As a softball coach, your job is to help your athletes become excellent softball players. There are certain qualities and skillsets one needs in order to be a great coach. Softball coaching can be frustrating and sometimes, gives you a lot of pressure. But everything will eventually pay off as long as you try hard enough.
A softball coach is more than just a drill instructor. What a softball coach does is more than just teaching his players the fundamental skills of softball. A coach is the one who provides a safe environment for his players, teaches them about sportsmanship, and develops their character.
Evaluate the player performance
The most important task of a coach is to improve his players’ performance and find a way to improve it. A coach needs to make good judgement on his players. He can’t have unfair expectations nor underestimate their potential.
Fuel the passion
Your players are the stars of the game. A coach needs to constantly motivate his team by keeping the game exciting every day.
- Mix fun drills in your daily routines.
- Encourage competition by incorporating games and contests into daily practices
It’s natural and inevitable that a team always has players at different skills levels. A coach needs to be fair and favouritism can destroy your team’s morale. Every coach has his favourite player, but that’s not the reason to go easier or harder on a certain someone and ignore the rest.
A good coach has to voice out his opinions on everything including compliments and criticism. It takes good communication skills to build constructive criticism and make them better softball players. A coach can’t have his players think that you’re criticizing them as people instead of their performance.
Here are some fundamental rules a coach needs to observe in order to be effective in communication.
- Be positive: You have to be positive yourself, and teach your players to be positive to create a positive team atmosphere. Do not allow bullying and arrogance. Teach them sportsmanship, leadership. Don’t allow your players to be complacent.
- Don’t be rude, sarcastic nor insult your players: Never to yell at your players in front of fans, family or in the middle of the game. Make it a private discussion. This is a way to respect your players as well as make them respect you.
- Be straight forward
- Provide constant feedback
Sometimes, nonverbal communication is the best way of communication. And sometimes, your body language shows more negative traits than you intend to. So as a coach, it’s important to be wary of your body language. Some signs can make you unapproachable to your players as they make you look disappointed or even angry. For example, constantly frown, roll your eyes, throw fits or stand with your arms crossed.
Control your emotions
Be aware of your emotions and never show anger or scream at your players, especially the young ones. It’s natural to express disappointment, but your methods of communication and discipline need to be appropriate for your player ages.
Remember, in softball coaching, a coach needs to always be positive in order to turn everything positive. Don’t let your negative emotions ruin that.