The first of a minis series based on difficult conversations that are required between coaches and between coaches and parents.
It is challenging to raise the conversation on some subject matters or topics, therefore they often become 'Taboo' where everyone avoids the discussion completely. I do not have the answers to it all, I can only offer my opinion and advice on the experience I have gained over 25 years of coaching.
The Taboo Series aims to raise awareness and knowledge around subjects and hopefully assist people to understand the reasons for certain decisions and to help you have some of those difficult conversations should they arise.
6 Minute read
A thought provoking post where I have been reflecting the past season of coaching and I would be interested to hear the thoughts of parents, coaches and players.
WHATS THE RUSH TO PUSH YOUNG PLAYERS?
We’ve all probably seen it…
By doing the above, is there something that is driving us to prove we are doing better than others?
What is success to you? Does it mean the same thing to you as it does to your coach? Your Club? Your child?
Perception. It is a strange phenomenon.
We as coaches, have a varying opinions on all of this, and it is the job for you as parents to consider and select the appropriate club or coach that you feel holds the best interest of you child at heart.
When reviewing the above bullet points, lets consider the following:-
We then need to throw in considerations; for example, if we already start playing a game with higher #vs# and the score becomes to one sided, do we add even more players onto the pitch in an attempt to make it more competitive? i.e regulation may state 7v7; but now we end up playing 11v9...
Whether we agree or not with the rules and regulations by the governing body, they are there for ALL to abide by, for the best interest of the players.
Football is forever evolving - do we take a leaf out of another FAs book (for example Sweden) and go the other way and reduce the number of players in small sided games per age as seen below? Or Belgium? Where they implement 2v2 in the early ages for games.
When thinking about all of the above, I would also like to place some additional information into the mix to consider for all parents and coaches....birth bias.
I personally believe it is vitally important for all involved to have a basic understanding of what Birth Bias is; its potential effect in youth sports (not specifically football), and even further, the education system as whole.
Understanding birth bias, age appropriate learning for young players and doing what is right for each individual to aid THEIR development is essential.
Of course a measurement of some sort is required to separate children, in this example of Birth Bias we use the School Years from September to August.
It's doesn't take a rocket scientist to acknowledge that children born in September have been living on the planet for potentially up to 12 months longer than others.... and yet all children in the same year group are measured, judged, assessed and evaluated with the same tests, exams, or in the coaching world, potentially perceived as 'better' or 'weaker' than others. How is this fair?
I believe for players playing "across" different age bands, all coaches and all parents should understand the “Quarters” in which their children are born in more depth rather than just the standard school year grouping.
With better knowledge of this, training sessions, fixtures/games, squad selections are vital to help each child be the best they can be in a competitive environment that is appropriate for THEM.
The beauty of our beautiful game is that we all have our own opinions (and some very strong ones - myself included LOL) on vast and varied areas of the game on and off the pitch.
If the above helps anyone to think differently, or read about something they have never considered before then that's part of my job done. And of course, I look forward to hearing your thoughts or comments as always.