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Daughter struggling in netball

Answered 1 month ago

My daughter is 13 and she has played netball for a couple years now. She loves the game but is really really struggling with her ability, she has always struggled with things like coordination but she’s at an age where everyone around her is rapidly developing physically and she is really having a hard time keeping up. Her coach is really sweet and always makes sure she’s still getting time on the court but I’m a little bit worried at the fact that she still finds the basics such as passing, pivoting and catching really hard (by the way I’m not putting any pressure on her to be good at it, just I’m a little concerned about how far behind she is compared to everyone else).

She mainly plays WA and GA and we have a netball hoop at home so she practices shooting all the time. She says she loves playing but I can’t help but wonder if she feels a little bit embarrassed by her lack of ability (playing a position like GA means everyone’s eyes turn to her as she’s shooting).

Any advice on how I can help her with this? She tries her absolute best every game and I’m really proud of her, but I don’t want her to have to feel like she’s incapable or behind everyone else.


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ANSWER
1 month ago
It's hard to read this without feeling like you are projecting since you have not mentioned her raising this once. Also, being places in those positions, she can't be that bad. Has she raised this with you?

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REPLY
1 month ago
I am projecting a little bit, she hasn’t raised things like her feeling embarrassed but I can just see it in her face sometimes that she feels a little insecure about it. And she plays those positions because they’re the only ones she really has experience in, when she first started playing a couple years ago she played GA mainly because it was what she enjoyed the most and she’s transitioned to playing WA too because her team doesn’t have too many people who play it (her team is mainly made up of taller girls for her age). I don’t mean to sound harsh but honestly she is that bad, she just isn’t a naturally sporty person and it’s taken her longer than most to pick up all of the essential skills required. Perhaps a position change might benefit her?

ANSWER
1 month ago
If you're concerned about her gross motor skills and coordination generally, you could consider a consultation with an Occupational Therapist, they may be able to assess and provide a home exercise program for her

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REPLY
1 month ago
I’ve thought about that a little bit, but I’ve always just kinda thought that sports just aren’t her strength. Maybe I’ll ask her HPE teacher about it, she might be able to provide a little more insight into if she’s super far behind or not

ANSWER
1 month ago
Do you know a bit about netball yourself? Ask her coach what she feels like your daughter needs to work on and do a bit of drills with her when you have spare time during the week? I was lucky enough to have two sisters to train with along with mum and dad so we’d practice shooting, passing, little drills etc was fun and heaps of bonding time!
If you don’t know anything about netball or don’t have time, I’d suggest asking the coach if she could take a couple of minutes out of training to help your daughter in areas that would benefit her and up her game… if that makes sense 😅

Good luck to your daughter!!

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REPLY
1 month ago
Thank you!! I usually do try and do a couple of little drills with her in the afternoon sometimes but it’s usually just passing back and forth or having a little shootaround with her. Asking the coach for more specific advice surrounding this sounds like a good idea. I know a bit about netball but I’ve never played before myself so there’s only so much I can do. I will also ask the coach to work with her a little bit more closely on her game if that’s possible, but I don’t to be controlling or anything, you know? I feel bad for her, she really does try so hard. I hope she doesn’t feel too embarrassed

REPLY
1 month ago
Definitely speak to her coach and see what she says. I don’t see it as controlling as your daughter has said she enjoys playing, you’re looking for ways to help her improve.

Little drills like the ones you do with her is a big help, make sure she’s doing chest passes correctly, maybe practice pivots with her, or you could always act as defence while she practices shooting?

I think as a mother we always tend to overthink things, but definitely talk to your daughter and see how she feels! Keep thinking positive and remind her she’s doing a great job. Compliment her on what you think she did great in training / games 😊

REPLY
1 month ago
Did have a small chat to the coach at training yesterday! She pointed out that my daughter’s footwork is a little wonky and she struggles to properly pivot, as well as she is too hesitant to attempt long passes (even if she isn’t always hitting the target, her coach still wants her to attempt them) and she still is pretty terrible at shooting (coach said she’ll help her improve her mechanics, I’m afraid I can’t help much in that department)

I do always remind her that she’s doing a great job! I always make sure to congratulate her for her effort especially, sports have never been the easiest thing in the world for her in terms of ability but she really does try so hard. I’ll make sure to get her throwing some longer passes to me, I hope it doesn’t ruin her confidence too much if she isn’t able to properly make them at first.

She also loves just shooting on the hoop for a while, even if her shots aren’t going in (which is most of the time 😬) she still always finds a happy place doing it. I’ll also try and talk to her a little more about everything and make sure that she really does have a fun time playing, but I don’t really wanna bring up her ability in that conversation because I would hate for her to think that it’s all about who’s the best player.