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Importance of Quality High School Sports Coaching

Every parent knows that an inactive lifestyle, diet and most of all low levels of physical activity affects the well-being of children’s health and academic performance. Regular participation in physical activity offers young people a confidence boost while it also establishes fulfilling, healthy lifestyles for the future.

Most adults first memory of partaking in sports is whilst at primary school, while their high school sports experiences often coloured their attitude towards sports and staying fit for the rest of their lives. While primary sports coaching, normally offered by volunteers including parents or teachers, start young children’s interest in team sports, specialised physical and sports coaches, understanding the complexities of sports performance, diet, and exercise programs are part of high school sports coaching.

Primary school sport coaches passionate about sports-development are crucial when it comes to increasing participation amongst less active children, which builds the foundation for both an active lifestyle and the wish to compete in high school. Several high schools also benefit from volunteer services offered by professional rugby, tennis, netball or soccer players, parents with a history of sports achievements and local gym instructors.

The shift from Sports Star to High School Coach

The transition professional sports participants to a high school coach are quite a popular proposition, and 50% of sports enthusiasts that have made the shift shared that their decision came even before going to college. The benefits are endless since these coaches participated in high school athletics, which offered them a first-hand opportunity to acquire impressions and informal images about coaching and the change to observe their own coaches.

Irrespective of whether a neophyte started as a head or assistant coach, the collective understanding and technical aspects of coaching are most importantly, required by listening and observing more experienced coaches. It is a combination of sports participation and observing other coaches that offers a collective understanding of the sports coach occupation. For most novice coaches the reality shock come in the form of fully understanding the long hours, the importance of the coaching culture and hard work as well as the realisation that being successful at high school coaching takes an immense amount of time. Once the first season of coaching nearer its ends, both the internalisation and symbolic transformation of the institutional expectations occurs as the novice chaos have a much better understanding of what it is all about.

High school sports coaches play a major role in sports development, their relationships with young athletes influence psychosocial outcomes and skill development of sports participation.

Children’s Coaches – Underpaid and unqualified

There are millions who participate in physical activity and sports daily. In Europe, there is an estimated nine million coaches that coach men, women and children who engage in sports, whether amateur, semi-pro or professional. When you compare this to the number of teachers in Europe, coaches almost double their numbers. Many of those are working with children of varying ages to help them learn particular sports, develop skills and achieve their goals.

However, recent studies have shown many of those trusted with the job of coaching lack the qualifications with many being completely unqualified to take on this responsibility. Those studies have demonstrated further most do not hold any certificates or have skills that qualify them to coach young children or any other for that matter. When you consider the number of coaches, coaching could be classified as one of the largest employers in Europe as many are paid for their services. One of the problems is the social statue children’s coaches are given as they are considered essential in helping children grow as individuals and as athletes.

Underpaid and unappreciated

What is important however to recognise is that millions of those coaches for so without any remuneration and volunteer their time to help the kids and community sports teams. However, ones that are valued and have credentials ware beginning to see that change. This is thanks in part to new policy’s across Europe that focus on the development of an appropriately educated workforce of coaches by evaluating how people are trained for their respective coaching responsibilities.

Some countries, such as Lithuania and Hungary have laws in place that require all those in a position of coach to graduate with a state-recognised certificate, license or diploma in order to act as a coach. Generally, most countries have zero regulations in place that govern the qualifications of coaches and leave that up to the individual sporting associations to manage. The problem with this is, that has been shown to be flawed, and training on how to coach, how to handle children based on individual skills, abilities, and ages is needed to help children maximise their potential.

Future of Coaching

The future of coaching is expected to see improvements in the training models and requirements associations set for those interested in coaching. This will include those who are in paid positions as well as those volunteering their time. One of the concerns is it could lead to a smaller pool of people willing to go through the process, especially those who are doing so without remuneration.

How those programs will be developed, or whether they will be adopted as a standard across most sports leagues will have to be seen. The hope is that all those with a shared interest in sports, and the value it not only beings to those who participate, but also those who live in communities, will come together for the greater good of coaching and the benefits it provides.

