Who has been volunteered by someone else to coach a soccer youth team? Or, who put their hand up to take on the role because no one else would? I think a lot of us have been in this situation before. Soccer coaching or anyform of sports related coaching can be one of the most daunting tasks you will ever undertake, however it can also be one of the most rewarding. The benefits are you get to spend time with your child, be outdoors and share a common interest with them. With everyone’s time being so precious these days, making time now to share your child’s interests will help cement your relationship with them for years to come.
If you find yourself in this position now as a new soccer coach, you may be feeling that you don’t have what it takes. You might know how to play soccer or you might not have any knowledge of the game at all. Don’t let this concern you as there is a lot of information onsoccer available and knowledge can be acquired.
I feel before anything else, there are certain qualities a coach should possess to be able to undertake the role effectively. These qualities can be applied to any coaching role, at any level, not just soccer coaching. These qualities that I have listed below are by no means exhaustive nor are they listed in order of importance as I feel they are of equal importance.
This quality is particularly important when coaching youth soccer.
Put the effort and the time in and you will be rewarded.
You might not have the necessary technical knowledge however if you are enthusiastic, the players will also be enthusiastic as it is infectious.
You are in a position where you need to have the trust of the players as well as their parents.
5. Open Minded.
Be able to accept others ideas
Don’t expect players to be punctual if you cannot. Set the example.
To be able to make decisions under pressure
To be able to handle difficult situations that may involve the players or coach.
9. Knowledge of how players learn.
By this I mean, not everyone learns the same way. For example at a soccer training session, if you are demonstrating soccer drills, some players will
understand the concepts straight away while others will need reinforcing through repetition.
Obviously the right attitude is paramount to enjoying your role and hopefully bringing success.
As I mentioned earlier, the qualities that I have listed here are not meant to be a final list, they are just the qualities from my experiences that I feel are important in a soccer coaching role and the ones that I strive for when coaching a team. Some are certainly harder to achieve than others at times ! When you look through the list, they are basically the same qualities that most people apply throughout their normal day, especially as a parent. So don’t feel overwhelmed if you are thrust into a soccer coaching job, the personal skills you require are nothing more than what you are already doing in your daily life.