Coaching Youth Sports

One of the most challenging, yet rewarding, tasks a parent can take on is coaching a youth sport team. In this role, you have the opportunity to (a) create a positive environment where kids can develop a love of sport, (b) teach new skills that they can develop over time, (c) foster teamwork and friendships, and (d) instill a sense of fun associated with being physically active. You also, though, have to organize practices, interact with league officials, and handle parents who do not always know the best ways to support their athlete-children. And, if you coach older children, the pressure to win can create an unhealthy focus on “being the best” that may lead some kids to drop out of sport altogether. To help you be the best youth sport coach possible, we encourage you to read our “Coaches’ Guide to Developing a Positive Youth Sport Team.” Inside it you will find information and suggestions to help you enjoy yourself as you create a positive experience for the kids. You also may want to visit Michigan State University’s Institute for the Study of Youth Sports (ISYS), which contains additional helpful information for those working with kids in sport.