Coaching is more than a job – It’s a calling

Everyone knows the textbook definition of being a coach, but have you ever truly stopped to ponder what this “job” means and entails? One of the beauties of coaching means that you have taken on the decision to fully invest yourself in a carer that is one of the most powerful, influential, and amazing ones that a person can choose to have. Not everyone is made out to be a coach. But the people that who are coaches are doing something that is more than a profession – this job and its title hold way more power than most people realise.

For starts, coaches must work with young athletics who are all going through their own personal trials and tribulation. As a coach it’s your job and responsibility to guide them into becoming the best versions of themselves and learning two of the most amazing games: the sport itself and the wonders of life. Coaches have the power to truly change these athletes by making them incredible at their sport, but almost more importantly – making them even better and wiser people while under your watch. Coaches must remember that at the end of the day – you are a leader of a team of willing participants who admire you and whom they entrust themselves with.

Don’t forget the depth of this responsibility

Coaching is known to be one of the most difficult professions a person can choose to go through as they must work with an array of aspiring athletes in high stress and public situations. Coaches must keep scores, which means that every week, they are getting judged – hell, even on a day to day basis based on the performance of some kids who are trying to learn and perfect a sport. Coaches must go through having people judge every action they make regarding how well the players play, how much playtime they have, along with where they play at.

Along with the judgment, coaches must always be aware of how much power their words have to affect their players – in both a positive and negative light. While facing moments where success is praised having to take calls from officials, no matter how good or bad is part of the job. Coaches must always think about what they have to say to ensure that their players are not falling into a negative slope of doubt. Especially considering how coaches no control over what gets remembered, forgotten or overlooked.

Another part of coaching that is often overlooked is the constant dealing with parents. While many of these encounters are wonderful, enjoyable, and full of a pleasant conversation about the player’s successful, failures, and things the must work on. Others can be quite intense and negative. The negative ones are known to have unrealistic expectations of their child making it and will blame the coach, and everyone else if their child is not where they suspect they should be. The best thing a coach can do is try to lower their anger and negativity and teach them to empower their kids. Many people seem to minimise that coaches serve as a positive role model for all players, and that is especially common in situations where the parents have lost sight of it.

The facts of coaching

Research regarding the impact that coaches have, alongside teachers, transformed kids extensively over the last few decades. Nowadays, we know that some of the popular teaching methods used decades ago were unsavoury and did not produce the results that were desired. It’s a fact; fear methods do not work as well with helping a kid become more successful than loving and nurturing them. As many kids, today will say, just because we went over it does not mean that we learned it and can retain it. In reality – having practices filled with mistakes that can be learned from are the best ways a coach can teach a player the realities of life. At the end of the day, coaching is about being a person filled with: passion, understanding, empathy, and consistency. Coaches must model the behaviour and mindset that they would want their players to follow – on and off the field.

How to Prevent Injuries When on the Ice

Accidents are bound to happen when playing a sport on ice, especially ones that are bad enough to lead to hockey players getting injured. Hockey is known for being one of the most physically demanding sports that takes extra concentration to not slip and fall on the ice. Though, when these slip-ups do happen, they can take a higher toll on the players’ bodies, no matter the seriousness of the fall. Including possible collisions with other players, occasional hitting with the hockey sticks or even the pucks, getting hurt while on the ice is something all players eventually go through.

Though sometimes, its common for players to have moments where that fell random pains for no reasons. These are the isolated cases of unusual knee pains, lower back issues, or even uncomfortable groin strains. Eventually, athletes are going to have to miss a few games if these minor issues are taken care of properly, especially considering that these minor issues can turn into major ones if left untreated.

Instead of waiting for these little pains to become major ones that requires even more work, lets change the mindset and start handling issues before they grow out of hand. Listed below are five ways to help your players prevent injuries that will keep them from missing games.

1.They must become more flexible

Flexibility is commonly overlooked when it comes to sports, such as hockey. Though, having increased flexibility will help players significantly decrease the risk of pulling or straining muscles during practices or actual games. Plus, when a player muscle is tight during demanding activities, such as making slap shots or bigger skating strides, when they have tight muscles they’re constantly putting their muscles at risk and could eventually lead to tears. To help with this issue, start off each training session with a stretch routine that will help your players build more flexibility.

