Be Patient When Coaching Girls There is much to coaching girls soccer that has nothing to do with soccer at all. Coaches need to understand the emotional needs of their female players as well as their physical needs. To best support and encourage girls, the coach needs to be prepared to offer advice, listen to issues, and support their athletes.
To do this, those coaching girls soccer must be very patient. Often, the root of a conflict in practice lies with a girl dealing with a personal problem. If you see something unusual like a player lashing out at another or rebelling from authority, work with that athlete to find out the real problem. Then, you not only help your team stay on track, you also help your player grow and develop personally.
All Business on the Soccer Field Coaches need to draw a line between before and after practice and during practice. While on the field, coaches should be all business while coaching youth soccer. This will help their athletes mentally prepare for practice and perform appropriately, pushing all other thoughts from their head and allowing them to concentrate.
If a coach allows those lines to blur, problems will creep up as athletes allow their questions, anxieties, and excitement spill over into how they play the game. This will make it more difficult for the coach to improve the team as a whole.
Use Visualization Female athletes are usually more adept at visualization techniques than male athletes, and coaches can use this to their advantage. Before games, or even practices, the coach should have all athletes sit or lie down with their eyes closed. The coach should walk the athletes through a visualization of the game. This visualization should start with a description of the surroundings and the distractions athletes might encounter, like parents in the stands or a too-bright sun. This is so that athletes are prepared for these realities when they occur and better able to push them away and concentrate on the game.
Next, the coach should walk the athletes through their preparation for the game, including a warm up and the first glimpse of the other team. Then, the coach takes the athletes through the game, encouraging athletes to see themselves as fast, fierce players with confidence that rely on their teammates. This puts players in the right frame of mind and encourages them to work together. Finally, the coach walks the players through winning the game, giving them something positive to work toward.
When coaching girls soccer, authority figures should employ visualization frequently. It is an excellent mechanism to help athletes calm and center themselves as well as see the outcome they wish to produce. However, for visualization to work, the coach has to be on board with it completely. If athletes get the impression that these techniques are at all silly, they will immediately lose their effectiveness.