When the children you coach are all grown up, what do you want them to say about you? That you sparked a love of game that continued into adulthood? That you provided life skills that made them better friends, parents, workers, and citizens? If so, how do you deliver those goals to kids? Below are links to free resources for coaches, who are important figures in the life of a child.


HOW TO COACH KIDS

The U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee and Nike partnered with Project Play to create the first website that aggregates the best coaching resources for youth. Included: A 30-minute course on how to structure practices for kids 12 and under, coach those with different needs, and make sports fun so everyone returns.

CALLS FOR COACHES

“Social and emotional skills” is the academic phrase for what the rest of us might call life skills. Project Play worked with the EASEL Lab at Harvard University to identify the evidence base for teaching social and emotional skills through sports. Read our findings and print a checklist to help those you coach, whether they’re children or adolescents.

TRAIN ALL COACHES

Project Play recognizes the value of training coaches in keeping kids playing sports. We know trained coaches do best. Kids are less likely to drop out if a coach is grounded in key competencies. Yet less than 20% of youth coaches have been trained in the past three years. Learn why this is a priority within the Project Play framework.


ALBERT’S ADVICE ON TRAINED COACHES

“I think a lot of the coaches really stay focused on winning the game, winning the game, and if your kid has a great arm, they try overuse it. That could be a red flag.”

— Albert Pujols, Los Angeles Angels


This page was inspired by Project Play 2020, comprised of leading organizations that aim to grow national sport participation rates and related metrics among youth. Member organizations (listed below) identified coach training as a key opportunity. Special thanks to: Nike and the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee for their partnership in developing How to Coach Kids; and the Susan Crown Exchange, a Project Play Champion, in advancing knowledge on social and emotional learning through sports.


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