How to Adjust to a Loud Coach

By Erica Salmon, TeamSnap user, team mom, writer and guest author

With three children playing multiple sports each year, we have had many different coaches with many different styles. Initially, my kids all started out with my husband coaching them, and my husband has a very gentle and calm demeanor. So as my children transitioned to other coaches, they would often describe those other coaches as “loud.”

After thoughtful consideration on the topic of coaches being loud, I have decided that there is “good loud” and “bad loud.”

The “good loud” is a coach who demands the kids’ attention. He or she expects the kids to hustle, to behave and to listen to instruction in order to learn, develop as a player and, quite simply, not get hurt, especially in the early years! That coach is giving instruction as well as praise, not just firing off demands of what to do and what not to do. A good loud coach takes command on the field or court and wins the players’ trust and respect.

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For kids who are not used to “loud” adults in their lives, this can be an adjustment. My son, Luke, has a soccer coach who is often giving him instructions from the sideline during a game. He is looking to Luke to help make adjustments on the field very quickly. Some games, Coach might yell to Luke 10 or 20 times.

When Luke first started playing for this coach, his impression was that he was always getting “yelled at.” My husband and I explained that Coach is looking to him to be a strong player and make quick adjustments on the field. We explained that Coach sees that Luke has the ability to make adjustments. We impressed upon Luke that when Coach stops giving you instructions, you should worry; he must not think you can handle it.

There is a difference between a coach “yelling to” a player and a coach “yelling at” a player.

Explaining the difference to Luke has helped him adjust significantly. Luke needs to listen to what is being said, not simply focus on the fact that Coach is yelling to him from the sideline.

There are other situations where a coach can be “good loud.” They might be overtly enthusiastic, a generally vocal person or trying to compensate for loud spectators. In context, this is “good loud” in my book.

As far as the “bad loud” … well, that’s pretty self-explanatory. If you have a coach that is negative and sincerely “yelling at” the kids, I believe that coach is going to be ineffective in the long run; that type of coaching style does not build a child’s confidence. And let’s face it, talent without confidence doesn’t get a child very far! If you have a coach that curses, is derogatory or uses inappropriate “humor,” it is probably time to move on (High school and college coaches might have different tactics; I am talking about youth sports here.).

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Not all adults are meant to coach children at certain ages. Would you put up with a classroom teacher that speaks to your child the same way some coaches do? I wouldn’t.

If you are a parent who thinks your child needs to be yelled at to be motivated, make sure the intention of the loud instruction is still positive in nature. Even if you think your child needs a little volume to respond, make sure it is a “good loud” and not a “bad loud.”

Erica Salmon is a TeamSnap Mom, often seen on the sidelines of youth soccer, baseball, field hockey and basketball games as well as at dance recitals, concerts and art shows. Erica is a book author, former fashion analyst for NBC10 (Philadelphia) and the founder of several Websites and blogs including Fantasy Fashion League and Red Carpet Mom. Erica lives in Mullica Hill, NJ, with her husband, three children and their enormous dog Elvis.

 

 

10 Ways You’re Causing Your Child Sport-Induced Stress

Participating in a sport is supposed to be fun. In fact, a recent survey conducted by the American Psychological Association estimates that 9 percent of all children use sports to help manage stress. For those children, sports can be fun, but for many children, sports can be extremely stressful.

Children taking part in competitive sports often feel stressed, but the cause of that stress may be surprising to some parents. Often, it isn’t the coaches or your children’s teammates that are causing the stress; it could be you — and you may not even know you’re doing it! Are you guilty of any of these stress-inducing behaviors? Avoid stressing your child out during sports activities by remembering these stressful behaviors parents engage in during games, practices or even around the house.

1. Talking About Your Own Great Sports Accomplishments

Sharing your own sports accomplishments may be inspiring to your child, but if you keep bringing them up, it could become stressful. Many children experience sport-induced stress from hearing stories about how great their parents were at a sport because they feel they have to accomplish the same things their parents did.

2. Comparing Your Child to Other Team Members/Children

Children have their own unique talents and abilities when it comes to a certain sport. Comparing them to other children or other teammates could produce feelings of anxiety and stress, especially when they are unable to perform the same skills or at the same level as the other child.

