Tryout Season is here.
This is always a very interesting time of year in high-level travel softball, I am sure it is probably the same in other sports too. Imagine the trade deadline in major league baseball, the free agency period in the NFL or the end of the year movement in the NBA. Combine these specific times of the year for all three major American sports and you get a taste of what starts to happen right before the PGF national softball championship and the second week of August.
First, you have coaches jumping organizations and taking most of their players with them. You have players who would be content to stay where they are, but instead the parent has already made a deal with another team that they will be bringing their kids to that team. Then you have the coaches who bounce from organization to organization so much the mere mention of their name invokes the question “who do they coach for now”?
I get it ‘always do what is best for your kid’ is the advice I give to parents, however there is a right way to do that. First, parents need to agree that their kid can only play for a Transformational Coach.
Transformational coaching is other-centered, coaches use their power and platform to nurture and transform players. Players follow these coaches because they sense their authenticity.
Transformational coaches are dedicated to self-understanding and empathy, viewing sports as virtuous and virtue-giving discipline. They believe young people can grow and flourish in sports in a way that is more liberating and instructive than can be achieved through most any other activity.
We also see players looking for a “good” team to move too, instead of helping to make the team they are on, good. During the college recruiting process, I get college coaches asking me two things, who are your best softball players and then the follow-up question is “tell me about their parents.”
Second, the best advice I can give to the athlete and the parent is, STOP!