8 Tips To Become A Better Coach
8 Tips To Become A Better Coach
Are you looking to become a better coach?
While technology can help you become a more accurate, data-driven leader, there are elements of psychology and behaviour that you’ll need to adopt if you’re going to become the best.
Ready to get started?
Here are 7 tips to help you become a better coach.
1. Find Out Everyone’s Strengths
A one-size-fits-all approach can’t be taken with coaching.
You must orient your focus to match the needs of the person you’re coaching. There is a uniqueness that’s brought onto your team by each member. Finding out the strengths that each member of your team possesses is your job.
As a manager, you need to help the members of your team in the development of their skills through the formulation of a tailored coaching plan. This is a strategy used by kid’s football coach and marketer Diego Varoli. He explains “assigning roles without understanding skills and limitations will only come back to bite you. Finding out everyone’s strengths is the starting point for my little footballers as well as the team I manage at work. And this happens through deep analysis. That’s why sports analysis software is so valuable.”
You can plan and complete projects more efficiently when you are genuinely aware of the individuals within your team.
You also need to certainly understand what their goals are.
2. Provide Clear Communication
The motivation of players during a matchday isn’t your role.
Clear, brief and precise instructions are what you should go for.
Clarity is usually provided by the best coaches. A couple of studies have pointed out that players are less likely to remember many instructions. They’ll probably won’t remember more than three pieces of important information.
Pick one piece of advice to give to your team. Make sure that you deliver this advice using simple language.
This does away with confusions. The team then easily understands the message. Too much information risks confusion.
Progress gained during training may be lost when the team is confused.
3. Stay Positive
Your tone is very critical.
You should have a positive mindset and incorporate many actions. Still, there are diverse ways that different players learn from. Go for a tactics board or a whiteboard if you are not particularly fond of having a five-minute walk. Get yourself something visual for you to get down to work with.
Initiate a discussion with the players instead of having a one-way speech all through.
Find out what the players think they should do when they are faced with certain scenarios. This affirms their understanding of the challenges that lie ahead.
4. Be Patient
Patience is required in coaching.
This applies regardless of the team that you are coaching; be it the under 8’s or under 21’s side.
It is usually challenging to offer guidance to a team of athletes during the development of their skills. Nevertheless, this guidance can offer many rewards.
Take a break when you feel as though your patience is wearing thin. Stop and reconsider the circumstances. Thereafter, either choose to continue or go for another track.
Affirm to yourself and your team that there is an understanding of the challenges that lie ahead.
5. Provide ‘Sandwich’ Feedback
For your athletes to learn, develop and grow, feedback is very essential. For it to be effective, you should use ideal ways when providing feedback.
Make use of the ‘sandwich’ approach when delivering feedback to your team. This approach uses positive reinforcement, followed by constructive criticism, then finished off with more positive reinforcement.
Professional Trainer Leonie O’Connell explains using the ‘compliment sandwich’, “sometimes what you may think is a throw-away comment, or even your job to point out their faults, comes across as a direct attack. By reinforcing constructive feedback with compliments on what they did right you take away the negative aspect of your feedback. Most people are more receptive to this sandwich approach.”
“That’s a fantastic position for your body, ensure your arm’s extended after you’ve taken your shot, keep maintaining that awesome effort”.
Useful information is relayed to the athlete while still making him or her feel great about the efforts put in.
6. Look For The Right Fit
You should not take the cookie-cutter approach when it comes to coaching.
Find out more on the strategies and approaches that you need to take. The personalities of your team members will be a key determinant of the relationships as well as skill sets being developed and the classroom’s needs.
For instance, one of your teachers may want the coach to mainly just observe and make suggestions. On the other hand, another teacher may be more inclined to the coach being more hands-on modelling and demonstrations.
The skills, needs and preferences of each teacher will determine how you’ll support them. This is basically what makes coaching challenging.
Plus it also makes it exciting!
7. Build a Relationship with your Players
Just like anything in life, building a strong relationship with your players is going to hugely change the way they play. This can bring an immeasurable emotional impact to the energy players put in and the performance they get out.
Always remember that you are coaching people, make sure you care more about them then the sport. We recommend keeping individual files for all players to record not only their performance but important people in their life, their birth dates, favourite foods and anything else that will help develop your relationship with them
Setting aside time to speak with your team on a casual basis is important, this could be as simple as asking them what they got up to on the weekend or how their new puppy is doing with toilet training. But don’t forget that relationships go two ways, as a coach you may have to open up first and share your personal life and what’s meaningful to you first.
Take a leap of courage and see how your athletes change the way they play after opening up.
8. Continue Improving
Attending courses and accreditation isn’t all there is to the improvement of a coach. Self-evaluation is also critical.
Ask yourself these questions after your coaching sessions:
- During the sessions, what meaningful things did I engage in?
- What areas do I need to improve on?
- What were the achievements of my athletes?
Adjustments to your coaching can be made from the answers to these questions.
Additionally, find an experienced coach to guide you.
For continuous improvement, get experienced coaches to watch your sessions. Or, watch your own sessions with sports tech designed to evolve as a coach.