 - 10:24am

Sorry, but I can't see any positives here.