Positive Coaching Alliance

 

As part of a targeted effort to provide the most positive experience for our players, Elmsford Little League established a partnership with Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) in 2016.  PCA works with coaches, organizational leaders and parents to more effectively teach young athletes not only how to win, but also how to learn about teamwork, discipline, respect and goal-setting through their sports experience.  PCA’s mission is to develop Better Athletes, Better People.  Over the past 2 years, over 200 ELL coaches and parents have attended PCA workshops. ELL is committed and visibly displays these principles on banners and posters at the fields and in every dugout.  

Coaches

Our ELL coaches determine the kind of experience our players have with baseball and softball. We expect our coaches to strive to win while pursuing the more-important goal of teaching life lessons through sports.  

“Honoring the Game” is a PCA principle about sportsmanship encouraging coaches, parents and athletes to respect all aspects of their sport. The ROOTS of Honoring the Game is an acronym which stands for better respecting: Rules, Opponents, Officials, Teammates and Self.

There are two ways to win and feel successful in sports. The way we typically think of winning, Scoreboard Winning, means that we have outscored our opponent. The other way to win and feel successful is to take a Mastery Approach. This type of winner focuses on effort, learning, and recovering from mistakes. Being a mastery winner is more important, more satisfying and should be the end goal. PCA uses an acronym, ELM (Effort, Learning, Mistakes are OK), to keep coaches, athletes and parents mindful of a Mastery focus.

Parents                                            

Parents have an especially important role to help their child become a Triple-Impact Competitor® who makes self, teammates and the game better.  Second-Goal Parents  need to recognize that there is a Little Picture and a Big Picture in youth sports. The Little Picture concerns things like whether the child is playing the right position, the team is winning, etc. The Big Picture, which often gets drowned out by the Little Pictures, is about what the child is learning from youth sports.

There are two broad goals in youth sports: striving to win and building character so kids develop into successful, contributing members of society. As important as winning may seem, Second-Goal Parents let coaches and athletes worry about the first goal of scoreboard results. Second-Goal Parents have a much more important role to play: ensuring their children take away from sports lessons that will help them be successful in life. That is the Big Picture.

Tips for Honoring the Game

Before the Game

●     Commit to Honoring the game in action and language no matter what others may say or do.
●     Tell your children before each game that you will be proud of them regardless of how well they perform.

During the Game

●     Fill your children’s “emotional tanks” through praise and positive recognition to help them play their best.  Fill their teammates too!
●     Do not instruct your child during game action or at breaks.  Let the ELL Coaches coach!  Always feel free to communicate with the coach outside of game time.
●     Cheer good plays by both teams.
●     If you disagree with an umpire’s call, Honor the Game -- BE SILENT!  If other spectators yell at umpires, gently remind them to Honor the Game. 
●     Sit back, have fun and enjoy the game and this special time of your life.

After the Game

●     Thank the umpires - it’s a tough job at times for little pay.  Especially thank the youth umpires!
●     Thank the coaches for their commitment and effort.
●     NO Post Game Analysis (PGA).  Let the coaches and athletes lead those conversations. If your child is leading the conversation, it is alright to engage in a supportive way by asking open-ended questions and we encourages parents to say, "I just love watching you play baseball/softball." Parents should not analyze and criticize their children after a game, especially when they are already doing it to themselves.
●     Give truthful and specific praise not just the typical “good game”.  For example, “I saw how well you got under the fly ball.”
●     Tell your children again that you are proud of them whether the team won or lost.

Additional PCA information is available on www.positivecoach.org                                              

 

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