52 Tools to Improve Your Coaching Skills
“Where did we ever get the crazy idea that to get children to do better, first we have to make them feel worse”?
Coaches hold tremendous influence over children. We have the power to build them up into better athletes and people or tear them down by belittling them. The choice is ours, but sometimes we have no idea that the words we say are that damaging or empowering.
The old school, "toughen them up, words don’t hurt" line of thinking in youth sports was never a viable coaching method. We never had the research to show the damage or to disprove the archaic and unscientific beliefs behind this style. Now we do. It simply does not work in the long-term, and possibly it is not effective at all. In fact, the science says negative coaching may not account for any of the “results” we see.
Choosing to build athletes is not difficult. It will be challenging, though, because it still flies in the face of “conventional” coaching standards and will most likely go against how you were coached. The key to succeeding is to remain intentional and committed.