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How to Coach Girls Paperback – February 26, 2018
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It is refreshing to read HOW TO COACH GIRLS recognizes and embraces the unique aspect of coaching female athletes. A guide for coaches of all sports to facilitate the incredible responsibility and privilege we have to work with the future female leaders through the wonderful gift of sport.
To finally articulate the sentiments of many successful female sports team coaches, and identify the techniques and approaches that will contribute to the potential success of the girls both on and off the fields.
To demonstrate to all of us that adjusting our approach, focus or style of communication is no longer a compromise but the sign of a great coach that only wants to catapult these girls to be confident, capable and proud young women today! HOW TO COACH GIRLS gives us tangible ideas, practice plans and thought provoking chapters to help us do exactly that!
Vice President of Field Hockey
3 STEP Sports, LLC
Do you coach youth sports or have a child who's a player? "How to Coach Girls" is an invaluable "go-to" resource. It addresses the "on and off the field" issues from cliques to Parents' and Players' Codes of Conduct. Boston College Winningest Head Women's Soccer Coach Alison Foley and Harvard entrepreneur Mia Wenjen, both soccer moms, share their experiences and invite you to note your thoughts as well. This book is dense with insights!
Faculty, Boston College
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- Girls will compete after they bond - and so you need to give them opportunities to bond e.g. early in practice or make a water break take a little longer
- Break up any cliques that form
- Keep it fun
- Lots of positive reinforcement but make it genuine
- You have to build trust and safety - they won't try or take risks if the feeling is that failure means punishment. You need to create "emotional safety".
Lots of fun ideas e.g.
- Coaches' forfeit
- Cupcakes for birthdays
- The "How to be a better teammate" game.
This is a quick read but should be handed out to every Girls' team coach Day 1.
As we all know sports can help teach invaluable lessons about effort, persistence, discipline and, team effort. It can and should also teach girls to be inclusive, considerate and dedicated. Wenjen and Foley warn against an over-emphasis on winning and cite data that supports their assertion that most girls participate in sports to have fun, friendship, and physical activity. (Winning is actually a minor motivator.)They recognize that sport must be fun for participants so that they will stay with it.
Team success can best be measured by the quality of experiences team membership creates and the values it reinforces. How to Coach Girls shares specific techniques for coaches along with the rationale which underpins them. Marketing plans, ideas for making drills fun and, a season-wide overview help coaches set the stage for long-term success. Wenjen and Foley recognize that coaches, parents, and girls must work hand in glove to create a positive athletic experience for girls.
Coaching girls through the lens of relationship and a “growth mindset” are excellent ways to accomplish that. Operating from this approach means coaches can help girls win at life and in their chosen sports. That is a win/win which we can all support.
--Gayle H. Swift, author of ABC, Adoption & Me, Co-founder of GIFT Family Services
I received an advanced reader copy in exchange for an unbiased review.
Chapters include such topics as keeping it fun, promoting a growth mindset, and developing good people (not just good players). The focus is on the overall development of the person (girl) and not only athletic skill level. There are solutions to specific issues such as when coaching your own daughter and handling a losing streak. Body image is another important topic covered. There are specific “code of conduct” lists for players and parents. Having parents sign a contract is a proactive method of preventing specific issues that could arise. This book has it all!