What Are You Working on Right Now to Make Your Youth Football Team Better?
Have you taken the time to look back on last years season to see where you need to make improvements? You know how the saying goes about doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. If you have, it may make sense to get some input from a trusted and knowledgeable assistant coach or yes even a competitor. Over time many good youth football coaches are willing to help others and yes that even means competitors. While some youth coaches can be petty, my best adversaries over the years have always been well balanced guys who were more than willing to offer opinions when asked. If you donít have either, put your film on Hudl and beg a strong coach to take a look at it.
What needs to change in order for you to meet your mission with the inputs and dynamic you are in? I know some coaches that are changing their entire defensive scheme, the one theyíve used for years simply because it wouldnít accommodate the lack of talent they had, square peg in round hole with horrendous results. Thankfully thatís not us, this year Iím integrating more football speed development and body control development into our practice schedule. We are getting very creative about it, making sure to combine at least 2 football skill or scheme type movements with 1 football speed or body control development movement. We donít want to waste any practice time and are going to kill 2-3 birds with 1 stone with most of our movements this year. We are also developing a more detailed plan of integrating players into our team culture through a football-pre school for new players using some new methods learned from coaches in other sports. We are also tightening up our Defensive Tackle play, looking at better block destruction and play methods.
To make these changes Iíve bought 8 DVDs and 2 books and attended about a dozen sessions at coaches clinics. If you arenít attending coaching clinics, you are really missing out. While not every session is going to be a winner, there are usually at least 1-2 things you can take from each session to apply to your team. Stick around after the sessions and ask questions or exchange e-mail addresses. Iíve done 3 coaches clinics so far this year and plan on attending several more. Not only do you get to hear some pretty good speakers when you go, but you meet and talk with other youth coaches in your same shoes, you never know who you might run into.
Last week at the San Francisco Glazier clinic, the speaker service picked me up at the airport. They stopped to pick up another speaker at a different airline. He was the Receivers Coach for June Jones at Hawaii and SMU. He had been taught the run and shoot by Mouse Davis. Coach was very interested in youth football and had actually coached it. He insisted on helping me improve my receiver play. We got stuck in traffic for about 90 minutes. It just goes to show you, you never know where you might be able to find that next nugget to help your kids play better next year.
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