Passion for Dance Podcast - Ep. 115 - Dance Parents
dance parents

Ep. 115 – Dance Parents

Episode 115: Dance Parents are Terrible! But here's how you can cultivate a positive relationship with your dance parents


Summary: Do you have dance moms and dance dads at your studio or school that drive you completely crazy? I know crazy sport parents can be super challenging, and I’ve heard coaches say things like, “I love everything about teaching dance except the parents.”

In today’s episode, we’ll be talking all about dance parents with my guest, Dr. Megan Babkes Stellino. Megan is actually my academic mentor. She was my advisor when I was getting my PhD, and she was the one who encouraged me to research with dancers, which was still relatively new at the time. So much of my love and knowledge for sport psychology came from Megan, and I’m really excited to share her with you. Megan is an expert on sport parents. She has this incredible way of helping us understand where parents are coming from, but also give the coaches and the teachers some practical advice on how to develop positive relationships where those dance parents respect you as the coach but can stay firmly in their lane as the parent.

In the episode, Dr. Megan and I talk about how you can change your parent handbooks for the better, how parents often believe that winning and fun are the same thing, and they also believe that effort can only be seen through trophies and public recognition. Of course, we know better. As you’ll hear, we had so much to share that this will actually be part one, and we’ll come back with part two soon.

The majority of dance parents out there don't know to look for anything else, and then they tie their identity to what is visible on behalf of their child’s performance.

– Megan Babkes Stellino

Key Highlights –

  • [5m 42s] – First Myth: Parent Handbooks
  • [19m 20s] – Second Myth: How Parents Talk About Winning and Losing
  • [28m 51s] – Third Myth: Sport Mom Identity

Resources –

Connect with Megan and Mindful Sport Parenting: 

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Leave a voice note with your dance parent problems:

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Be sure to visit me on Instagram @dr.chelsea.pierotti for more mental skills advice for dancers

Word of mouth is still the best way the show can grow! If you have a dance friend out there who you think would benefit, please share this episode with them!


Megan Babkes Stellino

Dr. Megan Babkes Stellino is the Founder and Executive Director of Mindful Sport Parenting. As a former NCAA DI collegiate gymnast, she combines her 20+ years of experience as a Professor, researcher and educator in the Psychology of Sport, Exercise & Physical Activity focused on studying and teaching about social influences, motivation and developmental aspects of youth sport WITH her 16 years, thus far, as a Mom of two boys who are competitive athletes, to create this evidence-based community of practice to make navigating the SPORT PARENTING journey one that is informed and guided with purpose, intention and clarity.

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