Of the 3.5 million coaches 2.5 million are volunteers, this means that many coaches are not qualified to coach and may have never coached before (Payne & Isaacs, 2012). Volunteers are very important to our basketball program and we are not turning them away, but we are requiring a coaches and referees to take our training program. There has been a rise in the number of lawsuits against coaches due to alleged negligence toward the children and we want to prevent this from happening in our program (Payne & Isaacs, 2012).
According to Payne and Isaacs with proper training coaches can learn:
- To teach children proper motor skills
- Organize practices
- Appropriately communicate with child athletes
- Prevent and recognize injuries
Since all the coaches will be based on a volunteer basis, it is important that we give them a strong basis of how to coach as above stated but in a positive manner that reinforces the goals of the league.
• RESPECT– One of the most key components of sports! Players are going to look up to coaches so it’s important that they illustrate respect on all levels including parents, players, others coaches, and referees (Baker, 2010). If there is an issue that can’t be handled in a proper manner, there will be other outlets to solve it.
• Positive Criticism– We will go over in detail how to give constructive criticism, as positive reinforcement is important (Baker, 2010). These children will be at a fragile state in their lives and negativity is not going to help them improve their basketball skills, gross and fine motor skills, or help the team win. By creating a positive learning environment it will in turn encourage players to work hard and will thus improve their game tremendously.
• Skill Training– Dribbling, shooting, defending, running plays, and basic rules are all a fundamental part of this league. During our coaching seminar, we will hosts basic skills clinics for those volunteers who maybe aren’t as well versed in basketball as others or who don’t have all the movements mastered. Videos will also be shown and handed out to help enhance learning.
• Planning Out Practices– If we want our players to get better, it’s going to be important to come prepared to each practice with a plan of what skill is going to be practiced that day (Baker, 2010). The success and growth of our players will also depend on the practices and their intensity. If they aren’t being pushed to get better, they won’t. It’s important not to push them too hard in order to prevent frustration and continued failing to meet the coaches expectations. It’s important to push them to the next step anytime they are ready.
• Safety– Do we ultimately want our players to improve? Of course, however, their safety is our number one concern. It will be a requirement that anyone involved in the league, coaches or referees, have their CPR, AED, and First Aid certification. This will ensure that in a given situation they will have a basic knowledge to control the situation until more professional help arrives. We will also guide them in how to recognize a player trying to hide an injury as this also puts them at risk
Ultimately, we want our coaches to be well versed in basketball and prepared to handle the expectations the league has for each of it’s participants. We believe that in teaching them the lessons discussed above, we will be able to achieve this.