Setting Goals As A Young Athlete And Practicing These

We cannot deny the fact that young kids are still immature that’s why parents and coaches are supposed to guide them towards a better or brighter path. They are playing sports for the school, community, or organization so they are involved in student-athletes goal setting at a young age. So parents should support them because sports will help in the child’s growth and development but we must learn how to set priorities since they are also studying.

Setting goals are important when in sports and these must be practiced for the child to be successful because he will be carrying these for the rest of his life. Keep in mind that he is very young and if was taught to set goals, then he will apply this in every aspect of life. It won’t just be incorporated when playing sports, but also in school and at home or even when they make simple decisions.

For these kids, goal-setting is a way for their parents and coaches to motivate or encourage them to do their best, show what they’ve got, and bring out their skills. Sometimes, these children even think that they will be rewarded for the achievement that’s why they would like to win the game. This only means that they must be prepared to face failures as well because these might disappoint them and decrease their interest in sports.


These are the things that you want to achieve as a young athlete. This does not mean that you have to reach your target after setting it. You have to set a timeframe for this and work on it until the target was reached – check on to read further.

However, you’ll be more successful when you were able to achieve your target on time. This achievement can be set for your daily, weekly, monthly, yearly target, or more.

Sometimes, it does not even matter if it will take longer before reaching this because we can never tell what incidents might happen in the process. I guess what’s more important is your determination to achieve one and you did not give up on it.

How to Set Goals

As a child, our coach or parents help us in setting what to achieve as young athletes, though some of them prefer to set these without anyone telling them what to do. Just keep in mind to make these realistic or specific and don’t list down things that are impossible to achieve in the short term. This is to avoid disappointments that will just take your confidence away.

While you are in the process, you may face unavoidable circumstances that may prevent you from reaching your target successfully. In this case, you may make necessary adjustments on what you have already set so that you can, later on, revise these again to get back on track. By the way, there were never rules telling that you are not allowed to change your target so you are free to do so.

It is also good if we can evaluate our goals and revise them when necessary. We know ourselves better than anyone else and we are aware of our capabilities. Therefore, we can change these targets to be more realistic so that we can meet our expectations.


When it is short-term, you may have to achieve this in less than 2 months. This also refers to your targets that can be accomplished every day, week, or month.

For a medium-term, it could be set for at least 2 years. Let’s say that it could be your target for a couple of months or a year.

And then, we also have long-term which could be achieved in five years or more. This would surely be something that you want to be or to have after leaving your post as a young athlete and moving to a higher division or changing a career.


An athlete cannot always control an Outcome goal no matter how much he desires for it. That’s because you can’t say that you or your team is always better than your opponent. Let’s say that you would aim at reaching the top 1 or even the third but we can never imagine where our place would be until the competition ends.

With the Performance Goals, the young athletes may set standards and achieve this in a given timeframe. For example, when it comes to a 100-meter running event, you would like to finish 1 lap in 2 minutes. It only shows that you are in control so you will surely practice until your target is reached – go here to see how the first two types differ.

For the Process Goal, you deal with the strategies or techniques to enhance your performance. Again, the athlete controls the process so you can likely reach your target through determination, discipline, and practice. I guess it would be great to exert more time and effort in sports when you have free time but make sure not to overwork on it.

A Few Tips To Consider

Make sure that the target is process-oriented which means that the coach or parents must be specific when it comes to where the child must focus, especially when practicing and enhancing his skills. As a coach, you observe or evaluate their skills and you can see very well where they excel so you can let them focus on that. By the way, you can let them choose what skill they want to enhance but I guess, they will prefer something where they are already good for higher chances of success.

Since parents are allowing their child to set his target, then this does not necessarily mean to be sports-oriented because it could be on academics, music, arts, social life, and personality to name a few. For example, they may be doing well in sports but because of this, their studies are already affected and so they were not able to meet the grade that they want to achieve. In this case, support your children and let them choose where to focus because it may be difficult for them to play sports and study at the same time.

Don’t teach the kids to rely on the outcome of the competition and use this as a basis when it comes to setting their target because of a few uncontrollable and unexpected factors. This includes the level of skills, abilities, mental condition, physical, or health condition of each member of your team, as well as the weather, location, and audience. The results and comments from other people when they did not win may also be a reason for the kids to lose their interest in sports so it would be best to teach them how to accept failures.