Young Athlete Program

For children ages 8-12 (and their parents)

Weekend after weekend, elementary and middle school age kids (and their parents) are spending more time at the field, around the pool, and in the gym.

Many kids thrive in these competitive sports environment, when they get to spend their free time playing their favorite sports with their friends.

But, in this new professionalized landscape of youth athletics, many kids love for the game is being overshadowed by oversized pressures to perform.

At Greenepsych, our clinical and sport psychologists, specialize in helping you and your youngster manage:

  • pre-game jitters
  • negative self talk
  • anger issues
  • being a good teammate
  • fear of making mistakes
  • over-worrying about what others are doing
  • setting appropriate goals
  • sleep difficulties
  • decisions to continue to play or stop altogether
  • sport specialization issues
  • under- or over-confidence
  • responding to successes and failures

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Our Goals

  • Create a comfortable environment

    Our experts teach kids from elementary school through middle school about playing without fear of failure. We form a trusting partnership with our young clients so they feel comfortable sharing their sports goals, worries, and experiences with us.

  • Teach kids (and their parents)

    We help kids and parents understand what mindset is helpful to bring to the field, and, conversely, what contributes to kids over-stressing about their next game. We teach everyone how to find joy in the opportunity to play sports, whether recreationally or competitively.

  • Provide psycho-education for kids

    The goal is to help young athletes and their parents appreciate that nerves and jitters are part of the game, and when dealt with correctly, athletes can enjoy the rush of adrenaline as they get ready to play. Sometimes meeting with both parents and kids together can help everyone understand the best ways to work together to ensure sports remains a healthy outlet, and opportunity to improve our fitness, flexibility and strength.

  • Educate parents about how to “positively push” your child

    Sport parents want to help, and our experts teach parents what to say (and not to say) to help encourage family harmony and the possibility that your son or daughter will stick with their sport for a long time. We will give you the optimal way to respond to your own emotions and those of your son or daughter who may have some issues with how you are responding to their on-the-field ups and downs.


Under the direction of Dr. Mitchell Greene,
and guided by Lauren Ruhl, LPC

• A safe place for kids to express the challenges of playing under pressure, as well as helping kids communicate more effectively with coaches, figure out what they want from their sport, or simply enjoy the game more.

• An opportunity for parents to talk with professionals who understand the youth sports world, and how to raise kids who want to play recreationally or competitively.

• Multitude of ideas for kids and parents to see the big picture, so that sports can help teach everyone in the family how better to manage mistakes, deal with expectations, boost confidence, set goals, and work as part of a team.


Meet Lauren

Lauren is a therapist and Mental Performance Consultant. Her specialty is in helping injured athletes comes from her own season-ending injury experience as a college basketball player. She has had surgeries for an ACL, MCL and a meniscal tear. Lauren knows how much her rehabilitation was aided by her efforts to build a strong, resilient mindset. Lauren's message is clear: she does not want athletes to feel like they have to manage their injury alone.

Optimizing your injury recovery includes developing the best mental skills for you, and your current circumstance. Lauren will help you develop the tools to increase pain tolerance, decrease stress and anxiety levels, cope with isolation and identity issues, and better manage adversity. Lauren knows firsthand that you can build confidence and make a successful return to your sport.

To hear more about Lauren’s services at Greenepsych, or to schedule an initial free consult, please email her at or call (484) 854-3446.

contact lauren ruhl