The game of hockey is for kids. Kids play the game because they love it and because it is fun. As parents we must all realize that, for kids, positive participation is always more important than excellence. The personal and social development that comes from being part of a team is one of the most enriching experiences offered by the game. We must continue to live the values of fun and fair play, respect, integrity and teamwork with a balanced perspective of expectations and definition of success. We must celebrate our good experiences with this great game.
Our volunteers, our coaches, our referees, our parents and our children are all critical partners in ensuring the game sustains these high values. No one, however, is more critical than our parents. We must particularly assist our parents in setting reasonable expectations while understanding the game, its process and its administration.
Being a hockey parent is no easy task. Hockey parents are often called upon to wear many different volunteer hats, some of which result in conflicting roles. A hockey parent may be a coach, evaluator, director or a referee – any of whom is required to make decisions in everyone’s best interest while still being a mom or dad wanting what’s best for his or her own child. Parents wrestle with reconciling their roles and controlling their passion as fans while being faced with the constant challenge of ‘doing the right thing’. The CAL is committed to helping parents meet these challenges to ensure they continue to enjoy the game and have as much fun as their kids.
Remember, it’s about fairness and respect! It’s about play! It’s all about family! It’s about us all having fun and being kids! What else could really be more important?
CAL Parents & Spectators Fair Play Code & Policy
As a CAL parent, I will not force my child to participate in hockey. I will remember that my child plays hockey for his or her enjoyment, not for mine. I will encourage my child to play by the rules and to resolve conflicts without resorting to hostility or violence. I will teach my child that doing one’s best is as important as winning so that my child will never feel defeated by the outcome of a game. I will make my child feel like a winner every time by offering praise for competing fairly and trying hard. I will never demean my child for making a mistake or losing a game. I will remember that children learn best by example. I will applaud good plays and performances by both my child’s team and its opponents. I will never question the officials’ judgment or honesty in public. I will support all efforts to remove verbal and physical abuse from children’s hockey games. I will respect and show appreciation for the volunteer coaches who give their time to coach hockey for my child.
As a CAL spectator, I will remember that participants play hockey for their enjoyment. They are not playing to entertain me. I will not have unrealistic expectations. I will remember that players are not professionals and cannot be judged by professional standards. I will respect the officials’ decisions and I will encourage participants to do the same. I will never demean a player for making a mistake during a game. I will give positive comments that motivate and encourage continued effort. I will condemn the use of violence in any form and will express my disapproval in an appropriate manner to coaches and league officials. I will show respect for my team’s opponents because without them there would be no game. I will not use profane language, nor will I harass players, coaches, officials, or other spectators.
‘RESPECT IN HOCKEY’ | LEARN IT. LIVE IT. PASS IT ON. At least one parent or guardian of each player registered in minor hockey in the OMHA will be required to complete the Respect in Sport – Parent Program as a condition of participation. The one-hour online course is a proactive, educational program that empowers parents with the tools to ensure the game is enjoyable and respectful for themselves, their children, and all other stakeholders in the game.