They say that sport activities are good for health. But sports also mean money. We advise counting it when preparing for the next ski season, changing our bike, or getting involved in a new athletic discipline. That moment, when money becomes a major element of sports, also comes when our child starts to play sports and we must pay the school or coach for this. Because this is an important moment in the life of your child, it is of importance to be sure that the individual we are paying meets our expectations, and that our children are well cared for.
First of all, a children’s coach must be aware that, the sports of children and adolescents differs from adult athletics not only due to different physical capabilities, but also due to a difference in motivation when it comes to children playing sports, and their different psychological needs. Children have different expectations when it comes to sports than that of adults, and a different threshold for stress and repeatability of workouts. A competent children’s sports coach will also be aware of the changes which occur with the age of a child and can adjust their requirements and behavior based on the developmental stage of the child.
If a coach is unable to satisfy a child’s basic expectations and needs, it can lead to the child’s dissatisfaction with sports, frustration, bad experiences, and thus potentially a total the cessation of sporting activities. On the other hand, working with a competent trainer can help allow a child to fully realize their potential and gain much happiness from sports; as well as help develop skills which will be of use to the child in their adult life outside of athletics.
Psychological analysis show, that what children need during playing sports is: having fun and learning new skills, not winning, and rivaling. Therefore, when choosing a coach, it is of utmost importance to take note of their approach toward the achievements of his pupils. The way in which he informs the children about accomplishments, or what he or she praises them for, will impact how the children define success. Making winning the end goal regardless of how it is accomplished, and paying attention primarily to the score; the coach will formulate in the children’s minds the idea that the only way to be happy is to come in first no matter what means must be used to get there. Meanwhile paying attention to the performance level and skills, the trainer will teach the children to draw satisfaction from a job well done and to acquire new skills, not just a victory. Because an individual can only be accountable for their own abilities and has no impact on the skills of their competition, shaping an attitude in children which is geared towards winning can ultimately result in discontent, dissatisfaction, and frustration. Research shows that by setting tasks or improving skills in sports brings better results, as it causes the learning process to be a pleasure and increases the motivation to act.
Amongst behaviors which children appreciate in their trainers were mainly; devoting attention and commitment to workouts and competitions, consistent action, and initiative on the part of the coach. For a child, other important traits in a coach are; patience, a peaceful and understanding approach, and decisiveness – they do not like shouting and a lack of loyalty from their trainer. It’s also important for a coach to respect their players and include them in the decision-making process – children want to know why they are expected to perform certain tasks or behave in a certain way. Gaining knowledge brings them satisfaction, and a competent coach should explain ambiguities in an accessible and understandable manner. For a sport to be satisfactory for a child, their relationship with their coach should be based on freedom and trust. A child should feel they can talk to their coach about their problems and that they can trust them.
In the child – coach relationship, it is only natural that the coach becomes an authority figure and role model, so it is of great importance what behaviors and values are held in high esteem by him or her as an individual. A competent school coach understands this and imparts on his players not only the techniques, but also an understanding of “fair play” and values which they should use to guide them in life.
Appropriate behavior of the coach and the ability to adapt to his or her charges, children will not only reap the joy of participating in sports, but also fully develop their abilities, which will be useful to our children not only today but also in adulthood. It’s therefore worth it to check out the person who’s hands we are entrusting our most prized possession, so that one day we do not reproach ourselves for those hands being merely expensive… ■
Because an individual can only be accountable for their own abilities and has no impact on the skills of their competition, shaping an attitude in children which is geared towards winning can ultimately result in discontent, dissatisfaction, and frustration. Research shows that by setting tasks or improving skills in sports brings better results, as it causes the learning process to be a pleasure and increases the motivation to act.