2. Increased Mobility Helps a lot

Mobility, the players ability to move around with ease, can lead to players developing issues as they play. Players who lack having high mobility are limiting themselves and their ability to move quickly while on the ice. One of the main reasons why players cannot seem to move quickly or have an incredible first glide is due to mobility-related issues. The best way to solve this problem is to have players do mobility exercise for their upper and lower body before they get on the ice. Eventually, you and the players will start seeing positive results.

3. Combining massages and A.R.T

While hockey may be an enjoyable sport, you and your players should keep in mind that our bodies were not naturally built to put on skates and wear them for extended periods of time. Once players do ear skates, its putting more strain on the muscles needed to properly skate while other stability muscles get ignored. To avoid these muscles from getting weak or overused, players should be getting weekly, preferably bi-weekly massages so those overused muscles can remain loose. Another solution is to incorporate A.R.T, also known as Active Release Technique, which involves releasing extra stress from trigger points and pressure points.

4. Incorporate more strength


Many hockey players are at a higher risk for injuries if they lack adequate strength needed to protect them from the higher impact falls and collisions. Every part of the hockey player’s body – tendons, muscles, and bones, must be strong to prevent the frequency of serious injuries, such as broken collarbones and ripped tendons. The best way to prepare your players is to start getting them into the gym and having them perform repetitions of weighted squats, pull-ups, and planks to increase their core strength and overall body strength.

5. Fix muscle imbalances

The last tip to offer is to follow all the previously mentioned tips, along with making sure that the hockey players muscles stay balanced. Its easy for any sports player to develop muscle imbalances that will increase their likelihood of getting injured. The best way to handle this issue is to push your players to workout every part of their body instead of focusing on one part.

Summary

When hockey season is over with, players should still be finding ways to stay active. If the players incorporate the previously mentioned tips into their daily lives, in and outside of the ice rink, it will greatly decrease the chances of them getting hurt seriously, or even complaining of having minor issues.

Moving on from Coaching High School Athletic to College Athletics

While you may enjoy coaching your high school team – it is natural for some coaches to crave more. The “more” being moving up the coaching ladder and eventually reaching the level where they can coach college athletics as well. However, the dream could become a reality seeing how many college coaches started off as high school coaches early on in their careers, a few examples being Gus Malzahn of Auburn University and Chad Morris of SMU. Though the process of breaking into the college football scene can be a challenge, intimidating, and downright hard at times – no matter how successful your high school football team may have been.

Despite the challenges and the constant competition, there are a few tasks that aspiring college coaches can do to help themselves and to increase their chances of getting the job of their dreams: all of which will be detailed below for your convenience.

1) Become humble and realize you’re going to have to make some sacrifices

Many high school coaches are stuck in the mindset that since they have put in years of hard work and training – and that is shown by their team winning or losing – that they do not have to put the same amount of effort in when they are trying to become a college coach. However, the sooner a high school coach realizes that they’re going to have to work even harder, and sometimes not even get paid for their work, the more they start to appear that they truly want to advance and become a dedicated football coach.

2) Off-of-the-field jobs can be your friend

While you may want the job as being a full-time coach under the head coach of a college team, sometimes it might serve you well to ask for a job that if off the field. This is mainly because head coaches are more willing to hire prior high school coaches for off the field work due to their prior knowledge of the game, how to interact with the players, and the inner working of plays. Plus, it is easier to work your way up the ladder instead of charging in and demanding a certain job.

3) Commit to your current job as if it was your dream job

It’s okay to have higher aspirations than to teach high school football – do not become one of the coaches that strive to climb the coaching ladder that they begin to neglect their current team and current job title. Especially considering being known as the coach who is only looking for the next best thing makes his character look undesirable. Plus, no college is going to want to hire a coach willing to let his current team down just for a newer and bigger opportunity.

4) Standing out is the best thing to do

Many high school coaches strive to become college team coaches in their future. Which means there’s more competition in the field. So, finding a way to stand out is going to be ne of your best option if you want a high chance to climb the coaching ladder. The best way to do this is to start adding more to your resume. Or, just by getting creative and sending something alongside your resume to get it noticed. An example of this being a basketball coach having his resume laser-etched to a basketball and handing it directly to the head coach office – and this method worked for him.

