Thinking about coaching
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11-07-2012, 04:20 PM
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Orillia, Ontario
Originally Posted by
I've been giving a lot of thought into volunteering as an assistant coach, likely in the Pee Wee or Bantam house divisions. As luck would have it, the NCCP clinic I need to go to is in December.
This would be my first time ever coaching. I played rep up until my last year of Bantam and had to quit due to concussions, so I have an understanding of the game. I'm 29 years old now.
Any coaches out there that can give me some advice going forward, or ones who have recently started coaching?
First of all, good for you! Hockey needs more good coaches, and other volunteers.
If coaching hockey is something you plan to do for a long time, the best advice I can give you is to steal from every other coach. Even the worst coach in the world does something right, and even the best coach in the world does something wrong. Your post here is a very good start!
As for advice, I think the most important thing I've learned over the years is that coaching goes far beyond the actual mechanics of playing the game of hockey. I'll just go with two important ones:
Communication is key
. Unfortunately, this is a skill that takes times to develop. It's hard to explain exactly what makes a good communicator, but I would encourage you to try different ways. I took my biggest step in this area when I realized something that seems so simple - "just because it makes sense to me doesn't mean it makes sense to them".
Player psychology is also very important
. Another tough one to explain, but I'll try. Every player is different. Some are naturally smarter than others. Some are more mature than others. Some are mentally tougher than others. Some play for different reasons. As a result, every player is going to react better or worse to different kinds of communication and coaching. If you can figure out how each player ticks, the communication becomes a lot easier. That's the biggest mistake most coaches make - they treat everyone the same. It's not that simple.... not even close. Some players need a kick in the arse, and others need a coach to hold their hand. You'll get a lot more out of each player if you can find out the best way to communicate with them.
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