Do we really know coaching to the fullest?


Jessica Balthazore

Picture Credit goes to Jessica Balthazore

Jackson Barber, Hour 1

Everyone thinks they know what a coach is the first time they see one. They are the ones dishing out the hard practices and exercises to prepare their player or team for the big game or competition no matter what. Is that really all the coaches do for the team though? Players like to remember the great coaches for reasons they barely remember the bad ones, but what makes a coach a coach? Coaches do more than just make practices and call plays. There is a relationship that you will see a lot between coaches and players that makes them better than the rest. That is the part of coaching we need to understand to truly know what makes coaches so great compared to others and understand why coaches do what they do.

To see further into coaching you need to have experience in coaching something and the more experience you have in it the more you understand what it likes. For this I interviewed The old head coach of the Spash Panthers Football team, Mr. McAdams, to get his insight and to help us further understand what coaching is like from his perspective. As a coach who has always had a large number of people, he states “Whether it’s a large team or a small team I don’t think it really matters. The most important thing is developing relationships no matter how big your team is. Those positive connections you can have with your players. When you have a large team there’s gonna be those competitive relationships for playing time.” With a large team comes a large amount of rivalry among players making the relationship between teammates stronger.

Along with that the coaches will recognize players and start building that coach and player relationship. To describe this relationship Mr. McAdams states, “I think one word that sticks out is trust. Every coach wants to get in a position where they trust their players. And I can’t imagine being a football player, and not trusting your coaching staff.” Mr. McAdams has been through thick and thin coaching the Spash Football Team and gives some good perspective in his interview about the relationship needed among coaches and players. However, he has a hard time comparing his views with the people who come to the games he coaches in. 

Picture Credit goes to Jessica Balthazore (Jessica Balthazore)

To help understand what goes on in coaching from a person’s perspective to a coach I needed another coach’s point of view who is not as used to coaching as Mr. McAdams but still understands coaching more than most. So I decided to interview Varsity Spash Football Coach Cooper Kerner for his insight on coaching and the relationship between players and coaching. “I think for a regular person who has never coached before, they obviously don’t see what goes on behind the scenes. They don’t see how hard coaches work. And I think they think ‘oh we should have done that or done that but there are a lot of things that go on in a coach’s head at that moment. Coach Kerner has coached for a long time and knows the things that go on in many coaches’ heads when playing the game. 

Perhaps a bad call was made in a game where we should have kicked a field goal instead of trying to score. But as Coach Kerner also states “But coaches have intuition and they’re going off their intuition, that gut feeling. And that gut feeling comes from preparation, watching film, previous coaching years, previous failures, and past experiences. So as an outsider, someone who’s just watching the game, I don’t think they know what goes on in a coach’s head.” Coaches do some extreme studies on how the other team plays to try to get the upper hand on them in a game by changing their plays or running certain formations that the audience may not understand.

Picture Credit goes to Jessica Balthazore (Jessica Balthazore)

Of course, people have different views on coaching even after knowing what it is because not every coach does the same thing for each sport. A definition from the International Coaching Community states “Coaching supports a person at every level in becoming who they want to be.” This definition is very similar to what both coaches have stated minus the relationship with the coach. This definition is defined for any sport or activity involving a coach as a simple outline of what it is.

If I had to define coaching in my own words it would be someone who helps support a person or a team to achieve a specific goal that they both share dearly. The reason coaches range from good to bad comes from that coach and player relationship to get them through to their shared goal. Coaches care immensely about the game and want their team or players to succeed and go as far as possible in life as well. That is the definition of coaching that will help us understand coaching to the fullest whether you’re just sitting in the stands watching the game or finishing your last season out on the field.