When I first started to coach youth sports it was to be with my kids. I was looking for a way to spend more time with them and share a passion for sports. Since that point, I have found so many reasons to coach youth sports beyond just spending more time with my kids. So if you are on the fence about volunteering to coach your kid’s team, I hope this post help you see the reason to coach youth sports and get you in the game.
The Rent You Pay
Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth. – Muhammad Ali
When I first had children, it changed the way I looked at life. It change the way that I looked at how I worked, what I did with my free time, and what I wanted in life. I wanted to be an example to them and show, not tell them, how to live a life for others.
As they got older and started to show interest in some of my passions, sports, I jumped in head first coaching. Initially, it was because I loved sports and wanted to have fun. As the season went on, full transparency I will be 40 very soon, I saw how coaching was serving these kids. It was my way to give back to the community.
I am a believer that your time on this earth is limited. You can not take your toys and things with you to the next life. So, the things that you do should help others and this is one of the major reasons I coach youth sports. It is my way to give back to the community, serve others, and pay my rent while on this planet.
Teach The Love For The Game
Growing up I played just about every sport under the sun. My friends and I would spend hours outside playing football, basketball, baseball, and soccer. As a youth sports coach, I have made it my mission to teach the love of the games we play. Every practice is a chance to help teach the love for sports and life.
Coaching tip. One of the best ways I have found to keep kids engaged in the practice and build this love for the game is to play games versus putting kids in lines. Games are fun and enforce the love for the game. Lines give kids the opportunity to get distracted or lose interest in what you are doing. Games over lines.
I coach youth sports because I want to teach my Future Champions the love for the game.
Kids Need a Positive Role Model
Over the past 8 years, I have coached hundreds of kids. 99% of the kids I coach have a great Dad, Mom, or Guardian. They have a great teacher at school. They have great role models in their life. However, there is a special place in your athletes’ lives for their coach. Athletes all look up to their coaches of all ages.
Bill Graham said, “A coach will impact more people in one year than the average person will in an entire lifetime.”
As a youth sports coach, you will make an impact on the lives of your Future Champions. For many of your athletes, this is the best part of their day. It is the part of their day they look forward to every week.
As a youth sports coach, you have the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of these kids. Come with a great attitude and remember that sometimes you are teaching more than just the skill on the field, you are teaching these kids life lessons they need to be successful in life.
Help Overcome Fears
Personal coaching story and maybe one of my favorites to date.
I was coaching a pre-kinder girls’ soccer team. Many of the girls had never played before and some of them were a bit nervous. Gianna was one of these girls. At our first practice, she did not want to play. She watched the first practice with Mom and that was totally fine because she was showing interest. After practice, Gianna and I had a chat. She told me she was scared and I let her know I would be there every step of the way.
Fast forward to our first game. She reluctantly made it to our sideline. I put her in first to shake off the nerves. I stood right next to her the entire game, while she was playing. She needed a safety net and that is fine.
The second half came around, I grabbed her hand and we walked the pitch together. We moved with the ball, we even kicked the ball together once or twice. I told her how proud I was and how brave she became that day. I know a touching story right?
Together, we overcame her fear. Together, we learned a very valuable lesson on the pitch. She will be able to tackle more in life because of this moment as a very young child.
The moral of the story, when we play sports we can overcome our fears. We can learn how to face bigger challenges and opponents than we ever thought possible.
Coaches, it is our job to help these kids overcome their fears. Don’t just write them off because they do not want to play because most of the time they do, they are just not ready.
Help Kids Learn Valuable Life Lessons
To this day I contribute my time playing sports to the success I have in life now. Not just on the job, but building relationships in life. Sports taught me how to be a teammate, how to overcome my fears, how to work hard, and on and on.
It is now my purpose in life to help my player learn these valuable lessons. Youth sports story coming up.
I was coaching a girl’s 3rd and 4th-grade team. 70% of the team had never played before. We had a few returning players, but we needed to learn a lot of skills.
We lost our first 2 games by a total of 11 goals. It was going to be a long season, or so I thought. In the league, we play there is a tournament at the end. There are typically three brackets, bronze, silver, and gold.
As we got to tournament time, we need to pull things together and win a bunch of games. We were on the fringe of playing in the gold bracket and needed to win our last game to make it into the gold bracket.
I challenged the girls to dig deep. Look inside and really determine if they wanted it. They did and went out and got the win. We made the gold bracket, something I did not think possible at the beginning of the season.
We get to the tournament and played our best with the best team in our league. The results were not what we really wanted, but the perseverance to make the gold bracket was a life lesson.
After the season, we all got together and talked about their accomplishments. We talked about how we did something despite it being difficult. We played our hearts out. We could have won the silver bracket, but we would rather play for gold and come up short. We put a goal out there and we accomplished it.
These are the life lessons that we teach as a coach. These are the lessons that I live for and hope every season we can teach our players one life lesson that will stick with them. The ability to learn these life lessons is important not only for the short-term but the kids’ long-term success in life.
Proof Read here – You Want To Spend Time with Your Kids
8 years ago, I started coaching because I wanted a way to spend quality time with my kids. It was a way for me to be able to spend quality time doing something that they enjoy.
I remember one-time heading to practice when my son was young. He said something that changed my entire outlook on coaching youth sports. He was having an off day, maybe he was a little tired, or maybe he was not feeling good. He told me that he really did not want to go to practice, but knew he was going to be able to hang out with me for a few hours. He told me that he loved the time together and looked forward to practicing every week because it was our time. It was a special time. He told me he enjoyed sharing practice time because everyone could play and have fun.
From that point on, I have always overcommitted to my kids and their sports. It is the reason I coach a club soccer team, a baseball team, and whatever any of my other kids want to play. They might even have me helping coach cross-country.
Coaching has given me time with my kids that I will never forget, never get back, and always cherish.
You Are Fun Loving
We all see the coaches on the field that are yelling at their players to try harder. They want to win so much that they take the fun out of sports. Don’t get me wrong, as a coach I do enjoy winning our share of games, but it is not the only reason I coach.
Here is the truth that I have found when coaching youth sports. The kids are coming out because they love playing. They love being with their friends. They show up to have fun.
Coaching for me is fun because I get to hang out with the kids and be part of the game with them. It is not always about winning, but having fun while doing it. I try to have swimming parties, bring popsicles when we win, or just play games that the kids are going to enjoy. It is about more than just winning games.
Remember, most of the kids you coach are really only showing up to get that snack and juice box after the game. Remember this and have some fun out there. One last point on having fun. When you are having fun, the kids are going to listen more. They will accept your coaching and learn the game. So, keep it fun at practice.
Coaching tip: Get in there with your team. Play with them, do the drills, and show them how playing sports can be so much fun. You will get more effort from them.
You Believe That Youth Sports Should be Different
I believe that youth sports should be different. I believe that there is a way to make youth sports better. I believe that the development of the players is the most important part of the game. As a travel soccer coach and a recreational coach, I know there is a better way to coach our kids that will have an impact on their lives.
I believe there is a middle ground between what we call recreational sports and travel sports. I believe there is a different methodology for youth sports that needs to be developed. I do not believe that all kids should be pushed into travel sports until they are ready. I also believe that most recreational leagues are not teaching Future Champions the right way to play the game.
I believe that there should be a common ground between travel sports and recreational sports. I hope that you are able to come along the journey of youth sports with District Champ to build these new leagues.
Reasons to Coach Youth Sports
There you have it, these are the reasons to coach youth sports. Youth sports are important to all of us. They help us become better people, become better athletes, and teach us so much about life. I hope that these reasons to coach youth sports help you get in the game and make an impact.