As the season comes to an end it's very important to take every experience on and off the court into consideration. One of the best ways to grow and learn as a coach is to go through a reflection period, where you ask yourself what you've learned and what you may have done differently.
At times coaches forget that their players can teach them a thing or two throughout the season. Let’s break down 3 things your players may have taught this season.
One thing we all have the ability to lack is patience. From my own personal experience as a coach, patience can be hard to have in the heat of a game or practice. Especially working with youth and dealing with the day-to-day ups and downs.
With that being said, there are seasons in which patience is tested in different ways. Some coaches are forced to deal with players that need extra attention or one that has potential but doesn't understand how to maximize it. During these times, that “in the moment” patience is crucial to developing as a coach because it requires you to have self-control and trust in the process. Without it, and a poor reaction, one might push players away.
Maybe you had a player or two on your team this year that's forced you into this type of patience. Do
Coaching requires a certain level of organization and structure. With too much structure, there can be a lack of flexibility at times. It's important to remember that every player won’t fit into your structure or plan the exact way you want. If you had a player on your team that you knew would benefit with some adjustments, and made changes, then you developed a level of flexibility! It can be difficult to feel like you're giving in or catering to a certain player but at times it's necessary for the benefit of the team.
Each year is a new chapter in a coach's story. Every year has new challenges that require a coach to increase their level of dedication to what they do. You’ve become more dedicated if you found yourself doing something new to help your team. Maintaining high energy levels or feeding off of your player's energy is another indication that your team has influenced your dedication. Players push us in unforeseen ways to become more dedicated each year and for that we have to be thankful for growth each year.
In a nutshell, players have helped you grow in ways that might not be obvious. Self-reflection is important for growth as a coach and will ultimately lead to more success for your basketball program each year!