A Baker’s Dozen: 13 Things That A Gymnast Needs From Her Coach



  1. She needs you to be happy to see her.   Nothing starts a workout better than a coach who enthusiastically greets their athletes.
  2. She needs you to show her she is more important than her performance. That means being kind to and speaking to her after a meet no matter the outcome.
  3. She needs you to be present during practice. Not on your phone checking Facebook. Not chatting with another coach. And not watching what is going on with another group of kids. She needs to know that she has your attention.
  4. She needs you to give her corrections. Yes, even if it is the 10th time you have given her the correction. If she doesn’t understand or is not able to incorporate the correction it is your job as the coach to find another way to explain it, teach it, drill it or reevaluate if she is ready for the skill you are teaching.
  5. She needs you to point out what she is doing right. Remember the target magic ratio of 5 good comments to every correction.
  6. She needs you to inject fun into training. The number one reason kids quit sports: It’s no longer fun. You have to find ways to insert fun into the process.
  7. She needs to know you like her. As mentioned fun is the number one reason kids quit sports, and the close second: my coach doesn’t like me.
  8. She needs you to believe her. When she says she is injured, believe her. If you make clear that you trust your athletes word, and that you take that trust seriously, they will think twice before lying.
  9. She needs you to believe in her. You need to believe in her ability to learn, to stick through hard things and to put forth effort.
  10. She needs you to set high expectations. Coaches who set high expectation have athletes who reach for those expectations.
  11. She needs you to discipline her. With love and kindness, but she needs to know what the rules are and needs to know what the consequences are for breaking them.
  12. She needs you to be trustworthy. If you say you are going to spot her, spot her. She needs to know that she can rely on your word.
  13. She needs you to remember you are the adult and she is the kid. You are not equals. You hold more power over her. So, therefore, you hold more responsibility to her.