For a coach, many athletes, parents and most ‘spectators’ don’t realize the amount of passion, training, hard work and commitment goes into the life of a coach. Being successful, learning to be a daily mentor, and managing life’s usual roadblocks becomes quite a daunting challenge.
Coaches are caregivers, more so than many realize and you’ll quickly see that they care so much it can seem like they care more for you than they care for themselves. Being a good coach in any sport requires pushing athletes so that they are able to realize their full potential. Coaches aren’t hurtful, they are there to give you constructive criticism and help you become the best you can be. Coaches are hired to create change and produce conducive results for you and your teammates.
It’s all about the team
It doesn’t matter if you’ve made it to the biggest stage or if you’ve failed at your season goal. What life lessons did you learn? A cheerleading season isn’t defined by the amount of trophies, rings or banners you won. A season is successful if you had a life experience, if you ‘hit zero’ at least once, or if you overcame an obstacle that you felt your team just wouldn’t get past. A true cheerleading coach wants you to succeed in life, not only as an athlete, but as an leader of your community, and getting experiences you wouldn’t get in any other sport.
Tough Love is Good Love
Let’s be honest, teenagers are full of emotions. But for a teenager, the bigger truth is that adulthood is just around the corner, and life will hand you way more ‘tough love’ than you could ever imagine. Your coach isn’t out to get you. They know first hand just how hard it is to be successful, and to be successful at anything, you’ve got to be able to handle the rollercoaster of ups and downs, changes, and moments that just don’t quite go your way. A coach knows your strengths and weaknesses and chooses their team based on not only your skills but what you can bring to that specific team as a competitive cheerleader.
They respect the sport
With experience comes wisdom, but the more you immerse yourself into the crazy world of cheerleading (competitive or not) the more you learn to respect it. The amount of work, the time it takes, and the number of puzzle pieces that you have to strategically put together can be a daunting. If you’ve been involved in cheerleading for a short time, and you don’t respect this sport, then you’re probably in the wrong activity. It’s complex, hard to learn, and 99% of the reason why normal people just don’t understand what we do.
Coaching is Life
For any coach, the success of creating and growing a team is always a main objective. Most coaches lose sleep over things going on in their gym. And contrary to popular belief or like most ‘jobs’, a coach’s job isn’t over when they get home from work. A true coach brings their work with them every day. Coaches are constantly answering calls and texts and always looking at videos to check out the competition, to scope out the next best thing in cheer and researching new ways to maximize a score sheet.
The next time you see your coach, just look at them and say “Thank you for all that you do.” Spread the love and remember that they put in all of their work to make you better, not just as an athlete but for your future as well.