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#AnythingButSoft: Why Establishing Open Communication With Parents Is Important for Coaches

We believe that softball is more than a sport - it makes players #AnythingButSoft on and off the field. This season, we'll be sharing tips and insights from leading coaches, nutritionists, and parents alike and talking about how softball makes athletes #AnythingButSoft.
Communication at any level of sports is key to a team’s success. Coaches and players must communicate effectively both between themselves and with each other. At the youth level, open communication between the coaching staff and parents is an added component to a successful program.
When the season begins Chris MacDonald, who has been coaching in the Medford Youth Girls Softball league in Massachusetts for seven seasons, makes it a point to introduce himself to all parents and provide complete contact information, letting them know that they should reach out at any time regardless of what might be the matter at hand.
Having an open dialogue is an advantage on many levels besides simply coordinating the team roster on a day-by-day basis. It can open up dialogue between parents and coaches that may otherwise never be brought up that really benefits the players.
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It allows parents to feel comfortable in expressing their child’s needs when it comes down to how they may act within the scope of the game or the season. This is paramount for coaches to be able to provide the best experience possible for the children looking to get some enjoyment out of playing the game.

MacDonald recently had one parent, with two daughters playing on the team, come up and express how the girls were completely different individuals. While one had a competitive nature, the other was a bit more carefree.

“That’s good that he said that,” said MacDonald, who has coached girls from age 6 to 12. “I respect it and I know what I have to do to make them each feel a part of the team.” 

All-in-all, the wide open communication lines can keep everyone on the same page, allowing for coaches, players, and parents alike to get the most enjoyment out of the season, without having any added stresses.

From GameChanger and Craig Forde.

Softball, #AnythingButSoft