Why Your Players Shouldn’t “Look Up to You”

The first time you go out on the field with your new team can be a little unnerving if you’ve never coached before. You may be an important person in your community and a leader in business, but the prospect of facing a group of six year-old boys and girls has your mouth dry and your palms sweaty. The meeting you had with the CEO at lunch was a breeze, but this? This is intimidating.
The best advice I have for you when coaching small children is to make yourself small as well. When you talk to kids individually, or in team meetings, take a knee. Take two knees. You can even sit in a circle with your players so that you’re more like one of them. Too many coaches ignore this simple technique, consequently, their players always have the feeling they are being “talked down to”, instead of coached. The younger your players are, the more time you should spend on their level. As you know, most things are already kind of big and scary to kids this age. Do what you can to make the coach less big and scary, and they’ll listen, behave and perform better.
The best thing about this technique is how it benefits you. Because when you get down to your players’ level and begin to feel more closely connected with them, you see things from their perspective, and many of the barriers and fears you both may have had in the beginning disappear.

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Take it seriously, but have fun

There are many kids you’ll coach who don’t have the same skill level as your son or daughter. Though you are probably fairly involved in your child’s sports activities, (as evidenced by the fact that you’ve volunteered to be a coach or manager), many parents are, for whatever reason, not as committed. You’ll have kids on your team who have never played before, or who don’t have as much passion as others. This means that there will be many boys and girls to whom you will be the first instructor, mentor, and coach. In many cases these kids will remember you for the rest of their lives. The rewards for managing a team at this level are many, but the responsibility is great. Keep in mind that, above all else, your mission is to make each child want to come back and play again next year, and you’ll look back on your season as a success, regardless of wins or losses.

Where Did “Coach” Originate?

I find if interesting to look at the origins of the word, “Coach”. The word originates in England, from “coach” as in “carriage”; a vehicle that transports one from where they are now, to where they want to be. University students in 19th century England likened their instructors to carriages, “guiding” the students through their classes and exams. The word in that sense first appears in the written record in 1848. The “instructor” sense was then applied to sports trainers by 1885. If you hold the belief that your job as a youth sports coach is to transport the children put in your charge from where they are now to where they want to be, you’ll be on your way to great success.

So You’ve Decided to Coach the Team, (or have been talked in to it)

You are about to embark upon a journey that will be fun, challenging, and at times frustrating, but in the end, exciting and rewarding. There will be times you’ll have your patience tested and your nerves frazzled, but along the way you’ll laugh a lot and maybe even once or twice wipe a wet eye. You’ll win some games and lose some games, but you’ll also experience the unparalleled reward of watching young players develop skills you’ve taught them. And through it all, you’ll learn as much as you teach. Here is a link to an article describing my greatest moment as a coach. I hope you have many similar experiences

What Makes You a Good Coach?

Why are so many parents reluctant to volunteer to coach their son or daughter’s youth sports team? I believe a large reason is that they are afraid of appearing incompetent. Let’s face it, being the coach is putting yourself out there on display in a very public fashion. And since most only measure success in terms of winning or losing, the tension and fear of failure are heightened. However, there is a single, easily attainable goal that any coach can achieve, which would result in their season being judged a success. Here is an article that explains what that goal is, and how to accomplish it.

Why Did We Develop CoachDeck?

CoachDeck was created out of a deep passion for teaching and coaching. I am raising four children who are all actively involved in numerous sports and I see young players of various skill levels and abilities. And just as I see a wide range of ability level in young athletes, I see an equally broad spectrum in the talents of their coaches. Because for the most part, the coaches in youth sports across America are just moms and dads with their hearts in the right place, but with no formal training, and in most cases, no real roadmap or plan. CoachDeck is designed to provide you, the coach, with that formal roadmap. The purpose of our product is to guide you along your journey of becoming a great coach and to give you the confidence you need to succeed.

Why Do You Coach and What Are Your Goals?

There are many different reasons, some better than others, that people get into coaching. Some do it for the love of sports and because they would like to share their knowledge with others. Some coach for more selfish reasons, because they want to make sure that their sons or daughters have as many advantages as possible. Others sign up for the first time because they see other coaches who are in so far over their heads that they’re sure they would be an improvement. And some people end up coaching because there are simply no other volunteers willing to take the job and they heroically “step up to the plate” and volunteer to carry the equipment bag to practices and games.

Whether you’re coaching for one of these reasons or a combination, whether you’ve ever coached before or not, and regardless of how many years and at what level you’ve played the game yourself, you’ve been given a great responsibility, opportunity, and privilege.

If any of this talk of “responsibility” makes you nervous, don’t let it. It’s mostly a lot of fun. And though there are some fundamentals you’ll want to know and teach to your team, its not that complicated. The four basic cornerstones to this season should be:
1. Keep it safe
2. Make it fun
3. Teach fundamentals
4. Make every player want to come back
That’s it. If you can keep those four goals in mind through every practice and game, you’ll have done a great job.