You see a battery of guns go by at a trot, and for a moment you are back at White Oak Swamp, or Antietam, or on the Jerusalem Road.
You hear a few shots fired in the distance, and for an instant your heart stops as you say to yourself, The skirmishers are at it, and listen for the long roll of fire from the main line. You meet an old comrade after many years of absence, he recalls the moment that you were nearly surrounded by the enemy, and again there comes up to you that swift and cunning thinking on which once hung life and freedom -- Shall I stand the best chance if I try the pistol or the sabre on that man who means to stop me?
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Will he get his carbine free before I reach him, or can I kill him first? These and the thousand other events we have known are called up, I say, by accident, and, apart from accident, they lie forgotten. But as surely as this day comes round we are in the presence of the dead. For one hour, twice a year at least--at the regimental dinner, where the ghosts sit at table more numerous than the living, and on this day when we decorate their graves--the dead come back and live with us.
I see them now, more than I can number, as once I saw them on this earth. They are the same bright figures, or their counterparts, that come also before your eyes; and when I speak of those who were my brothers, the same words describe yours. I have heard the question asked whether our war was worth fighting, after all. There are many, poor and rich, who think that love of country is an old wife's tale, to be replaced by interest in a labor union, or, under the name of cosmopolitanism, by a rootless self-seeking search for a place where the most enjoyment may be had at the least cost.
I do not know the meaning of the universe.
But in the midst of doubt, in the collapse of creeds, there is one thing I do not doubt, that no man who lives in the same world with most of us can doubt, and that is that the faith is true and adorable which leads a soldier to throw away his life in obedience to a blindly accepted duty, in a cause which he little understands, in a plan of campaign of which he has little notion, under tactics of which he does not see the use.
Most men who know battle know the cynic force with which the thoughts of common sense will assail them in times of stress; but they know that in their greatest moments faith has trampled those thoughts under foot. You know your own weakness and are modest; but you know that man has in him that unspeakable somewhat which makes him capable of miracle, able to lift himself by the might of his own soul, unaided, able to face annihilation for a blind belief.
I heard a woman say there once, 'They gave their all. The information here comes from your kids, when asked what they want from sports. And it comes from the latest science and research about athletic development and parenting. It is certainly not the be all and end all, but hopefully it gives you a good head start as you strive to ensure that athletics is a positive and rewarding experience for your child. Be sure to also check out our Resources Section for some recommended reading and viewing from the materials I have used to supplement my thoughts, to write my books and make my videos.
I have found these coaches, speakers and teachers very helpful in my coaching and sports parenting journey, and I hope you will as well.
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Good luck! Youth sports has the potential to be a wonderful, life altering, and positive experience for our children and our families.
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It can also be negative, and detrimental to our relationships with our children, and their own psyche. Perhaps you are here because your child is just starting in sports, or is having a great time and you want to learn how to help. Whatever the reason, what matters most is that you ARE HERE, and looking to make the youth sports experience a great one for all involved! Sports parenting is an art , and for each and every child and family, there are a variety of parenting styles, methods and ideas that can all lead to the outcome of a positive sports experience.
We may have been or still are high achieving athletes ourselves, yet our kids may not respond the way we did to athletics. What then?
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Whom do we rely on to teach us how to make our kids experiences better ones then ours? Being the parent of a young athlete is not easy, but there is hope, as long as we are not afraid to look for some guidance. In this section you will hopefully find some information that will help you with your young athletes. We would never presume to tell anyone how to parent their own child. How you get there is completely up to you, we just want to help you recognize a few of the necessary components that may help you negotiate the journey of raising a happy young athlete.
Our children are bombarded with pop culture values that most of would probably deem negative ones popularity, fame, self centeredness, conceitedness, materialism.
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Sports is among the few places where they can learn positive core values, engage in healthy risk taking, and learn life lessons in a safe environment. We need to do more to reverse these alarming, and dangerous trends. They do not play to win. They like to win, they enjoy competing, but they do not play to win.
They play to have fun, to be with their friends, to feel good about themselves, and because it is exciting. We look at wins and losses, and fail to search for happy faces, and proper developmental environments. They want parental support and encouragement. They want you to watch them play and praise them for their effort. They want you to be realistic about their ability. And they want you to be present, and interested in what they are doing. They do not want you to yell at their coach, the officials, and them. They want the game to be theirs! It is up to us as parents to make sure our children are in sports environments that accentuate the positives, and keep kids in the game.
We also must be on the lookout for the items above, making sure that we are communicating with our kids about their experience. Educate yourself! Learn what makes kids tick. Learn the secrets of high performance, and of a positive mindset. Click on any of the links on the left to start your journey. Good luck. The goal of athletics for your very young child is to help him or her acquire Physical Literacy. Having these skills allows children to feel good about participation in physical activities. Not all children have these skills innately, nor do they come as easy for some as they do for others.
They must be taught.
As a parent of a young child, it is imperative that you put them in an environment that teaches the movements and skills of physical literacy. This does not mean only organized sports programs; this is back yard play, running and jumping at the play ground, swimming or sledding with the family, etc.
Children ages need to engage in daily, unstructured active play by themselves, and with their peers, in order to develop the foundational physical literacy needed to become active for life. Not only will they develop physical coordination and motor skills, but an early active start enhances development of brain function, posture and balance. It also helps children to become confident, gain emotional control, and develop both social skills and imagination while at the same time reducing stress and improving sleep. A wide variety of physical activities should be introduced, and most importantly this phase should be seen by children as fun and engaging parts of a day.
The brain develops rapidly the first three years of life, forming pathways and connections much more rapidly then in later years. As a result, an active start to development improves coordination and balance, as well as helps kids learn more efficiently and confidently. It improves emotional development, imagination, and leadership while building strong muscle and bone, and promoting a healthy weight and lifestyle. Their focus does not last long, so move quickly from one adventure to another to keep them engaged.
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It is also a great stage for parents to join their kids, to run, jump and laugh along side them, and model the skills and techniques for kids to learn. Kids learn by doing, and by modeling what others do, so jump right in. The basic foundational movements of crawling, walking, running and jumping come naturally to kids, as their bodies develop the proper strength and coordination skills to perform them. Kids develop these basic skills when they are encouraged to do so, surrounded by active children and adults to model, and provided a safe environment to experiment.