Teaching Leadership Opportunities To Your Young Athletes
Paying it forward. It comes down to good Coaching. Coaching is leadership and it gives our younger athletes the insight that they need to be successful.
The word “coach” means exactly what is says “coach.” Coaching provides a vehicle that can carry our athletes from one point to another. After personal losses or unfortunate events, a coach can carry their athlete or athletes more literally than metaphorically. Then there are other times when everything is going smooth, as Coaches we just continue to keep the vehicle moving, constantly.
We owe it to the young athletes that we take care of to leave our weight rooms as not only better performers, but better humans as well. We want to get them from their starting point to their finishing point while educating them that the road might have its ups, it’s downs, and it’s in-betweens.
To pay it forward, to pass on our pearls of wisdom to the younger generations, we must categorize what lessons we would like to consistently coach them up on. Here are four lessons that I personally use that I believe can carry them throughout their entire life.
Short Term Goals – small incremental improvements create a sustainable and sensible approach to the individuals “BIG PICTURE.”
Personal Standards – Positive posture, being on time, and treating everyone with respect.
Purpose over Pleasure– Eat with purpose, Train with purpose, Sleep with purpose, Read with purpose.
Physical Preparation – Strong means something. It is a skill. You must work at it, it’s development. You can be the most skilled individual in the world but that doesn’t mean that strength is going to just happen overnight. It takes patience to become physically prepared.
We must help our athletes “do these.” And while most of them know what to do, actually doing it is the key to the desired outcome -- success. Helping our athletes “do” is coaching. At times my job might easily be just to stand there and observe and other times I will coach and coach until my voice is gone because we aren’t getting things done adequately. At the end of the day, my job is to get these kids from start to finish.
I have been in this profession for eleven years now and I know that good coaching is the key to paying it forward for our younger athletes. We all need an anchor, a place where we can fall back and refine our approach toward the weight room, sports, relationships, life.
Coaching them on their short-term goals opposed to long term goals creates a realistic achievement. Over time, their big picture can be fulfilled if they continue to execute their short-term goals.
Personal standards last forever. Nobody forgets first impressions, and nobody will care if you drove a BMW or if you had a long-term contract with the [INSERT TEAM HERE], they will care about what type of person you were and how you treated people.
If life is approached with intent, purpose vs. pleasure, then we would have a better world. Eating with purpose keeps nutritional habits effective in a positive manner. Training with purpose creates a sustainable human body. Sleeping with purpose provides recovery and regeneration.
If you are physically prepared, you are putting yourself in a better position to take on the barbell, the test, the bad days, the good days, the tragedies, and the triumphs. Being physically healthy supports our mental health as well. Nobody ever feels worse after they exercise properly.
These are the lessons that I believe can be paid forward to our younger athletes.