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 bracket… Clearly, it had nothing to do with the coaches tactics. It’s so sad that this sort of behavior happens. And the worst part for me is that it seems to be… accepted. Because a lot of coaches look from a, in my view, wrong perspective. They have a perspective that judges people (and of course kids) on winning or losing. But the point about coaching is that it is not about winning or losing. It’s about seeing opportunities to teach, make people grow and learn from every situation they will find themselves in.

My second point is, everyone should enjoy sports no matter the result. You should arrive and play with joy, go home feeling fulfilled and be excited for the next practice, game or tournament. Because probably, later in life, you will do something completely different and you will still enjoy playing the sport.

Us coaches, we have a moral obligation to the people that we train every day. And it’s our duty to do what’s best for them instead of what’s best for us. Because, it’s not about us. It’s about them. We serve in order to make other people grow. That’s what we’re supposed to do. Start seeing things from a human perspective.  Is this how you would treat someone else? Or yell at people when they make a (in your view and judged by your observation) mistake even if they had the right intentions? Do you do this at your job? Do you yell contentless nonsense to your co-workers? If you do, please tell me how many situations where solved with this one-sided aggressive attitude. Do you yell at your baby or toddler when he or she doesn’t know how to run?

If the above questions make sense. THEN WHY DO WE ACCEPT THIS IN SPORTS?

Think about it from this perspective. There are so many things that we can teach a new generation of people. Understand your own emotions and never let them control you. Keep a clear observation and talk about facts to improve other people.

Let this be our standard.

By: Yannick van der Putten

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