How to Effectively Speak to Your Football Team

Coaching, leading by example

How do you hold the attention of your youth football team? It is not always the easiest task to do as most kids have creative wandering minds that do not allow for undivided interest. However, with a little practice, you can keep the attention of your kids and effectively present your message of how to play the game of football.

Begin with weekly preparation; construct the important topics of each practice (M-T-W-Th-F) and ask yourself this-

What does my team need to learn and/or what specific message do I need to convey? 

This develops a solid game-plan for you to present to your kids. From here, you can organize your introduction, topic body, and conclusion.

10 Key Speaking Pointers

  1. Have a solid coach’s stance in the center position with your hands to your sides. Do not shuffle your feet or walk and talk as this is a sign of indecisiveness.
  2. Before saying your first words, have a silent moment to scan the eyes of each player. If anyone is not paying attention be sure to let them know.
  3. Use your voice as an instrument to convey feeling. The different tones of your voice can express various emotions, be cognizant of how you sound.
  4. Begin your team presentations with rhetorical questions. These are questions that grabs attention and challenges your football players to think. This is a method to keep your team focused on what is being said. Examples include:
    1. Do you believe we can win?
    2. Are we ready to step up and be leaders?
    3. What if I told you, we have the potential to be a great team?
    4. Is it shocking to think we can go undefeated?
  5. Use metaphors (like or as) as these help to paint a picture for what is being said.
  6. Maintain eye contact with each player.
  7. Clearly state your objectives and how your team will succeed.
  8. Be motivational and show humor. Remember, football is FUN.
  9. Invite your kids to participate, player participation. Call the players up to present with you, role play plays and drills.
  10. Keep in mind, silence is dominating skill, once mastered can prove to be very effective in getting your point across.

Keep your kids engaged in what you, and your coaching staff, have to say with these key concepts. Good luck.

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