Coaches have more influence over the enjoyment of participants than any other person in the game. This is particularly so for participants at the start of the journey; young boys and girls.
Coaches have the unique opportunity and responsibility to nurture children’s psychological growth and development. Football is a way for children to develop health and well-being, a positive self-image, sporting skills and life skills, such as socialisation and group behaviour. The same is true throughout the lifelong participation pathway. At every age group, a coach who provides a positive environment will have happy players.
In 2013, FFA conducted a research project with over 8,300 football participants to gain a better understanding of how to improve each player’s experience. The research showed the major factor in getting participants more likely to play football was by improving the standard and availability of coaches:
- Coaching was the number 1 influence on a player’s experience.
- Improving the quality of coaches was the number 1 suggestion by players for improving their experience.
- Coaching was also the number 1 factor to bring lapsed players back into the game & poor quality coaching is the number one reason why kids are leaving the sport.