5) Always be willing to learn

While having years of high school coaching experience under your belt can help your chances of becoming a college coach – the best coaches are the ones who realise and accept that they do not know everything about the sport. College coaching is a new beast, and it takes learning new skills to perfect and master it. Having a passion to learn and a will to be the best coach for the team will ultimately help your journey of becoming a top rated and well-known college coach.

Top 3 NHL Coaches of All Time

The National Hockey League or NHL for short is the world’s premier hockey league. While it is the players that tend to get the most attention, some highly skilled coaches deserve their own accolades for the achievements they made in coaching the teams they coached for.

We thought it might be nice to highlight three of the best in the game who have retired or passed away. Their achievements are well deserving of pen to paper per say. We hope you agree!

1. Scotty Bowman

Scotty Bowman had 1,244 wins in his coaching career and is one of the most celebrated. This is the most out of any who have coached in the big leagues and is impressive, to say the least. Bowman began his coaching career with the St. Louis Blues and remained there for four years. After leaving St. Louis, Bowman made his way to Montreal to coach the Canadiens for eight years. A successful run that saw Bowman winning the Stanley Cup five times.

After leaving Montreal, Bowman found himself in Buffalo with the Sabres and in his five years with the team, failed to win the Stanley Cup and was fired from his coaching duties. Bowman then moved to Hockey Night in Canada where he was an analyst before returning to the bench with the Penguins for two seasons where he coached the Penguins to the Stanley Cup in his first year. After his second season, Bowman moved onto to Detroit Red Wings and remained there for a record nine seasons. In those nine seasons, Bowman and the Detroit team won the Stanley Cup three times before Bowman retired in 2002.

2. Joel Quenneville

Joel Quenneville has amassed 783 wins in his NHL career as a coach. Quenneville got his start with the St Louis Blues in 1996 and made it to the playoffs in each of the seven years he was coaching the team. His success with the Blues saw him making it to one conference final and winning the Presidents’ Trophy. After failing to win a Stanley Cup for the team he was let go, and in 2005 he returned to the Colorado Avalanche, a team he was an assistant coach with before accepting the head coach position with the Blues.

Quenneville remained with the Avalanche for three seasons before moving onto the Chicago Blackhawks where he coached the team to their first Stanley Cup trophy in almost 50 years. Since their first win, Quenneville and the Blackhawks have gone on to win the Stanley Cup two more times, once in 2013 and again in 2015. He is considered one of the best coaches in the league today.

3. Al Arbour

However, not all was lost for Arbour as he found himself with the New York Islanders and this is where he shined. While he failed to make it to the playoffs in the first year as head coach, they did every year thereafter while he was head coach. Arbour coached the Islanders to four consecutive Stanley Cup wins during the 80’s before he moved onto the Edmonton Oilers. Arbour remained with the Canadian team until 1986, returning for another six years in 1989 where he coached the team to the playoffs not once, but three times. Arbour had a total of 782 career wins,

However, not all was lost for Arbour as he found himself with the New York Islanders and this is where he shined. While he failed to make it to the playoffs in the first year as head coach, they did every year thereafter while he was head coach. Arbour coached the Islanders to four consecutive Stanley Cup wins during the 80’s before he moved onto the Edmonton Oilers. Arbour remained with the Canadian team until 1986, returning for another six years in 1989 where he coached the team to the playoffs not once, but three times. Arbour had a total of 782 career wins,

However, not all was lost for Arbour as he found himself with the New York Islanders and this is where he shined. While he failed to make it to the playoffs in the first year as head coach, but they did every year after that while he was head coach. Arbour coached the Islanders to four consecutive Stanley Cup wins during the 80’s before he moved onto the Edmonton Oilers. Arbour remained with the Canadian team until 1986, returning for another six years in 1989 where he coached the team to the playoffs not once, but three times. Arbour had a total of 782 career wins.

How to become a Football Coach

Do you wabt to learn how to become a Football Coach?If you want to end up as the Barcelona manager, the chances are that you’re going to have to do it via a simulator, like the popular Championship Manager/Football Manager franchises. However, almost everybody involved with football, either at a club or international level must start at the bottom and work their way up. You might not end up the England manager, but you could still carve out a pretty respectable career in coaching. How? Take your badges and learn to coach.

