Sunday, December 07, 2014

Who's Coaching Your Child?

I just dont think he wanted to coach. In fact I am certain he was fulfilling some sort of community service requirement. Whatever the reason he was not interested in teaching an awkward twelve year old with no experience playing organized baseball. Between humiliating me as I struck out in the batting cage to assigning my permanent spot on the bench, my coach took all of the fun out of playing Little League. It was an experience which I hope to help my children avoid as they venture into the world of youth sports.

Fortunately my children have had a number of good coaches, men who have shown an understanding of the age range they were dealing with as well as knowledge of their sports. But there have been the occasional bad apple like the coach who did not understand the mechanics of throwing a baseball. One of the team moms (a former college softball player) gave him a tutorial in baseball 101, a somewhat awkward situation for us all. A group of dads wound up coaching the team for the rest of that season. While I enjoyed working with the children, I could not help but think there must be a way to find out about a coach before paying my childrens registration fees.

If you have children who enjoy playing youth sports take time to research area programs. You likely will not be able to pick a coach but you can tell a lot about the people involved by looking at the attitudes of the organization as a whole. As parents we have a responsibility to learn as much as we can about the men and women standing on the sidelines with our children. Get involved. Research the programs available. Do what you can to keep your child from missing out because of a bad coach.

What experiences have you had with youth programs in your area?