Watching Jess coach basketball this weekend was great. The coach couldn’t make it Saturday so she was promoted to the top dog this week. During the season she plans on being the assistant coach.
Growing up I worked for the Montgomery County Department of Recreation. Not only did I work in the office where we organized all the teams, the gear, the payment and coaches for all the elementary and Jr. high school sports programs in Montgomery Country, I also coached. It was a blast.
Montgomery County is in Maryland. I believe that the MCDR is the largest one of its kind next to a program similar in California. It is actually quite impressive. They offer every elementary school and sometimes the Jr. High schools, depending on the season, after school sports programs. Anything from field hockey, flag football, basketball, soccer and softball. The majority of coaches were and I assume still are High school kids like myself.
I made minimum wage. I drove around in a beat up 1971 convertable Mustang that was filled with sports equipment and tshirts from each program and showed up to coach. I got to motivate the kids, teach them a sport and have a good time all at once.
Watching Jessica coach this weekend reminded me of how good it felt to coach. I know she is loving it regardless of the many frustrations of trying to teach. She is patient and enthusiastic which is the best you can hope for.
Go Jes! I coached basketball for 5th and 6th graders when I was in high school and it was one of the most rewarding things I ever did. Not only that, it taught me one of my most valuable life lessons.
We coached (my friend and I) the first year and really built the team. We had rules that we stuck to that I’m very proud of, such as everyone plays 2 quarters at least in total playing time. At such a young age, I think playing and learning the game are so much more important than victory. But the thing is, after a season of this, we had a lot of depth on the benches — because kids who know they will see playing time were motivated to get better.
The second year, we went to teh championship and this is where I learned a humbling lesson that I think about almost every day. We were getting abolutely clobbered, and I said something negative that one of the players overheard. I remember the look on his face, and thinking how disappointed I was in myself for allowing myself to slip into pettiness in front of people who expected and deserved more. I’ll never forget that, and I try to apply that lesson every day.