Positive Coaching?

I stumbled upon an article, through researching good leadership and coaching for Martial Arts that talked about Coach Gus Bradley. He is well known in the world of Football for being an upbeat, positive coach who rarely offers negative comments. To me, positive coaching is sort of a redundant term. Coaching is (supposed) to always be a positive thing, even if you are telling a student what they are doing wrong. There are coaches who are famous for their “in your face” coaching style. Mike Ditka was infamous for being a hard coach. His no nonsense approach to his Chicago Bears brought them a Super Bowl Championship and 1 game shy of a completely perfect season. As you watch youth athletes, it is almost always in the whispers that every great team has a demanding coach no matter what the sport. I suppose that we have to ask ourselves what is really important in the long run.

We do know from research across many performance domains that taking this type of positive approach has long-term benefits.~ Trent Petrie

Is winning the goal once you get to the pros? Is the positive coaching method of one coach going to ruin athletes for other coaches? Trent Petrie, director of The Center for Sports Psychology and Performance Excellence at the University of North Texas and he says “We do know from research across many performance domains that taking this type of positive approach has long-term benefits,” Petrie said. “The approach is focused on learning and growth. The ability to make mistakes, but learning from those mistakes. Focusing on long-term goals with positive feedback. All those things that are part of this climate that he’s creating and is one in which athletes can thrive.” So basically, the stress of being chewed out or punishment for not performing is removed from the equation. Is this a good thing?Since Gus Bradley has an NFL head coach record of 12-36, I don’t know if this approach is the best for winning results.

I would say that at a young age, kids need to be coached with a combination of positive feedback about progress they are making and honesty about where they can improve.

Being honest about the mistakes they are making is the part that some athletes and parents don’t want to hear.

There are several ways to describe it. It is often said that you learn everything from a loss and nothing from a win. I want to use Jordan Burroughs as an example. Jordan Burroughs has stated all of the tough coaching and sacrifices he had to endure to get where he is today. Jordan Burroughs is the reigning Olympic Champion Freestyle Wresting Champion at 74 kilos. He is considered, rightfully, to be the best wrestler in the world in any weight class.

I’m curious to hear what other people think about this subject. Obviously Gus Bradley doesn’t have championship success with his strategy, but he is well liked by his players and fellow coaches. What is the goal when coaching though? Some would say coaching youth would emphasize teaching skills like leadership, team work, and good sportsmanship. Others would say that teaching youth athletes should emphasize on getting better and becoming successful. A winning attitude does not come at the price of soft coaches and being friends with your players. That is the general consensus and an educated opinion that I share. Anyone who reads this blog can comment and let me know what your opinion is.

One thought on “Positive Coaching?

  1. It’s a very interesting subject. One thing ive noticed in mma is that positive coaching is almost always used in between rounds even if the fighter is losing. That said, tough coaching and positive coaching both have their places and their should be a fine line between the two. You want to be pushed but not be broken yet you need to be encouraged but not have yes men. Great article jordan!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *