It’s game season and guess what’s on everybody’s mind? Players, athletes, coaches, parents, all have this one motive: to have a great game season. But winning is not just the moment of truth, it is the overall attitude that a team meticulously practices every day, whether on the field or out of it. It is about how well the team bonds, how open and clear the communication is, how motivated everyone in the team is (including the coach), and many more such factors.
Here are a few points that can help a team achieve the ultimate – a great game season.
Coaches: Once the players are selected and the team is in place, coaches need to conduct two induction meetings, one with the parents and one with the players. Apart from introducing them to the protocol and field etiquettes, coaches must also initialize them with the culture they need in the team. Emphasis should be laid on communication and inter-personal bonding.
Coaches address to parents should specifically include the objective of the sports coaching: will the team focus on game basics or will the players be driven into competitive games? There should be clear understanding set for communication and clear defined parameters stating what constitutes healthy feedback/suggestion and what would cross over as interference? The onus of nurturing sportsman spirit would lie on parents as well. Encourage them to set right examples in front of the child. Also encourage parents to be a part of the team, volunteer in helping out with carpooling, snacks etc. A community-like environment can actually be very beneficial for the players and healthy for the coach.
Parents: Parents have to understand that the onus of child’s sports development is not on the coach entirely. The lifestyle of the kids, what they eat, do they get adequate sleep, are the stress-free, all these factors are as important in a child’s sports life. Parents can ensure that with these things that child is taken care of. More importantly, parents need to be careful in handling game defeat because that will set an example in front of the child. Parents also need to understand the importance of trusting the coach. If parents keep interfering with the coach’s work and refuse to cooperate with the coach, it will definitely affect the game adversely.
Seamless communication, cooperation, bonding beyond the game, attitude beyond the field, motivated coach and parents and not just the players, these are a few things that go a long way to ensure the team wins, not just matches but seasons.