Level Certificates in Coaching Football

In the English Football League (EFL) system, the coaches and managers are taught extensively everything they need to know. There are three main strands of coaching that players can choose to take. The first (the most ambitious) leads directly to a UEFA Pro License, something that everybody with lofty ambitions and aspirations is going to have to do if they want to make it in the top flights across the world. The second permits you to coach in goalkeeping, Futsal or disabled football. The final strand allows you to work with youths, as a youth team coach. Which strand you take is entirely up to you.

The first step, though, is to take the Level One Certificate in Coaching Football course. It offers coaching sessions for you, and teaches you how to run drills, developer technical skills and is ideally suited to coaches who wish to teach young players.

Passing that step takes you to Level Two, where you can learn in-depth coaching styles. These prepare you for emergencies, player’s nutritional requirements and accidents. This “health and fitness” side of the course is required if you want to be a top coach.

Lastly, Level Three sees you learn performance profiling. You will discover how to evaluate players and team performance, how to set goals, analyses matches, asses psychological, mental and physical fitness.

The UEFA Pro License

Of course, if you wish to take the top jobs in football, you need a UEFA Pro License. To start off with, you need to go through the UEFA B License program. Only after passing this introductory course can you step up to the UEFA A License, which is required by all the top teams, and is the highest coaching badge you can earn. Here, at least 120 hours of coaching are required, especially with an 11-a-side team, and you’ll learn the finer, more intricate aspects of coaching. Once the UEFA A License program has been completed, coaches will be given an FA Academy Managers license (for use in the English league and youth coaching) and/or the UEFA Pro License, which is a serious qualification that makes clubs sit up and take notice of you.

Most young coaches will still have to pay their dues at smaller clubs first, but once you’ve got a UEFA Pro License under your belt, it is likely that you’ll climb the ladder quicker than most; even if you don’t end up at the Real Madrid, Manchester United or Bayern Munich.

Coaching Little League Baseball

Coaching Little League Baseball can be one of the most rewarding, and at the same time most challenging, coaching jobs in all of sports. A well-seasoned and effective coach working with players who are still in their formative years, can provide a foundation for future success in baseball. On the other hand, dealing with inattentiveness , short attention spans and lack of focus on the part of players at this age can be frustrating for a coach.

Also, one can never forget the challenges to come with dealing with the parents of Little League ball players. Any given team will have one or two sets of parents that overestimate or overstate the talent of their child. That is not to say that there are not some good or even great ball players at this age, but parents should be aware that coaching should be left to the coach. This is one of the first things a coach should impart to his team and to the team parents.

Coaching a player in the Little League system requires patience and understanding of where the children are at developmentally. Older players in the system usually have this mastered, but younger players will struggle with the ability to pay attention to coach throughout the entire practice.

Coaching this age is also extremely rewarding. Correcting minor flaws in a player’s swing or throwing motion can have a lifelong effect on their ability to play baseball competitively. The lower end of the Little League age group is also learning the basic fundamentals of the game. Teaching them proper fundamentals is essential to future success in competitive baseball. Some players take to the game immediately while others learn with very little direct supervision and then there is a group who need a lot more Hands-On coaching. This last group is the group that the coach can have the most impact on. Patience can go a long way and can affect whether a player continues to play competitive baseball. And inpatient coach can negatively affect the players self-esteem or desire to play. Younger players are very impressionable and can easily be turned away from the game at this age.

Some players also take to the game like a fish to water. They already know the fundamentals from playing pick up games with their friends. They’ve already established themselves as good players and have learned fundamentals through trial and error, or with the help of their parents or older siblings. This type of player one require too much direct attention.

Baseball is the sport in which the better players come with an abundance of natural talent. It’s the Little League coach’s job to hone that talent. Players without that Raw Talent can still be shaped into productive players. This is where the little league coach can shine. He must be a patient and focus on the player’s needs.

Little League coaching can certainly be a challenge but it is worth the time and effort required.

