Youth Sports General Information & Parent Tips

Parents: Do You Dare to Chill?

Parent Tips & Information

“There are millions of children and adolescents participating in youth sports programs throughout America. In the process of sports participation, youth develop behavioral attitudes that they will carry with them for the rest of their lives. These attitudes establish a framework for sports in American society and all too often are dramatically altered, as youth grow older.” – National Summit of Sportsmanship in Youth Sports
All your player needs to hear from you is "I love watching you play."
Check out this Parent's Guide to Improving Youth Sports, by the Citizenship through Sports Alliance.

Redefine "Winning"
In the culture of today, many coaches have adopted a “success = performance” perspective. If their team succeeds (i.e., acquires outcomes), then the identification leads to coaches feeling good. Anything short of success leads to problem behaviors from the coach. What we need are cultures that encourage a “success = progress” point of view. That is, a vision that teaches children, their parents and the coach that improvement (i.e., the process) in sport is more important than winning and losing (i.e., the outcome). When coaches and parents are encouraged to identify with their team’s progress, they will be joyous when the team improves, regardless of who won or lost. In professional sports (which is an entertainment setting), there is only one goal--to have the most points at the end of a contest. However, in youth sports (which is an educational setting), there is a more important goal: to produce young people who will be winners in life. To help our children get the most out of competitive sports, we need to redefine what it means to be a "winner."
Winners are people who:
    • Make maximum effort.
    • Continue to learn and improve.
    • Refuse to let mistakes (or fear of making mistakes) stop them.
  • Tell your child that it's OK to make a mistake because that is how they learn.
  • Let your child know you appreciate it when he tries hard even if unsuccessful.
  • Ask rather than tell. Try to get your child to talk about her play rather than telling her what you think about it. Ask open-ended questions to get her to talk (e.g., "What was the best part of the game for you?")  
  • Let the coaches criticize your child's play. Do not sideline coach.
  • Tell your child you are proud of him regardless of the outcome of the game. It can be as simple as telling your child "I love to watch you play," regardless of how they did or who won.
Sportsmanship and Honoring the Game
There are many ways to create a youth sports culture that promotes sportsmanship.  Youth sports must strive to restore, promote and emphasize the value of sportsmanship, which emphasizes ethical and moral conduct throughout their programs:

Acceptable (and expected) behaviors:
  • Applaud and cheer for both teams.
  • Use positive language, more importantly, body language while watching youth sports.
  • Accept all decisions of the officials.

Unacceptable behaviors:

  • Yelling, heckling, booing or any other disrespectful comments
  • Having negative body language (throwing hands up during a call, etc.)
  • Blaming a loss or mistake on anyone
  • Putting competitive nature before any child’s well-being
  • Using profanity or violence in any way

"Honoring the Game" gets to the ROOTS of positive play, where ROOTS stands for respect for:

  • Rules: We don't bend the rules to win.
  • Opponents: A worthy opponent is a gift that forces us to play to our highest potential.
  • Officials: We treat officials with respect even when we disagree.
  • Teammates: We never do anything that would embarrass our team on or off the field.
  • Self: We live up to our own standards regardless of what others do.
  • Let your child know that you want him to Honor The Game. Discuss the meaning of each element of ROOTS with your athletes.
  • Be a good role model. Honor the Game when you attend games. Cheer both teams when good plays are made. If, in your opinion, an officiating mistake is made, be silent! Use this as an opportunity to think about how difficult it is to officiate a game perfectly.
  • Encourage other parents to Honor the Game.
  • Click here to see a short presentation on what parents can do from the stands to promote sportsmanship.

We Love our Officials

The umpires/officials are part of the CARD Youth Sports team. They are here for the kids, and are trying to do what is best for them. We have an expectation for all umpires/officials to have the following priorities:

  1. Safety
  2. Fairness
  3. Fun

The officials uphold the sportsmanship, respect and integrity of the game. Coaches/parents and officials sometime have a difficult relationship because of one major factor: coaches/parents are most vested in who wins and officials aren't. Because coaches/parents are pulling for their team, they see the game with a built-in bias. Officials do not make the calls that decide the outcomes of the game. Players commit fouls and violations; officials view those infractions, judge the action and then apply the rules of the game to what they have viewed (and sometimes what they viewed will be the opposite of what parents/coaches viewed). The officials do not decide the outcome of the game; the players and coaches do.

  • Recognize the difficult job an official has and use any mistakes they make as a learning opportunity in how to deal with adversity.
  • Never blame a loss on the official. Show players how to accept ownership of actions and to not transfer blame.
  • Instead of creating a difficult time or relationship with the officials- get to know them and thank them after the game for doing their best.
Refusal to Abide by the Officials Decision
This procedure is designed to help and encourage all members of the Youth Sports Department to achieve and maintain the standards of behavior as detailed on this website. The goal is to ensure consistent and fair treatment to all members.
If a coach, player, parent or spectator refuses to abide by the officials decision and/or argues with the judgment of the official making the call, the official when give give a warning, and then we will be following our Refusal to Abide by the Officials Decision.

All offenses are cumulative throughout the current season 

Parent Test

This test is intended to see whether you or someone you know is in danger of becoming a parent that has lost sight of the goals of youth sports and is becoming detrimental to the program and their child (borrowed from the Redding Recreation website :-).

  • Are you disappointed in your child when he/she loses or doesn't play well?
  • Are you unhappy because your child's athletic ability and skill level doesn't live up to your expectations?
  • Do you coach from the sidelines?
  • Do you compare your child's skills or talent with other players on the team?
  • Do you boast and brag about your child's performance to others?
  • Do you get mad at your child's coaches when they don't play him or her as much as you think they should?
  • Do you yell at the officials when they make a call or decision you don't agree with?
  • Do you blame circumstances or others - teammates, coaches, or referees ­when your child doesn't perform well?
  • Do you blame your child when he or she doesn't play as well as you think they should?
  • Do you make negative remarks to opposing players or coaches?
  • Do you critique your child's events, telling them every mistake they made?