3. Turning into a Bleacher Coach

You may think coaching from the sidelines is offering your child extra support or help, but it really is just confusing them. Children will feel extreme levels of stress with “bleacher” coaching from parents because they do not know to whom to listen for advice. Should they do what the coach is telling them, or should they listen to their parent?

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4. Making Sports the Center of Your (and Your Child’s) World

Yes, there are a lot of things that can come from engaging in sports. Scholarships, wonderful opportunities to travel and even jobs, but there is no reason it should become the center of your world or your child’s. What if they want to try a different sport or they get injured? Sports may not always be there, and if it’s all you talk about, your child will feel obligated to stay in sports long after they no longer want to play.

5. Arguing with the Coach Over Sports Decisions

If all parents had their way, their children would play in every game the entire time. But that decision rests with the coaches, not the parents — and for good reason. Don’t spend the time arguing with the coaching staff about how often your child is playing. It is embarrassing and stressful for your child!

6. Living Vicariously Through Your Child

It’s natural to want what is best for your child, but when it comes to sports, you have to follow your child’s lead and let them pick the sports they want to take part in. Introduce your children to a sport you played when you were younger, but don’t force them to play just because you loved it and want to relive the good old days.

7. Making Every Game Seem Like Life or Death

No parent likes to see their child lose, and you don’t want to encourage a child to have a “who cares?” attitude, but it is important to make sure winning isn’t everything. When winning is everything, a child will feel tremendous pressure to impress all the time.

8. Forcing Extra Practice Sessions

Children need practice to succeed at sports, but scheduling several extra practice sessions a week can be overwhelming to youngsters and stressful/harmful on the body. Feel free to encourage your children to practice, but don’t force them to practice for hours in addition to their regular practice sessions.

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9. Overbooking Your Child’s Schedule

It is tempting to want to sign up a child for every sport they show a remote interest in, but many sports seasons overlap. The overlapping season leads to an overbooked schedule for your child, which leaves them tired, cranky and experiencing sports-induced stress. Pick one or two sports to focus on. It will be enough to keep you and your child busy.

10. Missing Important Family Events for Minor Sports Events

Scheduling conflicts between your child’s sports team and family events are inevitable. If the family event is important to you or other family members, skipping it could cause your child to feel an overwhelming amount of stress or guilt. After all, you’d be missing something important because of their interest in a sport.

Brandon Capaletti is the Vice President of Cisco Athletic, a Maryland-based athletic apparel manufacturer that designs, produces and distributes custom uniforms for 18 different sports including basketball, soccer, and baseball.

 

 

TeamSnap Offers a New and Improved Team Store Experience

Whether you play for the Tigers, the Narwhals or the Fighting Unicorns, TeamSnap’s new Team Store experience will make it easier for your players, coaches and fans to show their team pride.

TeamSnap’s new Team Store experience has been completely updated and improved and is now powered by KitOrder, the same team order management service that fuels Riddell, Louis Garneau, Sugoi, Sports Authority and Sport Chalet. Now you can quickly and easily choose the items you want to offer in your Team Store, featuring your team colors, name and logo, and share the store teamwide.

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  • Grandma wants a team jacket? What’s her size?
  • Dad wants team-branded warm-up pants? We’ve got him covered (literally).
  • Sister wants a team soccer ball? No problem.
  • Don’t see what you’re looking for? Just ask!

The Team Store offer a variety of apparel and equipment specific to your sport, and team managers can select from hundred of products and colors to find exactly what the team needs for the season. But if we don’t have what you’re looking for, simply let the folks at KitOrder know, and if the item is available, they’ll add it to your store.

How It Works

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Select from name-brand gear and equipment, with team pricing, to create your own Team Store.

  • Click on the Team Store tab on the TeamSnap web app dashboard (if your team manager has previously disabled the Team Store tab, he or she will need to re-enable it at Manager Preferences → Tab Manager).
  • Upload your logo.
  • Select your team colors.
  • Choose your team products.
  • Share with your team and fans.
  • Orders are paid for individually.
  • Orders are shipped directly to the customer placing the order.

With the Team Store feature, there’s no more papers to fill out or checks to collect. Just one more way we make it easier to organize your team!

