3 Powerful Questions Student Athletes Should Ask the Coach
Student athletes who wish to play their best while also embracing their leadership and role model status can benefit from having a brief 1-1 meeting with the coach before each season. Coaches generally welcome meeting with student athletes and see kids who reach out to them as responsible, not a burden. To help you help your son or daughter get started, consider the following big questions:
- What are the team rules and player expectations? This question is designed to help kids raise their awareness around important issues, including (but not limited to) grade expectations, social media usage, social responsibilities, and physical/nutrition training routines. Often team rules are posted online these days, so be sure to ask for the link or a hard copy if one is available — and ask for clarity if anything is vague or unclear.
- How can I best help the team? Student athletes are encouraged to ask specific questions about their individual role, including what they can do to most help the team. In some instances kids might be instructed on formal specifics to their position (i.e. how to get in scoring position), while in other cases a kid might learn of how he or she can help informally (i.e. how to keep team spirits up from the sidelines).
- What things should I work on individually to help the team? This is an important question for kids to ask the coach as the answers could prove to be invaluable. For example, an otherwise starter on the team might benefit by learning from the coach how to improve grades to regain eligibility, while another kid might discover that the reason she isn’t being used as much is due to her conditioning not being where it needs to be on the floor at the end of games. In some cases, just learning that the coach really does have hope and confidence for future development is enough to help a reserve player stay motivated to succeed.
Student athletes who are proactive and committed to team success should try and find a few minutes to meet with the coach before the start of each season. Be respectful of the coach’s schedule, prepare questions ahead of time, and be sure to thank the coach for any feedback provided during the meeting. These kinds of meetings are great for information gathering, building rapport, and developing a strong and positive team culture.
Don’t sit around and simply hope for success — make it happen by doing your part and becoming fully aware of how you can best help the team.