Author

Yannick van der Putten

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Loyalty is the heart and soul of any meaningful relationship. A sports team provides the perfect platform for loyalty. Giving of one’s self to others is the foundation of loyalty. Many of our greatest experiences in life can be found in our relationships. At its core, loyalty is about reliability. And in the team setting reliability is a necessary ingredient for success. Loyalty is found in the physical, intellectual, emotional, and social support we provide others. It is the bond of loyalty players have to teammates that forges a coherent team. It is players willingly committing to each other and going out of their way to ensure someone else’s needs are met. However, getting along with others doesn’t mean the obligation to endure wrongful actions. The Blame Game Nothing destroys a relationship faster than blame. When you shift fault to another you cast yourself as a victim. In the court…

Youth sports can become an all encompassing component of childhood, and for that matter, parenthood.  As we shuttle kids to practices, games and tournaments, we can easily forget about the big picture. We can lose sight of the main reasons we put kids in sports in the first place.  If we want our children to be high performers – and most importantly, happy young athletes – then we cannot lose perspective. We need to take the time to reinforce 5 core messages for our children.  Whether they are 6 or 16, if you remind your athlete about these 5 things, it will help them keep everything in perspective. “Have Fun!” Our kids play because it is fun.  Our kids train because it is fun.  When it stops being fun, then our kids lose interest and quit.  You can still push your kids, and they can still be great performers while…

You have just played really well individually, but your team has just lost in the dying minutes and a mistake that you made very early in the match has played a part in costing your side the game.  You know you have played well, you know that you made that one mistake and you also know what is going to come next. As you pack your kit away in the changing room, you are slower than normal as you fear you may be greeted by your parents who will be trying to make you feel better and will probably want to talk to you about the game.  They may well use the car journey home to go over the mistake and offer feedback on the things that you could have done better….. You have just witnessed your child play in an excellent sporting contest, they did so many things well…

Okay, we get it, there is no ‘I’ in ‘team’, however, there is no ‘I’ in ‘me’ either, is there? Still there are arguably ‘me teams’ in sport and business. Do we actually need to put effort in team coaching and place individual egos aside? More so, how does a team transform into a ‘we team’? From recent sports and business readings, interviews and papers, a simple foundation was constructed, named; WE TEAM. Work first. There is no need for a team bonding session if your team hasn’t gone through some ups and downs first. Set rules and expectations to use as a starting point and actually experience working together first. Educate. As a coach or leader, you are not only a mentor but also a teacher. Meaning, you create challenges but also values. Educate skills by game like drills, use deliberate play and practice. Be an example, lead and lift the standards. ~~~ Tasks. Not…

Dear Out of Control Sports Parent, You. Yeah, you. The one shouting “Get the rebound!!!” to your kid. The one with the heart palpitating so loudly that you cannot contain yourself. The one yelling and complaining about the coach. The one hollering at the 13-year-old referee.  The one angry at my kid for making a mistake. The one hollering at the kids who made a mistake running the scoreboard in a recreational tournament in a meaningless pool play game. Yeah, you, the one whose spouse won’t sit next to you during the game. The one who is micromanaging every aspect of the game and turning what would be a pleasant normal Saturday into a heightened state of anxiety for all of us, including your fellow parents stuck next to you for today’s game, this season, and our kids’ childhoods. PLEASE STOP! PLEASE CALM DOWN! Do you notice the Normal Sports…

The title says it all.  Although this article has been taken from an American source and in the UK we do not have college scholarship programmes, it would be naive of us in the UK to think that we are not suffering similar issues.  In many ways the message to parents is very much the same. The original article was written by Danielle Braff, Chicago Tribune Nov. 17, 2014. Youth sports long have been seen as a ticket to a college scholarship, and as college costs go ever higher, parents may be putting more pressure on their children to snag some of that cash. “It’s become a win-at-all-costs culture,” said Jason Sacks, executive director of the Positive Coaching Alliance, a Chicago-based national nonprofit organization founded at Stanford University to encourage positive coaching experiences for coaches, teachers and parents. But as the stakes grow, the children are the ones losing, according to…

Due to poor behaviour on the touchline the game of rugby union which prided itself on the behaviour of its players, parents, coaches and referees has recently introduced sanctions in competitions that could lead to schools being docked points or being thrown out of  competitions. Have things finally gone too far? There is no doubt that there has been an increase in aggression on the side-lines of children’s sport over the last decade.  What has caused this? With the ever increasing professionalism and commercialisation of sport at younger and younger ages there is an over-emphasis on winning, this at an age when children should be having fun and learning the fundamental movement and sports skills that will ensure sporting success at later stages. This emphasis on results and winning increases the expectations and thus pressure placed on young sports people to perform. In a survey conducted in the UK in…

The other day my U10 boys won a game by 16-2. However, I would like to focus on something after the game that broke my heart. For some reason the coach of the opposite team thought it was necessary to rage at the kids for at least ten minutes. He made them do burpees, jumping jacks, push ups and kept yelling at them: ”That’s what you get if you’re a loser!” ”You should’ve fought harder!”. Actions which are in my view, contentless b%^#&@. After his ‘boot camp’ he started explaining the kids why they lost. To be completely honest with you, I’ve never heard so much nonsense in my life. ”Y’all should’ve fought harder!”. Afterwards, he started to explain and point out his tactics. Even if you’re a donkey, you would understand that if a team full of 9-year olds lost with 16-2 to a team within the same age…

Bright reflections playfully explore contemporary topics and aim to make you think. They are always teasing, sometimes provoking, but never judging.  With a flirt to sport and business… John Wooden once said about being a coach; ‘someone who can give correction without causing resentment’. Firmly believing in being a positive focussed coach, there are still different types of individuals that make up the team. Some types need that harsh comment to shake them up and do what they can and need to do. Others rather want you to show them where to look, but not what to look for. Thinking of how coaches in all sorts of levels act towards a certain performance, excluding the focus on the resources and timeframe, I collected information from readings and experiences and summarised this on the base of three ‘coach’ questions. Who is a coach? A coach is the same person in sport, home,…

Highly successful college athletes in the USA were questioned as to what was their worst memory of sport growing up.  The No. 1 response was ‘The Car Journey Home.’ Every week up and down the country the car journey home has now extended to the walk back to the car, the car journey home and the return back to the house. I hear it every Sunday after a match, where most often than not the dad delivers advice on the way back to the car, they can’t even wait until they get into the car. Why did you do that there?  Do you remember when you got the ball off the goalie, why didn’t you pass it down the wing?  Why didn’t you mark properly at the corner? All the child is doing more often than not is looking down or drinking their water pretending to really listen when actually…

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