If you want a career that can have a positive impact on someone else's lifestyle, attitude and morals, consider becoming a coach. The role is more than teaching a team how to play a sport. Coaching gives you and your team a sense of personal appreciation for each other, and accomplishment. The tasks you perform and the knowledge you have are important, but you'll find that the positive changes you make in many lives is much more rewarding -- and it can even keep you feeling young.
You are an teacher of more than just the sport; you teach values to make a positive impact in the future of your team members. You educate your players in the value of fair play and the laws of the game, and you show them how to avoid discrimination. Players can learn to trust, not just in the game arena, but in life, with a good coach. Through training, you teach the value of setting realistic goals and objectives and enjoying the feeling of accomplishment when those goals are met. You show the importance of being organized and focused. Not every day is a good day, and you show your players how not to lose their cool on a bad day, while recognizing that they made their best effort.
The Extra Mile
As a good coach, you go the extra mile and deserve respect. You listen to each player's goals and challenges and take the time to provide constructive feedback. When training sessions become monotonous for the players and they lose motivation, you think about how to spice up the sessions with new challenges to get the team back on track. Your team relies on you to analyze the physical, mental and technical aspects of each performance and make adjustments to your training methods. Most of all, they admire you as their coach because you create a safe and enjoyable environment for them.
Coaching is a rewarding career that gives you room to grow personally and professionally. Professionally, you can start as an assistant coach and gain experience on the path to becoming a head coach. If you're applying for an entry-level coaching position, you may not need to have a degree, just experience. As a head coach at high schools and colleges, however, you must have a bachelor's degree in the field of coaching, giving you in-depth knowledge of physical education, fitness, nutrition and other areas related to sports. You may need certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation to respond to emergency situations. CPR may also be required for coaching at a camp or for an individual sport such as scuba diving, tennis, or golf. Your reward is not just your professional development, but also the personal growth you derive as your team grows in achievements and closeness.
As a coach, you do more than teach the sport and bring a team to victory. You take on many roles that enrich the life of each member of your team. For instance, drugs and eating disorders can be a temptation to athletes, and you are a guide that can steer your players away from peer pressure. You are a motivator, keeping players focused on the value of their training. When teams play against other teams outside the local community, after the planning and organizing, you may even enjoy a little bit of travel.
2016 Salary Information for Coaches and Scouts
Coaches and scouts earned a median annual salary of $31,450 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, coaches and scouts earned a 25th percentile salary of $20,860, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $49,110, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 276,100 people were employed in the U.S. as coaches and scouts.
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Outlook Handbook: How to Become a Coach or Scout
- Sports Coach UK: Skills and Qualities of a Coach
- Evanston Youth Lacrosse: 10 Skills of Great Coaches - A Guide for Youth Sport Coaches
- Coaches Colleague: Roles, Responsibilities and Characteristics of a Coach
- Center for Coaching and Mentoring: Benefits of Being a Coach
- Argus Leader: Coaches should know CPR, health group says
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Outlook Handbook: Coaches and Scouts
- Career Trend: Coaches and Scouts