No matter what level of sport you are operating at, making the transition from player to coach is never an easy one, however there are some steps that can be taken in order to give yourself the best possible chance of being successful.
Pep Guardiola, Ivan Lendl and Zinedine Zidane are just some of the former players who have successfully made the transition to become a successful coach over the years, however there are also a large number of examples of those who have failed to make the grade. The transition requires patience, communication and support along the way, with the following points having been put forward in order to help budding coaches in their journey.
Understand that Coaching is Not Easy
Those looking to transform themselves into a coach will most likely quickly realise that being a player is a lot more straightforward. When you are a player, you will often not take into consideration what your coach is going through, whether it be admin, tactics or planning training sessions. While players are able to turn up to training just before it starts, coaches must be there early to get everything set up. Meanwhile, depending on the level of sport in which you are involved in, don’t be surprised if scouting, meetings and analysis becomes an everyday occurrence.
Take Influence from Former Coaches
Former teammates and coaches are likely to have a significant impact upon how you operate as a coach, however be sure to try and stay true to yourself too. Whether it the terminology and phrases you use during matches or how you deal with problematic situations, consider how you liked to be treated as a player, as well as how past coaches achieved results.
Consider Advice from Others
It is wise to have people around you who you trust, meaning that you will have someone to go to when support or advice is needed. Those coaching kids may look to involve some of the parents, while those at higher levels of sport will often have assistants or fellow coaches to call upon. Those who do so will often be able to take advantage of different ideas, so make sure to show your appreciation for such support.
Communicate at All Times
While miscommunication is almost inevitable for new coaches, it important to communicate as effectively as possible. Failing to get your point across is one of the most common reasons as to why coaches fail to achieve their goals, with the best coaches making sure all players are on the same wavelength. This is something that may not come naturally to all budding coaches, however it must be worked on each and every day.
Utilise Learning Opportunities
Modern-day sports coaches are constantly having to adapt, meaning that they must put themselves in situations where they learn the necessary skills required to do just that. So, consider completing additional coaching courses, attending professional fixtures and looking out how other sports operate, perfect for those looking to broaden their horizons.
Find Your Motivation
Those looking to get into sports coaching must first consider their motivation behind this decision, whether it be to aid the development of others or for something to do in your spare time. Having a purpose in what you are doing will keep you motivated when times get tough.
Whether it be losing heavily during a football match or seeing try after try being scored at one end of the rugby field, the mercy rule is used in a number of sports today in order to ensure that youngsters are not overwhelmed by a result. However, does this rule really serve its purpose?
Connecting with youngsters today is no easy task, with sports coaches often facing an uphill battle when it comes to striking up a rapport with their players as a result. So, just what can be done in order to help coaches engage as much as possible with their players?