As a cheerleading coach, parents can be your most helpful friends or your worst enemies. If you're able to establish good relationships with the parents, they might be able to help with the team -- anything from organizing fund-raising activities to providing water and snacks for competitions is valuable.
However, parents can have their own ideas about coaching and might not approve of your methods. If you don't try to address the problem of a grumpy parent, it might fester and just get worse. Experienced coach and author Leslie Wilson has dealt with her fair share of unhappy parents and has a few suggestions. She says that, as a coach, you should simply stay confident in the face of complaints and remind the parent that you're qualified and designated to make the decisions for the team [source: Wilson]. She maintains that this should help the parent to respect your confidence.
You can avoid problems by starting things off right. At a parents meeting before the season begins, inform parents of your goals and rules for the kids, as well as safety precautions (and unavoidable risks involved). Keep communicating with the parents throughout the season with updates or even follow-up meetings.
For more advice on parents, including overprotective and competitive parents, take a look at "How to Handle Parents While Coaching."