Archive for “Youth Coach” Tag

Thank Yourself

The Purpose of Youth Sports

I am a medical professional so there is a duty to talk about “problems” and “pain.” After enough years I would like to approach it with two different “P” words: purpose and progress.

thanks-1183283_640I have written a hundred plus articles on the topics of injury prevention, rehab, and sports performance but have not fully addressed something more profound…that youth sports are great.

Problems exist, and we talk about them a lot. Massive increases in over training injuries and dropping out of sports by 8th grade are at an all-time high. Also, the number of crazy parents and coaches doing embarrassing things seems to be growing daily.

But what is the purpose of youth sports? Some could say, to develop top notch athletes but more economist types would say to support a growing multi-billion-dollar industry.

I say it is about fun.

Youth Sports is Not a Job

Fun, determination, hard-work, success, failure, big highs, disastrous lows, and all the rest that goes into building strong character. Sports is only a good paying job for an infinitely small part of the population and at those levels, it still is a job.

Youth sports is not a job—it is an opportunity to participate in something a child loves.

The whole purpose is to give our children a chance to experience greatness for themselves, in whatever tiny amount, which in turn can carry on to so many other things. Opportunity for success and risk of failure is what sports is all about.

As we live in a crazy interconnected world, let’s take a moment and appreciate what you do. You show up day and night to provide children with the opportunity to live out their dreams, their fun and their chances at glory.

In these moments, we can watch fun unfold.

Thank Yourself

If you are reading this article, perhaps you have been visiting the IYCA for some period of time in the hopes of learning. Learning how to make youth sports better, safer and smarter. Learning how to maximize the fun and minimize all the other stuff.

So just take a moment and appreciate yourself, that you care about the well-being of children, and that you are a coach.

That sounds like a purpose. That feels like progress. So thank you.

Dr. Keith Cronin, DPT


About the Author: Keith J. Cronin

Keith CroninKeith J. Cronin is a physical therapist and owner of Sports and Healthcare Solutions, LLC. Keith currently supports US Operations for Dynamic Tape®, the “Original” Biomechanical Tape®, providing guidance for education, research, and distribution. He graduated with his Doctorate in Physical Therapy (DPT) from Belmont University in 2008 and later earned his Orthopedic Certification Specialist (OCS).

Prior to graduate school, Keith was a collegiate baseball player and top-level high school cross country runner. He also had the opportunity to work as a personal trainer (CSCS) prior to his career in physical therapy, providing a very balanced approached to educating fitness and rehabilitation. Keith has focused his career on the evaluation, treatment, injury prevention, and sports conditioning strategies for athletes, with particular attention to youth sports. He currently lives in the St. Louis, MO area with his wife and two daughters, Ella and Shelby.

 

Exactly How to Become The Best Youth Coach Possible…

Youth Coach

 

OK… Here are the definitions that were emailed to me.

 

What do you think?

 

(1) Balance
The ability to remain centered while center of gravity changes within static, dynamic, locomotive and non-locomotive action

 

(2) Rhythm
The ability to express timing

 

(3) Movement
The ability or aptitude to be locomotive through varying levels and directions

 

(4) Strength
The ability to express force

 

(5) Mobility
The ability to move within free and full ranges

 

(6) Tactical
The ability to demonstrate strategic or intentional action in order to produce a desired outcomes

 Become a Youth Coach

(more…)

IYCA: More, Much More

"The IYCA is unmatched as it pertains to the curriculum and practical application of its information. Since obtaining my Youth Fitness Specialists certification I have encountered several opportunities to stand as the expert of youth fitness in my area. The highlight was running a speed and agility camp with over 250 athletes from one of the top 2 soccer clubs in Texas. With my education from the IYCA, I’m confident that I’m, without a doubt, the most qualified youth coach in my area… hands down"

 

That was from my great friend and IYCA Family Member, Donovan Owens.

 

"Brian, our organization is a fantastic one. I say "our" because you and you supporting cast have made me feel like an important part of it since day one. That is not an easy thing to feel when you go to your first seminar as green as May grass! In a short year and a half I am viewed as an expert and respected as leading authority in my community as a youth conditioning specialist all because of the IYCA. The leadership I have witnessed and the education I have been empowered by are worth their weight in gold. I truly love when someone asks me where I got my education. I say " The IYCA" with
stout pride. I cannot convey what it means to me."

 

That, from the incredible Dale Speckman.

 

(more…)

Youth Sports Conditioning Goal Confusion – Part 2

 

 

Youth Sports Conditioning Principles

Soccer is no different than any other sport at the youth level – and I am not
inferring that anyone suggested otherwise – but every youth coach of every
sport, seems to think that the technical nuances of their sport are some how
more intricate or specialized than the skills of other sports… and that is not
the case.

 

And you can replace ‘Soccer’ with ‘Baseball’, ‘Basketball’ or any other sport
in the above paragraph.

 

The point of the Goal Confusion article can be summed up in one sentence –

 

Coaches and Trainers must learn how and when to apply certain teaching
techniques and when to let kids ‘learn’ things for themselves – and that is
especially true when we design drills in which we tell our players that the
success of a drill is based on the outcome rather than the form.

 

If you have been a subscriber for any length of time, you know exactly how
I feel about teaching skill – it is imperative and an ability that frankly, many
Coaches and Trainers lack (when in consideration of pedagogical science
and individual player temperament).

 

Having said that, by not letting young kids simply ‘have at it’ on their own
once in a while or at certain phases of development, we risk limiting free
nervous system adaptability at large – and this has been a prevalent problem
in North American sports for years.

 

We over-teach our youngsters and do not allow them free exploration
(which is at the crux of sport development) but then marvel at how much
more ‘naturally skilled’ international athletes often tend to be.

 

(more…)

Why We Confuse Our Young Athletes

 

 

Young Athletes Correct Coaching

 

Soccer is no different than any other sport at the youth level – and I am not inferring that anyone suggested otherwise – but every youth coach of every sport, seems to think that the technical nuances of their sport are some how more intricate or specialized than the skills of other sports… and that is not the case.

 

And you can replace ‘Soccer’ with ‘Baseball’, ‘Basketball’ or any other sport in the above paragraph.

 

Goal Confusion for young athletes can be summed up in one sentence –

 

Coaches and Trainers must learn how and when to apply certain teaching techniques and when to let kids ‘learn’ things for themselves – and that is especially true when we design drills in which we tell our players that the success of a drill is based on the outcome rather than the form.

(more…)