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Yamaguchi to Parents: Back Off

Good Housekeeping's Jen Singer snagged an interview with Kristi Yamaguchi because Singer has professed a love for Wii Fit, while Yamaguchi is hosting Nickelodeon's Wii Fit Family Challenge. But Singer asked Yamaguchi how parents can ensure their kids are successful in a sport without pushing them too much.

Kristi replied, "Growing up as an athlete, I started skating very young. My parents didn't know anything about the sport, so they went with the flow. I had two great coaches who gave great advice and gave guidelines for my parents. My parents let the coaches dictate what was going on on the ice. As a parent, you want your child to be successful and try 100%. But if you give them values, it will work out."

Then she added: "Step back and let the sport be their own. Let them think I'm doing this because I like it."

I'm sure that's difficult for certain personality types. I hope if I have kids I'll be able to step back and realize it's their life and I can't control them too much. I'm sure this is a really important lesson in something like figure skating where parents are laying out so much money and want to make sure that it's worth it. But the child enjoying the sport will hopefully be enough!