#5 LEAD BY EXAMPLE
Being on time is an excellent wayto lead by example. But thea* aremany others ways. You must realizethat your kids art* watching yourevery move. If they see you performa questionable act, they may alsothink it is OK for them to do it.You must be mindful of this at alltimes,whether it's during a game orat a practice. You want your playersto follow your attitude and demeanor.If you are going to constantly yellat an official or referee during a game,your players will pick up on that.
you do it, it must be alright for them.We as adults know that this isn't thecase, yet we continually see coachesdo it and then be followed by theplayers doing the same thing andcomplaining to the officials.That is not what you want yourteam to be doing. Remember to han-dle yourstif in an adult manner. Youmust always ask
"Are myactions going to benefit my players?"This includes the language that youuse, how much yelling you do atpractice and games, and how wellyou maintain your composure.
#6 BE WILLING TO LEARN
Never think that you know allthere is to know about a sport. Evenafter all the years I have coached,
am still learning different tech-niques, always trying to improvemyself as a coach.Many coaches assume that theyknow all there is to know, eitherbecause they played the game in highschool or have seen it on TV.Don't get caught in this trap.Check out sports shows on TV, readbooks at the library, or go to a book-store to increase your knowledge.If clinics are available, try to par-ticipatein them. Take advantage ofthe knowledge of veteran coaches.
help supervise basketball coaches inour sports program, and I try to passalong tips to our newer coaches. Thisin tum helps them with their players.Don't let your ego get in the way.If you don't understand a skill, ask aveteran coach or refer to some othersource for the answer. Alwaysremember, you are there to help yourplayers leam.
#7 KEEP EVERYONEINVOLVED
Whether it's a practice or
game,don't have anyone sitting on the side-lines for an extended period of time.Obviously, there will be times whenyou're working on things like anoffense, with just a set number ofplayers. That's fine.But you have to get everyoneinvolved at some point. When youfail to involve a person, you may notonly hurt that individual, but alsothe team.How does it hurt the team? Well,if that player doesn't know theoffense you are rurming because hehasn't been involved in a practice,how will he know it when he plays inthe game?Keeping everyone involved in drillsand games will help everyone developa sense of accomplishment no matterwhat their skill level.
#8 BE THICK-SKINNEO
One of the downsides of coachingis being criticized. For a new coach,this can be devastating.
can remem-ber the first time I heard about a fewparents questioning my strategy dur-ing a game.I can tell you, it hurt my feelings.Then it made me angry. But I satdown with a few veteran coaches,and they set me straight.All they did was ask one simplequestion: "Are you doing what is inthe best interest of your players, help-ing them develop?" If you are, thendon't worry about it when anyoneelse disagrees!That simple piece of advice hasstayed with me all these years. So doyour best as a coach, and ignore anymisinformed comments from parentsor fans.
Since you will be called upon todemonstrate drills to your players,you must be able to do them. Thisonly makes sense. Take the time towork on it, whether it is in the gym,on the field, or wherever. I've seen ateam lose confidence in their coachbecause of this. Why would you lis-ten to a coachtell you about shooting,when he can't demonstrate it theright way? Show your players theway you want something done, andearn their respect in the process.
#10 HAVE A PRACTICE
Practice time is very important,and there never seems to be enoughof it. So make sure you don't wasteany of it. Take the time to write up aplan before practice. Consult yourassistants, too, so that they have inputand know what will be going on dur-ing practice. It will make for a muchsmoother practice, with much morebeing accomplished.Coaching is a big responsibility,but a very rewarding one. Take thetime to follow this list and you'll dojust fine. The best part of coaching iswatching a player and team developover the course of a season. Make itinteresting for the players; yet makesure they leam a lot too. Sportsshould be enjoyable for everyone!
Steve Pavlovic is a youth basketball coachat SL Cyril and Methodius Catholic Schoolin Lemont, IL. He has coached for the past22 years at all levels from 4th gradethrough 8th grade, and over the past sixyears he has also served as the basketballcoaches coordinator. He is also author ofseveral self-published e-book series onbasketball skills. You can visit his site atwww.scoremorehoops.com