by Jay Fadden
I coach my youngest son’s travel basketball team. I have been coaching basketball in some capacity for over a decade. I have coached my other children, Amelia and James, as well. It has allowed me to spend more time with my kids in a different environment, and I have many happy memories. As a coach, I believe that discipline and focus are important not only on the court, but also as a life lesson. Some might say I am a tough coach, but I also try hard to make sure the boys are enjoying themselves. During games, I try to stay positive. However, I set the bar high for my players. It is important that they try to better themselves and that I don’t limit their potential. Wins and losses do not concern me. I am more concerned with playing as a team and getting better each practice and game.
Last weekend, we had a tournament. I am always a bit harder on Ethan than I was on James and Amelia because I expect a bit more. I also know that after the game I can tell them I love them and give them a hug. As I arrived home after the last game, Shirley suggested that I might have been too tough on Ethan. It surprised me, but I took a moment to think about it and decided to ask him. He responded that he likes when I am tough because it makes him a better player. Well, I thought some more and asked him again, and got the same response. However, I think Shirley is right. I probably was too tough on Ethan.
I think that we have moments when we can lose focus. As I have set the bar high for each player and the team, I also need to set that same standard for myself. I need to be more patient with my team. While I still should expect them to be focused, I need to be more positive in my reinforcement, starting with my son.
Young people face many challenges today, and as a coach, I don’t need to be one of them. I have practice tonight and I am going to try a new approach with Ethan and the team. Say a prayer it works! Have a great day, and thanks for reading.