Publication Date



The involvement of children in sports is rarely an individual endeavor and can positively and /or negatively affect the entire family system to varying degrees. However, little has been written about how children’s participation in sports impact family dynamics. In working toward filling this void, this paper elaborates on several themes that can emerge when children participate in school or community sports. The themes that will be discussed in this paper include: parent/coach/child triangulation, parent coach-parent conflict, performing a dual role, the family all-star, time, financial commitment, and differing parental perspectives. Based on informal observations and discussions with children, parents, and coaches who are involved in a variety of sports, this paper uses case vignettes to augment the discussion.

Recommended Citation

Morrissette, P. J., & Graham, R. (2003). Children, Sports, and Family Dynamics: Are We Having Fun Yet?, Dimensions of Counseling, 31(2), 31-37. doi:10.22237/mijoc/1064966700





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