This article is sponsored by the Holiday Inn Express® brand. All opinions are my own.
Hockey season has just kicked off, which means it’s going to be a busy winter for parents with kids in competitive sports. Between getting to practice on time, travelling for tournaments and keeping the kids on a healthy diet – it can be hectic to juggle it all. As a hockey mom of 10 years, I know firsthand the importance of establishing a routine early on. In collaboration with Holiday Inn Express, here are my tried-and-true tips for staying organized and helping your family win this hockey season.
Keep your kids fueled on the right food.
Meal prep ensures a fast and nutritious meal when the family has had a busy evening at a practice or a game. Every Sunday, I like to prepare a variety of healthy meals (meat sauce, chicken breasts, veggie burgers) and freeze them for the week. These meals can be defrosted on the morning of a game and ready within minutes. Tip for the night before a big game: choose carbohydrate-rich foods (bread, grains, legumes, dairy) and lean proteins (hummus, meat, poultry, fish) to fuel your champs!
Don’t define success and failure in terms of winning or losing.
I always tell my sons, “It’s not about being the best – it’s about how hard you try.” If your child plays their very best and loses the game, you need to help them feel like a winner! Constantly reminding them that everything comes back to effort they put in will help build self-esteem. As children, it’s important that you teach them how to win modestly and lose graciously.
Team Snap is your saving grace.
Suggest to your Team Manager that they get a Team Snap. This has been key for me to stay organized and updated on my kids’ whereabouts during the busy sports season. The app imports the hockey schedule directly into your calendar, shares everybody’s contact information, and lists out all the arena locations. A life saver! If we don’t have Team Snap that season, I enter all the games and practices into my iCAl, and send all calendar invites to my husband. That way, everyone knows when all practices are happening and where.
Chose a sports-friendly hotel.
Ensuring your kids get a restful sleep the night before a big game can be a challenge when they’re travelling away from home (and already so nervous to begin with). That’s why I like staying at a comfortable, sports-friendly hotel like Holiday Inn Express. Who doesn’t love free hot breakfast and pancakes at the push of a button? Through the hotel’s Game Changing Advantage program, you can ask for things like: team- friendly meals, access to equipment storage rooms, extra towels, and free parking for your car or bus! Check out everything the Game Changing Advantage has to offer at www.HIEXpress.com/sports.
Enforce a “No Hockey Smell” policy.
As the kids get older, they should start to take on more responsibility when it comes to their hobbies. In my house, these rules include: emptying their hockey bags after every use so the equipment doesn’t start to smell and packing their back-packs before each game. Quick tip: Go to your local retailer for storage racks that can be used to hang, store and dry equipment. You can also build your own racks – as my husband did for me. I know, I’m a lucky wife!
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by Erica Diamond, Founder of WomenontheFence.com