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Stephanie Myers is the Content Manager for TeamSnap, managing such content as this blog, the TeamSnap newsletter and much more. When she’s not being the boss of content, you can find Stephanie competing in a competitive skee-ball league in Austin, Texas.

 

New Availability Features Make It Easier to Track Your Roster

When I interview customers about how TeamSnap can improve, the feature they most want to talk about is Availability, which is fun for me, because as the team manager of my daughter’s club soccer team, it’s where I spend most of my time, too.  I’m constantly nagging the parents to answer that seemingly simple question, “Will Tina be at the game Saturday?”  Well, at least I’m constantly nagging Tina’s parents with that one….

So to help us managers get what we need from our players, we’ve added a few new Availability features to the web app, now available for all TeamSnappers on a paid plan.

First, for players who always show up for everything, we’ve added the ability to mark all undecided events with the same status with just one click on the website. Players can look for the button right beneath their name on the Availability page. No more complaining about one-at-a-time updates!

Second, we have a new button viewable only to managers on the Availability page that will allow them to easily send a reminder to members who have not yet set their availability for a specific event. This is a duplicate of the “Send Sign Up Reminders” button that was hidden on each individual event’s page. I say “hidden” because I was a TeamSnap user for three years before learning of this button’s existence. I had been sending manual “availability nag” emails for years, so you can imagine my excitement when I stumbled across it as an employee. Nirvana!

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Third, for coaches and managers who prefer to assume every member of the team is automatically coming to every event, we have a new setting in the Preferences tab that will set all roster members’ availability to “yes” by default for all newly created games and events (team members will still be able to manually change their availability for any event).

While this has been an oft-requested feature, here’s a word of advice you may want to heed before turning this on: don’t forget to inform all members of your team that you’re doing so! You certainly don’t want to be surprised on game day when players who you think are coming don’t show up.

Of course, you may have to have that one awkward conversation with the player who didn’t let you know.  But to me, one tough talk reminding someone about the importance of filling out one’s availability is a lot better than having to nag them every … single … week!

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Now, this feature may not be right for every team.  Adult teams may want to stay away, as who’s got time to make everything these days?  But for youth teams where participation at every event is the expectation, not the exception, this may be just the trick for you.

So that’s all for now, but there’s more improvements coming online soon that I can’t wait to tell you about.  I hope these new features will help you get those availability deadbeats in line!

 

Introducing TeamSnap for Android 3.0: Now Both Pretty and Awesome

scheduleWe’re super excited today to take the wraps off TeamSnap 3.0 for Android. It’s our biggest Android release yet, and we think you’re going to love it.

The first thing you’ll notice is a spiffy new look.

We’re updating the design of TeamSnap everywhere, and Android users are getting the new makeover first.

We want to make sure TeamSnap looks modern, friendly and approachable on all your devices — phones, tablets, browsers — on every platform.

But it’s more than just a pretty face, because we’ve done everything possible to make the app speedier. Thanks to some major work under the hood, you should now find your TeamSnap Android experience to be overall snappier. You want to locate your next game or look up the coach’s phone number as quickly as possible, and this release is a jump forward in how fast the app runs.

But speed is also about how fast you can get to the information you need, so we’ve moved some key tasks front and center in the app. Our redesigned Schedule screen now has a widget for setting your availability for each game and event. No more drilling into each individual event to event-detailset availability, just fire up the Schedule screen and set and confirm your availability with a quick tap-tap-tap. We’ve also made the game/event detail screens easier to read so you can get all the scoop you need at a quick glance.

Those are just a few of the big things, but there’s much more:

Want to copy someone from your TeamSnap roster to your device’s address book? Boom! One click. Done.

Higher-resolution photos? We got ‘em.

Easier to use Facebook login? You bet.

And of course, there are dozens of little tweaks and bug fixes to make your TeamSnap experience on Android better than ever.

If you don’t yet have TeamSnap 3.0 for Android, hop over to the Google Play store and grab it. It’s free! If you already have it, be sure to upgrade to this great new version.

We hope you’re delighted by this new release, and we’d love to know what you think. Comment here, or hit us up on Facebook or Twitter to give us your feedback. A few surprises are in store for version 3.1, so stay tuned!