All players in all levels of sport need to be motivated by their coaches. As a coach it is your responsibility to motivate your players during the game and during practice. If you coach youth sports, you not only have to motivate your team but ensure that they are having fun and not focusing entirely on winning.
Assess your team and figure out the type of personality each player has. This will determine your approach. Different people respond to different techniques. Try to set goals as soon as possible. If you coach a much younger team i.e. under 10’s try to focus on having fun and good sportsmanship. If you coach older teams i.e. under 16’s, focus on getting to finals as a team. You have to remember in order for your team to succeed, everyone needs to be focusing on a common goal.
When a coach finds that their team is lacking or not performing at their best, clearly motivation is needed. It is extremely important for a coach to take the time to talk to their players and keep communication open. Take some time during each training session to sit down with your team and talk as a team about what you all think the team needs to improve on or focus on. This doesn’t need to cut into your actual training schedule, you can have this conversation with your players while they train or have a break.
Lastly, it is important to recognise your team’s achievements. Your players will become more confident and will want to continue trying hard when their efforts are recognised by someone in a higher position i.e. their coach.