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PostPosted: 20 Jan 2011, 15:27 

Posts: 24
So I've been the head coach for my son's basketball team for the last 3 years (he's 7 years old). I'm harder on him than I am anyone else but I'm trying to work on it. Everything he does right, I praise him like crazy but it's everything else that drives me up the wall. I don't really get on him about his playing ability but more so as he's the only one on the team of 7 that questions my drills or anything for that matter.

For instance, the team as a whole weren't moving their feet on defense. They were thinking, "Well, my arm is between him and the basket. That's good enough." So I explained that they needed to position themselves correctly. After again not moving their feet, I had them all play defense with their hands behind their back. My son spouts off, "That's not fair. Why do we have to do that?" On and on, questioning me and after explaining again, I just blow up on him ... sit him down off the court for a few minutes and then bring him back in once he's ready to actually listen.

Another example: If I'm running a drill and everyone has a ball and ask them all to hold onto it as I teach something. Everyone follows my advice except for him. It's like he's testing me and I'm failing miserably!

Please give me some advice on this?

PostPosted: 20 Jan 2011, 16:16 
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Posts: 3139
Coaching your own son must be difficult..... you don't want to be too hard and you don't want to come across as playing favorites.

You need to try and treat him just like everyone else on the team.... not harder or not easier.... IF he percieves you as being harder on him he might just turn you off and thats why he is doing some of those things. Another thing... basketball is basketball, what happens there stays there .... don't take it home with you. IF HE wants to bring something up, then thats fine, otherwise, let it go.. you don't want to ruin your relationship with him over a GAME thats supposed to be FUN. That's your #1 goal, for them to have FUN at this age.

You have to remember that they are 7, their attention span is next to zero..... keep things short and sweet...... When you are introducing a drill, make sure you explain what the drills is for and why you are doing it. We did that with our high school players..... coaching is all about SELLING what you want them to do. It would be nice if they just did it because we as coaches say so.... in practice, we need to explain it. When your son "spouts off" again.... take a deep breath and let it out slowly.... and then explain it to him and the team..... "its not about being fair, the reason I want you to do it this way is because its important that you move your feet to play good defense."

We had a rule for when we as coaches were talking... IF you had a ball, you had to put in on the ground between your feet and make eye contact. We would not continue until everyone did that... we didn't say anything .... we just looked at them. It didn't take long for everyone to buy into that - a very siimple rule.

Remember, it is very important for you to be a good role model, especially with kids this age.... be calm and be a teacher. Step back for a minute if you need to compose yourself. I hope this helps

PostPosted: 21 Jan 2011, 14:57 
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Posts: 1211
Here are a few threads with tips about coaching your own kid:



Jeff Haefner

PostPosted: 21 Jan 2011, 14:59 

Posts: 176

Coaching your kid is all but impossible. It takes a special parent AND special kid to pull it off. As bad as it is for the parent, it is worse for the kid.

Unfortunately, a coach's kid has a lot more scrutinty placed on him -- especially from the other parents. If you kid plays the "good positions" (ie; point guard), plays more minuites, etc. it has nothing to do with how skilled he is, but is only the result of him being your kid. You tend to be harder on him because your expectations are greater. It is also hard to seperate coaching and just having fun shooting around. And since you're his dad, he thinks he can get away with challenging you.

As for me, my own kid had to wait and "proove himself" before I put him in the "good positions." He would get upset because he thought I was yelling at him (I am pretty loud). He would challenge me. So how do you handle it? Here is what I did.

First, I spend a ton of time talking to him about it. How as coach's kid he needs to be a leader out there and set a good example. Second, when he complained I was yelling at him, I let him listen to some of Bobby Knight's comments over the internet -- so he knew what getting yelled at was really like. Third, any incidents of insubordination are handled first by sitting on the side until he is ready to play (like all the kids) and then in private about how that is inappropriate behavior regardless who is the coach. Finally, I make sure there is time to just shoot around with no instruction -- just be father and son. Good luck.

PostPosted: 30 Jan 2011, 21:04 
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Posts: 44
A seven year old will argue with dad if he can get away with it. If you don't have a whistle, then get one. One of my rules is that no players are allowed to argue with the guy that has the whistle. That means coaches and refs.
I also give kids a score from 1 - 5 at the end of every practice based on attendance, effort, teamwork, etc. So at the end of practice, tell them their scores. "Son you got a 3 because you were dribbling the ball while I was talking and you got two time outs. Next practice you need to do blah, blah, blah so you can get a five." You can develp a reward system if you need to like three perfect scores means we stop at the store on the way home to pick a candy bar.

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