- If you answered, "yes" to one or two questions, you are a normal youth sports parent who just sometimes gets carried away.

- If you answered, "yes" to three or more, you need to take a time out and rethink your involvement in your child's sport life. Refocus your mentality to winning=learning rather than the outcome of the game.

- If you answered, "yes" to most or all of the questions, you need to remove yourself from the youth sports arena. Your actions are detrimental to your child and the program. Please re-evaluate your involvement in youth sports and how you communicate with your child in regards to their playing.


Don't forget that all your child needs to hear from you is "I love to watch you play." 

General Information

CARD Youth Sports Philosophy
Every participant, player, parent, coach, official and staff is considered to be part of the CARD Youth Sports team. The golden rule of the Youth Sports team is to remember that we are here for the kids (they are kids first and players second!). We want to make every child in our program not only a better athlete, but more importantly, a better person through the life skills the youth sports can provide. We strive to achieve the below goals with every single child in our Youth Sports program and leagues: Promote respect, citizenship and sportsmanship Teach the fundamentals of sports, with progression of skills, drills and game play throughout the season/program. Make sure all players know that they are safe, they matter, they are supported, and they are connected to the team. Give all players a LOVE OF THE GAME that will spark an interest that will last a lifetime.
Important Information
We want each participant to be prepared the first day of program. Therefore, we have detailed information sheets for each sport that you will receive at the time of registration. Information sheets are also available online at the specific sports page.  These information sheets are very important - make sure you get one!  We also utilize emails to distribute information. Please make sure your email is up to date at the CARD office and that you are checking it regularly for updates.


Buddy Request Information for Leagues
Click here to print off a buddy request.
  • All requests must be turned into the CARD Office at 545 Vallombrosa Ave or faxed to (530) 895-4721. no later than noon on the day of your assigned skills evaluation. In order to be a valid buddy request, please read the information below:
  • The only time buddy requests will be evaluated is when it is necessary to have 2 or more teams at one school due to registration numbers. If there are not enough numbers for more than one team, all players from that school, which registered before the registration deadline, are kept together and combined with another school. All requests must be turned in no later than noon on the day of your assigned skills evaluations.
  • No buddy requests will be taken on site.
  • You may only submit ONE buddy request for your child.
  • Please note, you may only request ONE buddy, requesting more than one will void your request.
  • A buddy request form must be completed and submitted by both requesting parties (buddies must request each other). Requested "buddy" must be in the same grade and attend the same school.
  • Please keep in mind these are requests only and we can never guarantee the request will be honored. 

General Youth Sports Jersey Information

In an effort to reduce program costs and offer lower program fees to our customers, we will be using a single jersey for all elementary sports. Each elementary sport will note whether the jersey is mandatory or optional in the sports description. Jerseys are available for purchase in the CARD office for $13. If you buy a jersey and your child out grows it, or is no longer going to use it, please donate it back to CARD for our "Almost New" jersey program that will help youth sports families in need of a jersey!

Sport Program
Jersey Requirement
Sandlot Flag Football
Jersey purchase optional
Elementary & Jr. High Flag Football
Jersey purchase required
Little Hoopsters
Jersey purchase optional
Elementary Basketball Leagues
Jersey purchase required
Jr. High & High School Basketball Leagues
Jersey cost included in cost of registration
Elementary Volleyball Program
Jersey purchase not necessary
Elementary, Jr. High & High School Volleyball Leagues
Each individual team decides on jerseys
 ShortE All Stars/Toddler Sports
Jersey purchase optional


Practice Information for Leagues

All leagues are required to have at least one practice per week during the season (weather permitting for some sports).

Sport League
Practice Information
Flag Football
Practice time and location is determined by the volunteer coach

Elementary Basketball
Practice time and location is determined by the volunteer coach (could be outside if no other gym space is available)
Jr. High & High School Basketball
Practice time and location is assigned to the coach by CARD at a community gym based on availability.
Volleyball (all leagues)
Practice time and location is assigned to the coach by CARD at a community gym based on availability.
Jr. Giants
Practice time and location is determined by the volunteer coach

Team Formation Information for Leagues
  • Participants must register by school. Children who are home schooled will be placed at the discretion of the Recreation staff. All teams are ultimately formed at the discretion of the Recreation Supervisor.
  •  CARD reserves the right to add additional players to any team in order to meet the needs of the program. All youth are encouraged to enroll from each school.
  • Schools should not recruit only enough players to stay below the maximum as this does NOT guarantee that the school will not be combined with another we want everyone to play!
  • It is the discretion of the Recreation Supervisor to form teams for the best interest of the majority of the participants and the best interest of the league.
  • Please Note: While participants register by school, programs are CARD programs and are in no way governed by the schools or any school district. Participants must register in the grade they are attending, unless special permission has been given by the Recreation staff. Participants must register in the grade they are attending, unless special permission has been given by the Recreation staff. 
  • Coach's children will be guaranteed placement on that particular team.
  • If a school does not have enough players to fill a team, CARD reserves the right to distribute those players to other teams. There is no guarantee they will kept together, but we will do our best to do so.
  • If a school has enough players for two or more teams, there will be a skills evaluation to split the teams as evenly as possible. A CARD coach will contact you if a skills evaluation is necessary.
  • There is no tolerance for unsportsmanlike conduct from players or parents.  Players or parents penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct will be penalized at the discretion of the Youth Sports Department.