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A lot goes into building a team. And youth sports coaches should focus on more than just game strategy; they should be intentional about the values their players learn.
Here are six suggested values to incorporate into your coaching and team building. Use them, tweak them, or throw them out and write your own. Just be sure you have some values that you coach by and that your team plays by. They can serve as guidelines that go well beyond the playing fields.
We are generous givers, not self-serving takers.
This is where the important lesson of teamwork is learned.
We will have fun.
Hard work and fun can play on the same field. If your team has fun in the process of being challenged, they will learn to love the game.
We will be committed.
This applies to showing up for practices and games, having each others’ backs, and doing your best to help the team be better.
We will persevere.
Giving up easily is not an option. You’re a team, after all.
We will communicate.
On the field or court, on the sidelines, or in the locker room, we will be clear, honest and respectful. We will not assume that our teammates or coaches know something; we will be SURE they do.
We will trust each other.
Trust that is earned and given freely can add a whole new level of cooperation and performance to the team.
Once you establish your team’s values, make them visible at each game and practice. Talk about them in the huddles, before and after the game. Having these values will give your athletes a compass on how they play and how they should treat each other — which is a win/win for any sports team.
Janis B. Meredith is a life coach for sports parents. Learn more about how she helps parents: https://jbmcoaching.lpages.co/invitation-for-free-coaching-call/