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Soccer star Abby Wambach on the questions she asks her kids after every game

As a former Olympic soccer player, Abby Wambach says she only asks her kids three questions when they leave the soccer field.
/ Source: TODAY

As a two-time Olympic gold medalist and FIFA Women's World Cup champion, Abby Wambach has plenty of pointers she could offer her stepchildren after their soccer games.

But the 40-year-old, who married author Glennon Doyle in 2017 and is helping raise three children, says as a parent, the best thing she can do is help her kids learn their own life lessons from each game.

While talking to Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush Hager about the young readers edition of her best-selling book, "Wolfpack," Wambach shared advice for parents who want to help their kids excel in sports.

"Know that your kids being in sports — the main goal is to teach them about life," Wambach added. "Your kid is probably not going to make it to the Olympics, statistically speaking."

Wambach suggests asking kids three questions when they finish playing a game.

"When our kids come off the soccer field, we ask them three things," said the retired soccer star. "Number one, we say, 'Did you have fun?' Number two — this is more of a statement — I say, 'I just love watching you play.' And then, number three, I ask them, 'Did you learn anything?'"

Wambach explained that it's important to let children make their own mistakes and fail at things they set out to accomplish.

"I don't go into breaking down the game or what I saw was wrong," she said. "That is all for them to learn."

Wambach said she created a young readers version of "Wolfpack" because as the youngest of seven children and a long-time member of soccer teams, she has "basically been in a pack" her whole life and knew kids could benefit from the lessons she's learned.

Wambach said the mentality of working together and having camaraderie helped shape her into the person she is today.

Jenna shared her feelings about reading the book with her 7-year-old daughter, Mila. She expressed appreciation for a section of Wambach's book which she called "the Red Riding Hood tale," asking the author to explain it to TODAY show viewers.

"Some of the messages that I was taught as a young kid with some of the fairy tales that are out there are messages that I've had to unlearn through the course of my life," Wambach shared.

"The whole concept (of 'Little Red Riding Hood') is to stay on the path, otherwise you're going to get eaten by the big bad wolf," Wambach explained. "But the reality is that all that's teaching our little daughters — and sons, by the way — is to not take risks."

"Anything good in my life has come from when I've actually ventured off the path."

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