A Coach Who Taught from Experience

Gene Guarilia was my high school gym teacher. He also taught health classes at the school and had been the basketball coach for many years before I arrived at the high school. He was enormous. Six feet five inches, although he looked a hell of a lot bigger than that. He was known by many names. Whether it was Big Gene, the name all students called him behind his back, Pecos, the name his friends used, or simply Coach, as he was known by the legion of young men he led onto the hardcourt, everyone spoke of him with respect. Gene carried with him a history that was known by many but rarely spoken of. Especially by him.

Gene was born in the coal regions of Pennsylvania, in a small town famous for its pizza, Old Forge. September of 1937 was the beginning of Big Gene’s story. It was a story that would span many miles and many days.

From the very beginning Gene loved the game of basketball. As a young boy, and later a young man, he could most often be found on the playground, ball in hand, shooting foul shots. His dedication and commitment to the game pay dividends. He became a star in high school. As a matter of fact, in 1953 he said a state record for most points scored by a freshman, 595.

His many talents in the basketball court enabled him to attend George Washington University on a scholarship. 30 point college basketball, at one point averaging over 17 points a game and reaching the top ten in the NCAA in rebounding.

For all the students of my generation knew, Gene was a musician when he got out of college. In our era, he was the bass player for a very popular band. We had seen him play many of the local fireman’s picnics and most of us thought that that was where his true passion lie. It turns out of his true passion was coaching. Hear the first successful run as her local high school coach.

What many of us were unaware of the fact that Gene was an NBA player after college. His knowledge of the game when he was coaching was evident and most players couldn’t understand how their coach had come by such a deep and total understanding of the game.
The fact of the matter was, Gene played for the Boston Celtics. Gene played with the Celtics from 1959 until 1963 and during that era

Boston was a dominant team. In a brief span of four years, Gene was a member of four NBA world championship teams.

Gene once told me that he left the Celtics after four years because he wanted to take a job that led to a more stable home environment. That job was teaching and coaching. Gene said he left the NBA because the local high school had offered him $2,100 to be a coach and a teacher. Which was more money than this four-time NBA champion was making playing basketball.

Personal Story: The Coach

The boy was six years old when he first started playing for the coach.  It was the summer between first and second grade and the boy still remembers it to this day. The coach was in his fifties and in his thirty fifthyear ofcoaching young men in the fine art of how to play basketball. But the boy would tell you that being a coach was only a disguise, one of many he wore.

He had a knack for talking to kids. He put them at ease from the first word, even though he was six feet two inches tall, broad-shouldered, two-hundred twenty pounds. He was an imposing figure but the children flocked to him.

He had been a three-sport athlete in high school: basketball, football and baseball. He probably could have played in college but he went to war right after high school. When he came back from overseas he plied the trade he had learned in the Army, working in electrical construction. This was another persona. He was the lineman for the electric company. The guy who took the neighborhood kids for rides in his bucket truck. The same bucket truck he used to hang a backboard and basket on a telephone pole.

While raising a family, he began to mentor some of the neighborhood kids. He started coaching, first baseball, then basketball. He had nine children of his own, six boys and three girls. He often joked he could field his own baseball team.

The neighbors respected the coach. They knew that not only were their kids safe with him, they were also learning. And not just learning a game. They were learningvalues andbuilding character. Sportsmanship, teamwork, handling tour emotions and dealing with a loss were all subjects the coachdelved into on a daily basis. And the kids ate it up. They responded to his teaching and developed a brand of basketball that is rarely seen: A truly unselfish team.

In 35 years of coaching Catholic League basketball, the coach won thirty-two league titles. He took his young men to the state finals a whopping twelve times, winning eight. More importantly, all but four of his student athletes graduated high school. Most went on to college and a few even played Division One basketball.

It turns out that he wasn’t just a coach. He could be a mentor, a teacher, a philosopher and a poet. He could be your bigbrother, your crazy uncle or your stern father, depending on what you needed at the time.

Watching the boys, now men, return for his funeral was very emotional. There were different eulogies, but allin all, there was very little talk of sports. Odd for the funeral of a man with his pedigree. Instead there were words like love, family, character and commitment. Words that were to be the real lesson taught by the coach. I know because I saw him with his disguise off. He was my father.