I’m a crappy coach. Whether it’s been in sports, work or just life, I’m not good at translating how to do something to another person. I’ve known this for awhile, but it’s really come to the forefront since it’s become my part-time job in Malaysia. And now that my cross country coaching season is over, I’ve been tapped in to coach the junior girls basketball team. Uh oh, God help me.
(Truth be told the last time I coached anything was 17 years ago when I helped coach the Riffel basketball team immediately after I graduated. And all I really did then was hang out with my friends who were still on the team and run in the drills with them. No real coaching took place.)
The problem with me and coaching isn’t that I don’t like kids or don’t like sports or even that I don’t know about sports. The problem really is that I dislike, and am a bit afraid of, telling people what to do.
I mean, what makes me the expert to boss someone around about how to run a motion offense or use BEEF when their shooting or run 50 suicides? I certainly haven’t put in my 10,000 hours at coaching yet (see Malcolm Gladwell for that reference), and my mind simply works best in slow motion, which doesn’t lend itself to implementing a press break on the fly. And lastly, how/why do I care about any of it?
Just because I’m greying at the temples and played high school sports in the 90s, does that really make me qualified to coach anything?
Well, apparently in Malaysia it does, and I really have no choice but to go along with it because it’s one of my only paying gigs at the moment.
And to tell you the truth, while I’m no good at it, I do kind of enjoy the challenge and the weirdness of it.
I mean four months ago I was sitting in an office all day writing about Canadian farm financing and now I’m yelling at teenage girls to get back on defense. (God, I hate it when we get beat down the court!)
Maybe I will get used to telling people what to do after all. I’ll let you know how it goes. Now, where’s my f’n whistle?