Helping parents keep children safe in sport
Updated on 27 October 2020
Sport Integrity Australia recognises the crucial role parents play in helping children achieve their sporting goals and also in protecting their children from the potential pitfalls.
Sport Integrity Australia CEO David Sharpe says the pressure to train hard, compete and achieve at the highest level “can lead young athletes to think about taking dangerous shortcuts”.
That is why Sport Integrity Australia, in partnership with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and Play by the Rules, have developed two Parents’ Guide to Support Clean Sport resources – an online course to help parents ensure healthy athletic development and prevent the use of performance enhancing drugs and a supporting brochure.
“These resources are designed to help parents enhance their children’s knowledge of how to protect themselves in their sport or career,” Mr Sharpe says. “Sport Integrity Australia encourages parents to be the consistent voice in promoting safety, good health, integrity, balance and enjoyment of clean sport, while also teaching them respect for and appreciation of the true spirit of sport.”
The resources cover topics such as healthy sport cultures, nutrition, the risks of supplements and doping risk factors, and includes links to websites where parents can find further useful information.
WADA’s Director of Education and Communications Catherine Maclean says the resource is relevant to parents of all levels of athletes from beginner to elite.
“Parents need to be aware of what the issues are and what the health impacts are so they can better inform their children and answer their questions. Research shows that parents are frequently the one constant throughout the athlete’s career, which serves to highlight the importance of them being fully informed of issues related to clean sport.”