The basis for having an excelling basketball team is to have a coaching philosophy which exemplifies the integrity of an honorable coach. A coach who teaches his or her team from a foundation of personal integrity already has the basis for an excellent coaching philosophy. When developing your coaching philosophy you may find that it takes some time and thought because this is a process that matures along with your own experiences in life.

There are some coaches who believe that their priorities should align themselves with the great drive to win. In reality, the responsibility of a coach is to manifest the best traits in their players and foster an environment where the athlete becomes a strong individual with high self-esteem and a desire to succeed in all aspects of life both on and off court. The priority of a great coach then becomes one who aligns himself with the principles of excellence through high morals and a strong work ethic. The ubiquitous win becomes not the goal but the realized outcome when a coach has a coaching philosophy that allows for a well rounded athlete. If your athletes do not win games they will have the substance from your philosophy to fall back on and rebuild to become winners.

As a coach with a coaching philosophy that is grounded in teaching your athletes the principles and tenets of excellent morals and the value of a good education you will be doing your job as a mentor and a professional. A coaching philosophy which incorporates the ideals of a winning team along with the principles of being a good person is the opportunity every coach has to affect society in a positive way. The strength ones players will receive from a sound coaching philosophy that teaches the mind/body connection and also encourages intellectualism to go hand in hand with the athleticism built on court will create the strong moral fiber that produces the future caretakers of our world.

Coaches must ask themselves why they are coaching and to what purpose are they involving themselves in the community and the lives of others. When a coach honestly answers these questions it sets in motion a sense of purpose and understanding. This will assist in making sure that the focus remains team unification and not individual gain. There are millions of teams in the world and only a few will win championships and tournaments. Most athletes who participate in basketball do it for the love of the game. A coach must keep this in mind because most players will not reach the fame of
Michael Jordan or the skill level of Kobe Bryant.

Coaches also must ask themselves what it is they will gain from spending hours with their athletes on the court with the only recognition being the blood, sweat, and tears of each player. What does this mean? What will you as a coach produce? This is where your coaching philosophy will make a difference during the rigorous daily schedule.

Here are a few steps to take to begin developing your coaching philosophy:

  1. Decide what your personal coaching goals will be and write them down. Your goals may differ from what you want to teach your athletes as a mentor. Write more than one list if you need to separate your personal needs from that of the team. See how they overlap and figure out how to integrate.
  2. What do you want your players to gain from their time with you and how do you plan to teach it to them on court.
  3. What expectations do you have for your team and how do plan to apply your mentorship to the daily practices to encourage the realization of these goals?
  4. Figure out what skills you need to develop in your team in order to realize your goals.
  5. Review the coaching philosophy’s of prominent coaches in the history of basketball and compare and contrast the things that you believe will enhance your own teachings.

Picture credit: dandelucaCreative Commons Attribution

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