Understand that all coaches aren't perfect

JonBuzby@hotmail.comSeptember 9, 2012 

It can take time for a player to adapt to a new coach, just like it takes time for a student to adapt to a new teacher. Some parents also need time for adjustment.

You may already be questioning if your child's coach is the right one to lead the team, regardless of what level your child is playing. And those parents who aren't, probably have kids who are.

Some parents coach for that exact reason -- then there's no question, at least in the parent's mind, whether the coach is getting the job done. But for parents who don't coach, and for kids who don't call the coach mom or dad, getting used to a new coach can be frustrating.

Try to remember that a coach is a volunteer doing the very best he or she can. Every decision made might not be the most popular one, or in the players' or parents' opinion, the best one, but it is the coach's decision and therefore has to be respected as long as safety is not an issue.

Let little things go.

Most of the little things parents get frustrated about usually aren't that big a deal in the grand scheme of things. Parents fight over little items such as how drills are run, if they are effective, and players' positions on the field. My rule of thumb as a parent is if it's not jeopardizing the safety of my child, I keep my opinions to myself.

Any time my son questions his coach, I tell him that it's a good experience to play for different coaches with varying personalities, just like I strongly believe it's good for kids to have teachers with different teaching styles. I remind him that part of being a good athlete is being adaptable to a variety of situations on and off the field. It's no different than at the varsity, college or professional level.

However, if you think there's an issue that needs to be discussed, don't be afraid to meet with the coach and ask why things are done a certain way. Just be sure to approach it this way: "Coach, I've never seen such and such handled that way, and am just wondering why you do it that way."

You still might not like the answer, but at least you'll have one.

Don't make the season any longer than it has to be -- accept early on that not every coach is perfect, and neither is every athlete or parent.

Reach Jon Buzby at JonBuzby@hotmail.com and follow him @JonBuzby on Twitter.

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