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When to hire a private coach for your kids

Does your kid need a private coach?

As a parent, you make a number of important decisions regarding your children’s health and happiness.
Maximize your child's sports potential
Boy hitting baseball

When it comes to youth sports, it can be a challenge just to get your kids to practice on time, never mind ensure that they are enjoying their sport to the fullest.

Contributed by Jordan Fliegel, CEO of CoachUp

Enlisting a private coach is one way to help make sure your child continues to love their sport as they advance in skill and team level. While private coaching is on the rise in the U.S., it’s not always entirely clear if your child needs a private coach or when you should hire one. Unfortunately, there isn’t an exact age at which you should hire a coach to help your child, but there are several behavioral signs that will let you know when, and if, the time is right.

Here are a few signs your child might be ready for a private coach.

Your child has the jitters

Pre-game butterflies or nerves before the first practices of the season are normal, but getting anxious before every practice is not healthy. If your child is showing constant anxiety around performance time, this is a potential sign that your child might benefit from some extra coaching time with a private coach. A private coach can address these feelings by helping them strengthen their skills and build their confidence.

Your child is angry or frustrated

At this point, the activity that was meant to enhance your child’s happiness is now doing the reverse. Do your best to speak with your child about the source of their anger. If this doesn't work, consider introducing a private coach to your child. Your child might feel more comfortable airing their frustrations or asking questions with a third person that isn’t a family member.

Your child says coach has favorites

When your child claims the coach is playing favorites and specifically names players, this could be a sign that your child is noticing a skill discrepancy between his/ her skills and the skills of another child. Your child has come to resent another player’s success on their own team, which is damaging to the team’s dynamic and future success. Enlisting a private coach to help your child elevate their skills will bring self-satisfaction back on up and keep them a positive, contributing player to their team.

Your child’s vocabulary is changing

When “I wish I could” becomes a phrase frequently expressed by your child and you no longer hear “look what I can do,” it’s time to think about your child’s longer term athletic future. A younger athlete doesn’t necessarily have the knowledge to know to ask for a private coach or know that private coaching is an option. This could be the closest that you will get to a sign or a request for one-on-one coaching from your child.

Your child asks for help

If your child asks you for help, consider the request and be proud that your child is taking the initiative to step up their game. Keep in mind that even if you were an athlete or coach, your child may need help beyond your skill level. It is also important to remember that sport regulations, sporting techniques and athletic recruiting processes are always revolving and changing. A private coach stays on top of these changes in their area of expertise and brings value to your child’s athletic career in this capacity.

Don’t get stressed if your child is starting to exhibit these behaviors — know that there are a number of ways to get your child back on track to loving their sport. A private coach is an option and just might be the perfect solution for your family. Who knows, in bringing back the happiness of sport to your child, you could be opening the doors to a future athletic career at the high school or even college level.

About the author:

CoachUp is a service that connects athletes with private coaches, believing that private coaching is the secret to reaching the next level in sports and life. The CoachUp mission is to help change the trajectory of kids' lives through sports. Steering the helm at CoachUp is CEO and founder, Jordan Fliegel, a young entrepreneur whose passion for sports goes beyond his business. Jordan firmly believes his life was changed when his father enlisted the help of a private coach to step up his basketball game as a teenager. Fliegel’s experience with private coaching led to a successful academic and basketball career at the college and professional level. He returned to Boston to start CoachUp and pay it forward by coaching youth basketball players.

More about kids' sports

Youth sports: Good for their muscles and their brains
How to prevent common childhood sports injuries
The fall of youth sports

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