Coaching is also one of those Midrand jobs where your professional effectiveness is almost always narrowly measured by something that is very often totally out of your control: winning and losing.
Sports coaching can be defined as the process of motivating, guiding and training an individual in preparation for any sporting hobby, career, or event.
Sports coaches and performance consultants are increasingly employing questioning as an avenue to nurture growth and development. Opposed to more traditional approaches to teaching where a coach, typically, provided all of the answers and simply instructed athletes where to go and what to do, a more humanistic and contemporary approach is to facilitate learning and development
If your child plays youth sports you are responsible for making sure the adults around them have their best interest in mind. Identifying the right coach or team for your child can be intimidating especially if you're not knowledgeable about the sport, but this article will help you take charge and make the best decision.
Know Your Kid
One of the problems for parents is that if we are doing our jobs correctly, we actually know less and less about our children as they get older. Ideally we want them to be independent and to think for themselves, while knowing we're there for them when needed. By the time they are teenagers (when they naturally become distant), we hardly know them at all. But almost every parent knows their child's personality, so that's where we'll start.
What types of coaches have gotten the most out of your child?
Does your child respond better to being challenged and pushed on a regular basis, or do they need a more positive, supportive environment to give their best?
Your Child's Athletic Happiness Depends On You!
Most sports programs have a mixture of coaching personalities on their staff. But it is the head coach's personality that will determine whether your child has a negative or positive experience. This is the one area that you can't simply leave up to your child to decide, you have to be proactive and decide what's best for them.
Many parents believe the hard charging authoritative coach is what kids need to play at their best, so teams with those types of coaches are the ones on which they place their kids. What they tend to overlook is that at the youth sports level they are usually on-hand to intervene when that type of coaching begins to overwhelm their child.
- Has your child come home crying after practice or a game?
- Have they ever said they wanted to quit because the coaches kept berating or singling them out?
- Do they complain about the number, length or intensity of practice and workouts?
If the answer is yes to any of these questions, even though your child seems to improve under this type of coaching, they may not do so well with that type of coach as they move up from youth, to high school, and possibly the collegiate level. You won't be there to smooth things out for them once they reach the high school level. The high school coach has no obligation to play them.
There are too many other important aspects that make a school a good fit for your child to move them because of sports, even if they have the talent to earn a sport scholarship. Things like friends, academic opportunities, safety, even proximity have to be considered.
There are some things you can control.
Where you can control things is in selecting a club or travel sports team for your child. Talk to other parents and coaches, but make sure you make a decision based on your own observations.
Too often people get enamored with a winning coach or program, and suddenly everyone is parroting everyone else about how great the coach or program is for fear of being labeled a dope or having a lack of sophistication or understanding of the game because they can't see how wonderful that coach or program is. That's nonsense; go with your gut feeling.
Find out when the team you are considering has a game. You and your child should attend together. Watch the coaches' demeanor especially after one of the players has made an obvious mistake. Listen to the parents in the stands, are they supporting all of the kids, or just their own.
Look at the players playing your child's position; do they play better, worse, the same as your child?
What about the style of play, will it work well for your child?
Then ask your child what they think about the team and coach.
Finally, go early or stay around for a few more games and compare other teams to the one you're thinking about joining.
Just something to think about.
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