Supportive parents take centre stage in celebrating Parents in Sport Week

The Sanchez family is the prototypical Canadian family.

Their three boys – Reese, Lucas and Nashten – run their parents ragged with their involvement in sports. From the rink to the baseball diamond, to soccer pitches, basketball courts, martial arts studios, golf courses and ski hills.

Yet, Rob and Theresa wouldn’t have it any other way.sanchez-pic2

“We feel it’s important that they are involved in sport to make sure they are always active and are able to enjoy the social aspects of sport,” says Theresa. “We want to do whatever we can to support them in whatever they are doing.”

While they should be celebrated every day, Rob and Theresa are among the millions of parents across the country that are being celebrated as part of Parents in Sport Week, which runs from Oct. 7-13. It’s all about honouring those parents who play an essential role in supporting children in sport and activity.

WinSport is a proud supporter of parents in sport. The team here sees every day the important role that parents play in supporting their kids in sport or other activities. It goes beyond bankrolling their activities, it’s emotional support, driving to and from practices and games, washing jerseys, providing snacks, organizing tournaments or dozens of other key supports.

Theresa is a member of the WinSport marketing team and not only spends her on-the-job hours at Canada Olympic Park, but hours upon hours with her kids on the ski and snowboard hill or in the Markin MacPhail Centre for hockey. Much of their summers have been spent at WinSport summer camps.

“We try to introduce them to all sorts of sports and try not to focus on one in particular. We want them to be well-rounded and that’s really what we want to teach the kids,” says Sanchez. “As you go through life and into adulthood, you will either play softball or a round of golf. Maybe someone will invite you on a snowboarding trip. We just want them to be able to do a variety of sports.”

Parents in Sport Week is the brainchild of the Child Protection in Sport Unit (CPSU) in the United Kingdom. It celebrates all the parents who help to make youth sport possible by registering their children for programs, driving them to practices and games, providing unconditional support, and more.

“My parents help me with my sports in a lot of ways,” says Nashten, 10. “They always drive me to all of my activities. They help me get my equipment on when I need help, they are always cheering me on and telling me to never give up.”

It’s really important that you are there for the good and the bad.

“It’s really important that you are there for the good and the bad,” says Theresa. “Always give them positive reinforcement, but you have to give them some feedback on things they can improve on. They aren’t always going to be the best players. You want them to grow in their sport, whatever sport they are in. Sport is very emotional, so you just have to be there for them.”

To learn more about Parents in Sport Week follow us on Twitter (@WinSportCanada), Instagram (@WinSportCanada) or Facebook (facebook.com/CanadaOlympicPark/)