Coaching: Sometimes, you have to let them just play

My friend Nathan and I filled in tonight for our kids’ Futsal soccer practice due to both coaches being away on business.  I haven’t coached in some time, and found that “watching” plenty of practices is much different that actually “coaching” the practices!

Futsal board

Most of us go into each work day with a plan, right?  Task list, tackling the heavy lifting first off, setting the tone for a productive day.  For me, I need to have an outline for the day to keep straight, because my mind is always curious, and I need tools to stay focused.  At times though, you have to learn just by doing. That’s challenging, because you can make mistakes.  But without doing so, how do you continue to learn?

I found out last night that when you’re not used to running a practice, the immediacy of the moment can create some chaos.  8 ten-year old girls, two Futsal balls and a full basketball court – what to do?

We decided to let them play.  We also did our best to actually keep our mouths shut for the most part.  And you know what?  The girls figured out some things on their own by “playing” Futsal, without a lot of interference from Nathan and me.  Field awareness, passing lanes, foot skills and moves, the girls figured some tactics out for themselves.

I learned something valuable, and that’s to stay out of the way more.  Much like work, where we may over-think issues instead of going with what feels “right”.  The aspect of “play” can make a huge impact on everything we do.

Fundamentals in football or business are essential, there’s no debating that.  It’s what comes after that development process – execution of tactics, reaching that goal you’ve set that is important. Getting there requires the confidence in your abilities to allow your process to flow.

What do you think?   Comments are welcome!

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9 Comments Add yours

  1. Betty says:

    Please be careful with your KNEE!!!!!!   

  2. Nothing crazy, just helping…not actively playing Futsal!

  3. Rick
    Your point is extremely valid. Just playing is great advice. I have a tendency to over think things in golf, maybe I need to loosen up just a bit. Thanks.
    Cheers
    Jim

  4. Jim, I’ve never asked what you do career-wise. Does this concept factor into work for you?

  5. With the game “team handball” it’s a problem between the limit to drive everyone or let’s all them play.
    Some time, i think expérience is very important to say nothing else during a match play.
    The culture is important so. Anglo-saxon people, latins or scandinaviàn people Gers not the same. This différence running always… I think.

    1. First, thank you for the re-blog. Kind of you to do so.

      As to your comment, I’m not clearly understanding what you’re saying. Can you clarify for me so I can respond in kind?

      Thanks for the interaction 🙂

      1. I explain again (sorry my english is poor)
        I am leader of a handball girls team.

        I think, it is important:
        Let’s play the girl (80%)
        Give some informations to the players (20%)

      2. Yes! I like your approach 🙂

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