Day 3 – Coachability

This is the third day of our team’s virtual training camp. Each day for the next 10 days, there will be a short assignment for you to do to get ready for our season. These assignments are mandatory for players and coaches. Parents are also encouraged to participate.

Today we are going to talk about one of my main goals for the season… To be the most coachable team in Ontario. It is something that we’ll all take pride in.

The Most Coachable Team

We want people to watch us play and say…

“Wow! That is a well coached team!”

Being “well coached” has very little to do with the coach. It has everything to do with what the players are doing. A coachable team plays and practices together AS A TEAM. They execute the things they’ve learned and take pride in the sum of all the little things they do well. They’ve clearly worked hard to eliminate obvious bad habits.

Let me give you a few examples of some signs of a “well coached” team:

  • They run a fast-paced and organized pre-game warm-up
  • They always seem to be skating at full speed
  • They take pride in strong positional play in all three zones
  • Players take short shifts
  • They forecheck in waves
  • They backcheck relentlessly
  • They make organized and efficient line changes
  • Players skate hard to the bench on line changes
  • They attempt to execute a plan on all face-offs
  • Forwards routinely cover for defensemen who join in the rush
  • Everyone maintains a positive attitude and good sportsmanship
  • They don’t take selfish penalties
  • They don’t engage in arguments or funny business after the whistle
  • They stop on lost pucks
  • They are ready to go on the ice at practice as soon as the ice is ready
  • They support each other

How To Be Coachable

  1. Be open to new ideas and trying new things.
    Your coaches will challenge everyone involved with the team to always be open to new ideas and to take every opportunity to learn and improve.
  2. Strive to learn something new at every game and practice.
  3. Continually work to improve your listening skills.
    We can’t learn if we don’t listen. The better we listen, the faster we’ll learn. When someone is talking to you, be sure to look them in the eyes. Ask questions if you’re unsure about what you’ve heard.
  4. Be receptive to feedback.
    One things you’ll quickly learn about me is that I’m constantly correcting and encouraging players. Use feedback from your coaches as a mechanism to get better. Your coaches really, REALLY, want you to succeed.
  5. Don’t settle for “kind of” correct.
    We don’t reach an expert level of skill by doing things only partially right. Don’t tolerate yourself doing things only partially right, particularly when the skill is new or hard. When things are hard, keep practicing them until they get easier.
  6. Remember its okay to make mistakes.
    When you were first learning to skate, you fell down hundreds of times. You will make mistakes… and that’s okay. On-ice “mistakes” will be treated as learning opportunities – never punished. Players will be challenged to try new skills in game situations and to learn from their mistakes.
  7. Encourage, support and assist your teammates whenever you can.
    This is what a coachable team is all about.

Be Diligent In Your Preparation

“Come to the rink ready to learn and work hard.”

Coach Steve

Players will be expected to follow an individual training, nutrition, hydration and rest program both during the summer and in season.

The use of alcohol, non-medicinal drugs and smoking will not be tolerated. All of these will set back your training and ultimately be detrimental to the team. Real athletes just say no to this stuff. Take pride in the fact that you are physically strong and don’t do this stuff. 

Today’s Assignment:

  1. Can you think of an example of something that you’ve seen another team do that made you think that they were a well coached team? Post this into the team WhatsApp group.
  2. Think about what you can do to help you be more prepared for the upcoming season. Write it down. We’ll come back to this later.