Thread: Coaching a team
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07-26-2012, 07:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Coach Parker View Post
Have a parents only meeting and a players only meeting before the first practice or game.

Set your own rules of parents not speaking to you until 24 hours have passed after a game, regardless of the outcome.

Have a strong manager to deal with parents and finances.

Bring in two assistant coaches and have the parents understand that these two coaches are for the players and support and any issues should be brought to you and not them. This keeps them from being barraged or accidentally contradicting you.

Have it in your head right now that at least two times a month you will have a game where you are mad, the kids are mad about their play or ice time, the parents are mad about your decisions and you go home to a mad girlfriend or wife because you were at the rink for four hours or more.

Don't compromise or give in and do what a parent wants over what you think is right. The parent will turn on you eventually anyway and if you stuck to what you thought was right you will feel better and stronger and not upset that you gave in and they still turned on you.

Don't try to please everyone. Make sure the players are enjoying hockey and the rest will follow.

The practice, systems, drills and development will be the easy part.

Welcome to the brotherhood.
Parents only meeting before you know all the players is asking for trouble. Parents' night at schools happen after the first report or progress report. Do not allow input before you have your own evaluation of each player to go along with the associations.

Association rules will always trump your rules. This one is hard to enforce if you or the assistants have your own kids on the team.

Two assistants are handy. When I started coaching in the sixties, assistants were unheard of. Ask for volunteer helpers from amongst the parents to help during practises or various team related tasks. Encourage cheer squads, party organizers, etc. These parents will provide valuable feedback.

Getting mad? Why? You and the other coaches are the adults in the situation. Also everyday life has enough problems, don't add to them. If you are having fun, the players and everyone else will have fun. Use the flashpoints as teaching aides. Hard to teach on ice and off ice discipline if you are losing yours.

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