Resilience building

I went to pick up my daughter from refereeing the other day and I got to watch the end of an under 12 boys’ soccer game. The parents stood eagerly on the sideline, the coaches were even more enthusiastic as they shouted instructions.

Within 5 minutes of seeing the game, I heard one boy on the field yell at his teammate “Don’t kick it across the goal”. The boy being screamed at was a good player, he was able to stop the ball, control it and had a great kick. The only issue was that he was kicking it across the goal instead of up the field.

The second time it happened, the same boy shouted again, but louder with a distinct tone of disgust. Even though the opposition didn’t score, the other boy felt totally dejected. I watched helplessly whilst he sobbed on the field as his teammate ran obliviously to the other end of the field chasing the ball.

I thought ‘poor thing’, I wonder what I would do if that was my son. However, I stopped thinking that, something changed my paradigm. I thought to myself, ‘this is what life is like’, this is exactly what my articles are about, ‘sport mirrors life’!

There will be people in your life, sometimes people on your own team, who will not treat you the right way. They will be quick to criticise and slow to praise. They will focus on your weaknesses and play down your strengths. Australians are known for the ‘tall poppy syndrome’. Some will think they are better than you, even when they are not. But at the end of the day, you have to keep on going. Focus on your goals and what you can control. Don’t let other people get in your head, be focused and stay positive.

In this same game, a player in the opposing team had accidently raised a hand to the ball in the box. It was a penalty shot, they got it and won 1-0, right before the final whistle blew. I saw the child crouched over in tears. Blaming himself for the loss even though it was a team effort, with 10 other boys on the field and they had played for 49-minutes of the 50 minute game. I dare say, he will be more conscious to keep his hands down next time.

Life is like that too, you make a mistake, learn your lesson and move on.

I have never said sport is pretty, in fact it can be quite ugly. However, there are life skills to be learnt. Sport can build resilience, which is particularly important for our future generations who are used to getting what they want, when they want it.

Yvette Audet

Yvette Audet

Sport has been an integral part of my life, both work and personal. I grew up with sport, met my husband through sport and now as a mother, am involved more than ever in sport!

As a trainer and consultant in the industry I work with sporting groups and councils to create community facilities and partnerships aimed to increase sport participation.

I have created a range of articles from the perspective of a SPORTING MUM. The articles relate life skills and messages that we can get from being involved in sport. It’s uncanny how Sport can mirror life.


Involved in gymnastics, netball and athletics from an early age, Yvette experienced being part of a team as well as the unrelentless discipline in individual sport – in particular her Heptathlon days.

First became a mum in 2005 and remembers having the inner debate of how long should I play netball while pregnant? Doing quick breastfeeds in between netball games and hoping her uterus wouldn’t feel like falling out when she jumped for the ball.

Funny anecdotes aside, she has worked in the sport and recreation industry for almost 30 years and holds several certificates and degrees around the management and training of sport, community recreation, aquatics and fitness.

Through her various roles in profit and non-profit sectors, she has helped plan for programs, events and facilities to help get communities active through sport and recreation.