Coaching Skills

Being A Great BBDFL Coach-The Top 10

Age Group: All

Drill Type: Fundamentals


To Be The Best I Can Be!!


With these Ten points and a sound perspective of the junior level that you are coaching, should allow you to watch your team achieve the delicate balance of having fun, playing a game and achieving a result. The result might not always mean winning a game!

How many of the top 10 are familiar?

1. Be Positive! When you provide feedback, put something positive with it. Handle it something like this: "Great effort, next time remember to see if we can just make an earlier pass” Sandwich constructive criticism with positive reinforcement.

2. Make it Fun! As a coach, you must make it fun! That does not mean there is no discipline and structure. It means you can still have fun whilst coaching them that discipline is part of the game. We're talking about children, not professionals, so keep it light, organised and ABOVE ALL.... FUN

3. Develop Confidence in Every Player! The best coaches develop players who BELIEVE they can achieve great things as an individual and as a team. Commend them for the effort and help them realise it is part of the game. If a player is confident that his/her coach believes in him/her no matter the circumstance, he/she will play with more confidence and develop this valuable characteristic in life beyond the field of play!

4. Set Expectations Early! Your first communication with the parents of your team must include your expectations for the season. These expectations MUST be inclusive of the players, parents, and YOU the coach. You will avoid many problems during the season if you are clear with your expectations and you “walk the talk” of those expectations. Keep them simple, such as: arriving to training and match day on time; giving your best effort; and having a great attitude. Remember this includes YOU the coach.

5. You are the Coach! Make sure the team understands they are there to learn the game and you're going to help them develop.

6. The Three R's! RESPECT the game (including coaches and officials); RESPECT their teammates; and RESPECT the opponent. Without an opponent you have no game. Share this with parents and expect the same from them. They need to remember they are an example for their children. Yelling negatively at the official, the other team or their child does not show RESPECT. As the coach you are more of an example than their parents on the field. YOU TEACH THIS BY EXAMPLE!

7. Short-Term Memory! Help your players develop a short-term memory. This means to not dwell on mistakes or get upset at making an error. They need to forget what happens as soon as possible and move on. It is in the past and they can’t change it, so move forward with a positive attitude. Teach them that mistakes are okay.

8. Minimize Coaching DURING the Game! Try (and I emphasise try) because it is not easy to do this. It is very difficult to do, especially with younger children. The time to coach is at training. Game time is when the work you do at practice is applied. Things to work on at the next practice!

9. Develop Leaders! Give leaders of the team more responsibility on the field. Allow them to advise the other players what to do, as long as they do it in a respectful, positive manner. Tell them they can correct and instruct other players only if they do so in a way they would like to be talked to.

10. Develop Versatile Players! At the youth level you must strive to develop well-rounded players. Playing a child in one position all of the time simply for the sake of winning is not beneficial to the player or the team. Allow kids to learn different positions and your team will grow to levels you never imagined. You will also be keeping the game exciting for the player. One way to do this is ask kids at the beginning of the season what positions they are interested in playing.

IN SUMMARY: Never forget this is the BBDFL not the PREMIER LEAGUE.

Lets learn, enjoy and develop the children.