Volunteers are an integral part of our youth athletic program and volunteers of all types are greatly appreciated. Whether you’re a professional athlete or have little knowledge of the game; if you can volunteer five hours a week or one hour a week; whether you’re a natural leader or would rather follow – as long as you want to demonstrate positive team-building and sportsmanship to the team, we are happy to have you! Additionally, volunteering to coach (or help coach) your child’s team is an amazing experience both you and they will cherish.
If you have already signed-up to volunteer – THANK YOU! Information to complete the registration process is below: Complete the mandatory background check for all coaches.
- Consistency: treat all players the same to the best of your ability, especially when coaching your own child.
- Model Behavior: the children all look to you so be enthusiastic and model the behavior you want them to display.
- Clearly State and Teach the Rules: this can be the sport’s rules or your individual team rules. Most children like structure and want to hear what is expected of them.
- Come with a Plan: come to practices and games with drills and lineups, it is difficult to teach kids when you keep changing your mind on how you want to run a drill. Expect to have multiple drills at one time, so children aren’t frequently waiting for their turn to practice.
- Encourage and Accept Help: if another parent wants to help, take it, the more adults that assist, the smoother practices and games will go.
- Support the Officials: these are not certified referees and umpires so keep that in mind; no one is perfect.
- Remember- the League is Recreational: as a Leisure Services program we want the kids to have fun while they learn, winning is not everything.
- Teach Good Sportsmanship: whether your team wins or loses, remind players to be humble and kind.
- Positive Reinforcement and Encouragement: avoid constantly telling a child they are doing something wrong, instead let the child know when they do something correct and continuously encourage them.
- Have Fun!
Coaching Your Own Child
Coaching your own child can be both rewarding and difficult. Make an effort to avoid favoring your child, but also do not ignore your child to demonstrate they are not receiving preferential treatment. Remember – this should be fun for both of you!
Interaction with Parents
Often times, parents feel they do not know enough about a specific sport to assist, so it is helpful to let them know you can use all skill levels. Some parents want to actively participate and some may want to watch you coach their child while they cheer them on. Always accept parent volunteers, the more adults, the easier it is to manage practice or a game and the more productive your team will be! Be sure to communicate the plan with parents, so they can assist in executing and communicating it to the players. If you encounter a parent with whom you are not comfortable communicating, please contact Alex Hildman at the Sportsplex at (319) 291-0165 or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Practice Drills & Techniques
Below are a few websites with helpful tips and drills for each sport. Take some time to look at these websites as well as explore the wealth of information available on the web.
- Baseball/Softball Drills
Softball Performance Practice Plans & Drills
- Basketball Drills
60 Fun Basketball Drills and Games for Coaches
- Football Drills
Practice Drills Flag Football Tips & Drills
- Soccer Drills
Say Soccer: Drills & Techniques
- Provide adequate supervision to all players, NEVER leave players unattended.
- Never leave after a game or practice until parents and guardians have arrived.
- Keep good records of any event especially in the case of an injury.
- We encourage having a 2nd adult in attendance at practices to reduce the risk of being unjustly accused of inappropriate behavior.
- Never give a player a ride home without communicating it with a parent/guardian beforehand.
The well-being of your players must be your number one concern, but accidents and incidents do happen no matter how well prepared. Do your best to minimize risks and chances for injury. Remember to allow for water breaks especially during hot weather conditions. Here are some helpful first aid tips and reminders:
For minor injuries and strains/sprains think RICE:
- R: Rest the injured area to avoid further injury
- I: Ice the injured body part to cool the area to relieve discomfort and reduce swelling, ice for 20 minutes then remove it for 20 minutes
- C: Compress the injured area to reduce swelling
- E: Elevate the injured limb above the heart when possible to prevent swelling
Strains/Sprains – localized pain, limited range of motion, swelling and skin discoloration possible.
Dislocation/Fracture – pain, deformity, and loss of function. Call for medical attention and do NOT move the player.
Heat Related Issues
Heat Cramps – sudden, painful muscle contractions
Heat Exhaustion – weakness, dizziness, profuse sweating and/or rapid pulse
Heat Stroke – high body temperature, red hot and dry skin, rapid pulse, difficulty in breathing, convulsions, and collapsing
For heat related issues, move the player to shade and cool the body as quick as possible. If heat stroke is suspected, call for help IMMEDIATELY.