The Wrangler

The Effect of a Coach

Evelyn+Rosselot+%28right%29+receives+instruction+on+the+balance+beam+from+camp+coach+Angelica+Gillottl+as+Phoebe+Close+is+helped+by+Paula+Nation+during+summer+gymnastics+camp+at+the+Atlanta+Gymnastics+Center+in+Decatur+on+Tuesday%2C+June+5%2C+2012.+Gymnastics+camp+started+May+29+and+runs+each+week%2C+Monday+through+Friday%2C+until+August+15.
Evelyn Rosselot (right) receives instruction on the balance beam from camp coach Angelica Gillottl as Phoebe Close is helped by Paula Nation during summer gymnastics camp at the Atlanta Gymnastics Center in Decatur on Tuesday, June 5, 2012. Gymnastics camp started May 29 and runs each week, Monday through Friday, until August 15.

Evelyn Rosselot (right) receives instruction on the balance beam from camp coach Angelica Gillottl as Phoebe Close is helped by Paula Nation during summer gymnastics camp at the Atlanta Gymnastics Center in Decatur on Tuesday, June 5, 2012. Gymnastics camp started May 29 and runs each week, Monday through Friday, until August 15.

Evelyn Rosselot (right) receives instruction on the balance beam from camp coach Angelica Gillottl as Phoebe Close is helped by Paula Nation during summer gymnastics camp at the Atlanta Gymnastics Center in Decatur on Tuesday, June 5, 2012. Gymnastics camp started May 29 and runs each week, Monday through Friday, until August 15.

Allie Steward, Photojournalist

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There are not very many children nowadays who have never been involved in a sport or some form of exercise. Whether it is dance, soccer, gymnastics, or swimming lessons, the majority of kids are signed up for these activities in order to get exercise and develop more motor skills. While this can be a very healthy thing, this day and age, children are put into sports as soon as they are able to walk. The coaches surrounding these young individuals, have a much bigger impact on their lives than what is recognized.

    As a coach of young children myself, I have learned how much of an impact I have on these children. I coach children from ages three to twelve, and while all ages are impacted by their coaches, the younger the child, the bigger the impact. Most coaches only focus on the sport at hand, however with the youth, a coach is helping develop far more skills than just how to throw and catch a ball. These mentors help form the personality of the child, give them a love for a sport, or simply demonstrate how to work hard in order to achieve what you want. Strong work ethic is one of the most important skills a person will carry with them, and I believe that it begins with the sports, or activities in general, that the child is involved in.

    With older kids especially, I believe the coach has the ability to keep a child focused and dedicated, or drive them away from the sport completely. This creates a problem because it is found that people who are involved in something they love tend to stay safer and more motivated in all aspects of life. The physical benefits of sports also connect to the mental benefits. Kids who exercise regularly are releasing endorphins, which essentially the “happiness hormone”. If a coach is to hard on athletes they may rebel or become driven away from the sport. Brendan Jacob (12) states that “a good coach can keep you motivated and dedicated to a sport”.

    Myself, along with many others, believes that a coaches job goes beyond the court, field, or mat. Many athletes do not even realize how much a coach can affect them negatively or positively, and it is the coaches job to try and make their impact as positive as possible. A great coach has the incredible ability to spark a love in a child, keep a kid happy in dark times, and be a mentor to look up to.

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