Saturday, January 16, 2010

What is a youth soccer coaches job? The HOW WHAT and WHY methodology.

Observing my peers and based on my own beliefs and experience this is what I've come up with:

A coach's job is to make their player,s at whatever level they come to the coach at, to be better as an individual and in a team then when they first arrived in their guidance. To me the way to do that is by teaching players HOW WHAT and WHY.

What I am noticing is that many (probably 80% if not more in USA) coaches overcoach the WHAT without teaching HOW or WHY. This doesn't improve players or allow them to leave that coaches team and perform in a different system, at a different level, or with different players. These players become robots for this coach and only know how to play for him/her not how to play the game anywhere with anyone. This is a BIG PROBLEM in the US and it's something I hope we can fix.

The problem's solution all starts with the HOW. In my belief and the belief of the country of Brazil HOW is technique. A player without technique (the ability to pass, trap, dribble, shoot, head) is like a student without knowledge of the alphabet and the ability to write. Sure someone could take a group of kids who don't know how to read and write and eventually get them to complete their (that coaches) own tests but what happens when that student (player) leaves that grade and goes to a different teacher? They are lost and have to learn how to take tests all over again. If they knew how to read and write they would have no problem, much like a player being able to pass trap dribble and shoot along with where and what their job is on the field. This is what is I see happening in youth soccer, players go from coach to coach and have to learn all over and never really understand HOW WHAT and WHY. This is not very productive and really slows the progression of America's youth.

If a player is taught technique first they have the tools to do the job and have the HOW. Then the player can be taught WHAT to do on the field and if a coach lets them know and understand WHY these players can play, enjoy, and succeed at whatever level and with whomever the they choose to play with. Without the HOW WHAT and WHY a player will never reach full potential and our job as coaches is to make sure players leave us better then they came to us. So please coaches teach these things and observe these players succeed when they leave to go to another coach and watch our country succeed on the world stage.

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