If you know me, you know I’m a huge Potterhead. Below is one of my favourite quotes from the entire series.
“Youth cannot know how age thinks and feels. But old men are guilty if they forget what it was to be young.” – Dumbledore
As a coach it’s crucial to try and put yourselves in an athlete’s shoes – and essentially be who they need at that moment in time. I wear (or try to wear) a number of different hats on a daily basis as I work with some athletes who are as young as 11 or 12, all the way up to teenage and early 20’s college athletes.
What each of these athletes needs can be very different. For the young ones, I try to remember what it was like when my father took me to a trainer at 12 and being intimidated by the older athletes and being self-conscious about how I was performing the exercises. For these kids it’s important to make AHP a welcoming environment, and just to make the training process fun.
For a nineteen year old who is injured and trying to get healthy and ready to go back down to college baseball – my role is vastly different.
The point is – it all starts with putting yourself in their shoes.
Athletes don’t care what you know until they know how much you care.
This may sound cliche to an extent, but in my experience it holds true. The lowest common denominator is to genuinely care for your athletes (or players). If you can do that they’ll buy in.