Becoming A Better Soccer Coach Through Awareness of Our Role and Influence
Updated: Apr 12
As soccer coaches and leaders, we often consider ourselves technical and tactical instructors. But what if there was more to coaching than just teaching the fundamentals? What if our behaviours are role-modelling our values, emotions, and communication styles to our athletes, and these behaviours are teaching them far beyond the development of their technical and tactical skills and understanding?
By expanding our awareness of our role and influence as coaches and leaders, we can move beyond understanding ourselves as technical and tactical instructors to appreciate how deeply we can impact the individuals within our team.
How Can Coaches and Leaders Impact the Lives of Their Athletes?
The framework for this expanded awareness challenges us to think about the critical differences between the objectives of sport and the purpose of sport. This impacts the potential meaning and contribution that sports can make in our lives. By looking at our own values, emotions, communication styles, and behaviours as coaches, we can better create an environment where both winning on the field and developing as people is possible.
When it comes to creating a positive environment for learning and growth, great coaches and leaders strive not only to be good teachers but also good leaders who understand their impact on their athletes. They recognize that they are responsible for teaching more than just sports skills; they must also model behaviours that promote respect, care, collaboration, community, self-reflection, and courage – all qualities that will help their athletes succeed beyond sports.
By being aware of these skill sets, which transcend sports knowledge itself – by cultivating an understanding that wins do not just define success on the field – coaches and leaders open up an avenue for their athletes to gain valuable lessons from their participation in sports that will last them a lifetime. These lessons go far beyond knowing how to kick a ball properly or create goal-scoring opportunities; instead, they include teaching social intelligence (such as empathy), problem-solving (such as making sound decisions) and working with others (such as teamwork). All are essential skills for leading happy, successful lives after sports have ended.
Coaches and leaders have immense potential to shape the lives of young athletes – far more than many might realize. By increasing their awareness of role and influence within sports environments – by understanding how our values, emotions, modes of communication and behaviour matter so much more than teaching techniques or tactics – coaches become leaders who are capable not only of forming successful teams but also inspiring individuals who grow into well-rounded adults capable of achieving success beyond sport. As soccer coaches striving for excellence in competitive settings while fostering teamwork within our players on and off the field of play, let’s challenge ourselves today to become aware of this opportunity and leverage it for positive change tomorrow!
AN INVITATION TO JOIN US
Our foundational module, Module 1, has been successfully offered twice already. Discover how this purpose-driven and values-based approach to coaching education blends leadership principles with technical coaching - all designed to support you in reaching the next level of your understanding and growth.
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Founder of Andrea Neil Coaching &
The Coaching Compass
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