Image via Gapyear
Choosing the top qualities of a coach is a tough task, with each person bringing their own style to the table. Whether you’re coaching young beginners or professional athletes, and every level in between, there is certain criteria that a coach needs to meet in order to be considered successful. This goes for all sports from soccer to basketball, hockey to swimming. With a focus on these five characteristics, not only will a coach be likely to be considered successful, but that success is sure to transfer onto individual players and the team as a whole.
1. Personal Experience
You start off your coaching career with the reputation you created for yourself through your own accomplishments. Most times, a coach was once an outstanding athlete of the sport in their time. That credibility sets the stage for your coaching career.
And you must continue to love the game, even if you yourself do not play anymore. Even more so, you must love seeing others excel in the sport and love knowing that you are an addition to that success.
Coaches should convey their passion for the sport to their players, to inspire them to get the most out of their performance. You are ultimately a role model for each player on the team.
2. Be Fair
Treat each player on your team equally. Rules should apply to each individual in the same manner, with absolutely no favoritism. Letting one player get away with something and not another can cause disputes and discouragement amongst the team. This negativity can transfer directly onto the game and produce an unfavorable result.
3. Commitment & Dedication
When you sign up to be a coach, you are making a commitment to the team. You need to be working hard and focused 100% of the time, win or lose. Each player looks up to you as a leader that won’t let them down. Don’t!
Not only should you show up to every practice, but bring your full enthusiasm and demonstrate complete concern for their development. Being late or lazy will give your team the impression that they can act in those ways too. “If coach isn’t on time, why should I be?”
Show your team that this is important to you too.
4. Care for Player Safety
Showing concern for your team’s safety and well-being helps you gain trust from your players. Make sure to give an appropriate amount of water breaks to make sure everyone stays hydrated. Stay on top of the trainers to bandage all wounds and monitor any injuries to ensure proper healing. Talk to the cleaning staff to make sure that all equipment is regularly disinfected with a quality disinfectant spray.
All of these small things show the players on your team that you don’t just care about winning, but you care for them as individuals.
5. Learn From Your Mistakes
No one is perfect. There may be days that you mess up the player rotation or yell just a little too loud at the team. Make an effort to improve in these areas. Jot down notes to keep track of each athlete’s playing time so that everyone gets a chance to get into the game. Instead of just yelling, try using motivational techniques to encourage the players to work harder.