Monday, December 31, 2012

Modern coaching - win the kids for life - not a game ;D


Floorballcentral likes the big idea.

But sometimes the very small coaching is the most big idea. So this post will rather briefly touch base on some very basic ideas related to the smaller everyday kids or youth coaching we have experienced.. Not much Floorball in this post, and not much the big ideas, but a few hands-on insights in #youthsports.

Lesson one: Resources - If you end up as the only coach on a sports team - bad luck and no its not good enough. You must involve at least one or two other parents on your team - because this is about your own development as well - as the full team development. No, the other coaches should not do the snack list or be the team parent - you must find other people for that. And hey, this is not about adding two assistant coaches. You must create a full coaching team with -2-3 adults where the kids feel full respect for the full coaching team. Yes, it is OK if some coaches has specific functions like the defense coach, or the goalie coach etc - but no no-one is an assistant, OK.

Lesson two: Empowerment - You are coaching since you want to empower the Kids and not You - yourself. This means that winning should never be at focus - your job is to make all kids better at your sport - and nothing else. This means that you must always play the full team and may never top the team with your “best” players. This way you hurt some weaker players that next year might bloom out as even better players - to exclude weaker players, well you hurt them, but also the sport you love - since many kids will leave the sport because of you..

Lesson tree: Knowledge - it is a good thing if you know your sport - but it is even better if you know LTAD, never heard about it - we think one of the best sources is here http://www.canadiansportforlife.ca/

Lesson four: Efficiency - Then as you practice try to avoid anyone standing waiting in lines - pick moving exercises where everyone is engaged as much as possible with puck, ball (or what game you now do) contact as possible per time unit. Think Kaizen - Japanese efficient productivity - do as much as possible with as small resources you can.

Lesson five: Courage - skip the rules - invent rules and remember incentives in any “game” works much better as “penalties”. If you were exposed to many penalties as a kid yourself - well let the next generation experience incentives instead in their games - it just works better - trust us.

Lesson six: Motivation - if your team have fun - they are motivated. Root out all negative stuff as complaints, bullying tendencies and similar... Remember to always talk to you team about such things and be with them - do not let them be alone in the locker room etc.

Lesson seven: Teamwork - No chain is stronger than the weakest link. A new idea we have in this area is that the best coach should be devoted to the weakest kids, then to define what is the best coach might be a hard pick. But the attention to put the most skilled coach with the weakest players - ought to secure a stronger team. Give the best help you have to them that needs it the most... it Just makes sense.
And na the best coach should not coach the offensive line - as the normally do.. They should try different things as in.....

Lesson eight: Flexibility - All players should as youth players try on all positions. Do not put the fat kid in the goal - let em’ all try it. Rotate them and ask them what they like. Kids and coaches together have much more computational power than any one single coach ever might have and this could maybe expand into two more lessons Computational power and Communications - but we dive into that another day..

So will, the team win now?
No, that is not the point and it is not important - the point is to make all players better and keep em’ in sports. If you can do that then the kids are the best there is and you are the best coach they ever will have. Winning a game or a league - is peanuts to the real and larger cause... to win them for life.

One more thing - we just heard from a hockey team close to us - that parents chip in 5 bucks to some kids that score a goal.
This goes fully against most knowledge related to intrinsic and extrinsic motivation and if the parents wants their kids to quit hockey why not pay them “a grand” for each goal scored instead?
Wild man - wild things, that has nothing to do with how to build a team nor an athlete...
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Caution

Research suggest that eye-injuries are more common in Floorball as compared to Tennis, but less common as compared to Squash (similar to Racquetball).
To minimize this risk of injury Floorballcentral recommend: Use certified protective eye-wear (mandated in many European areas for the youth). Do not lay down on the court. Follow the rules strict on stick height.

Also if you get addicted to this sport - do not blame us!