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Dabbling or Diving

Take a moment to stop and consider the differences between coaches in a traditional sport/activity (one you see in schools) setting and the coaches who teach things like rodeo, piano, riding dirt bikes, etc. For this matter, let’s call those “side gigs”.

When a student signs up for a traditional sport, they are expected to dive in for that season and typically more right now. They’re expected to show up to practice and/or play games 5-6 nights a week and sometimes on the weekends. They’re expected to practice in the off-season, lift weights, go to clinics and occasionally a random tournament. They’re expected to work with and trust the coach, even if they don’t always see what’s happening in the short term. They’re expected to be part of team and show up on time. They’re expected, at the least, to dive in and be committed to that sport during the season.

Now, let’s talk about your ”side gig” coaches. They often don’t get a “season”. Generally speaking, side gigs consist of lessons that tend to take place on the one day the student isn’t committed to the other sports, activities, or groups they are part of. The coach, who is often equally as qualified, if not more than other coaches, is generally expected to give lessons to an individual student once a week or month or whenever is convenient for the student/parent. This coach not only has less time to work with the student, but it’s also difficult for the student to comprehend because they’re tired, distracted, overwhelmed, unfocused, etc.

Then, since the child is so involved every other day, the student rarely has enough time to implement or practice what they learned during their side gig lessons. So they come back to the next lesson and the coach gets to start back over at the basics not only because the student couldn’t focus, but they also didn’t have time to implement anything they learned.

Your side sport/activity coach or teacher wants to see your child succeed as much, and sometimes even more, than your traditional sport coach. They create lessons plans and study different strategies to help your child improve from one lesson to the next as best they can, but they are often fighting a losing battle.

I hate when I hear of good coaches quitting because, while they’re dedicated to diving into their student’s success, the student is spread so thin, it’s not possible for them to do more than dabble.

If you’re interested in trying something new, by all means try it out. Dabble in it. Schedule a meeting, try out a lesson, go to a clinic. Then decide what you are going to be committed to and dive in! For the sake of all your coaches and yourself, dive in and be able to commit and stay focused!

Now, let’s take it a step further. We have a serious workforce issue in America of people not committing, jumping around from job to job, not being able to focus, etc. Those characteristics don’t just magically appear once an individual hits the workforce. Those are engrained from a young age.

📸 Devon Moore

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