The Role of the Coach
US Lacrosse is committed to the principles of “Honoring the Game” and works in partnership with Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) to provide tools and resources to the lacrosse community for this purpose. PCA is a national non-profit organization based at Stanford University with a mission to “transform youth sports so sports can transform youth.”
US Lacrosse wants all players to enjoy their experience with the sport of lacrosse and to learn positive character lessons that will help them in every aspect of their lives. Coaches are expected to embody the principles of the Positive Coaching Alliance, including the following:
- A Positive Coach is a positive motivator and refuses to motivate through fear, intimidation, or shame. He positively establishes order and discipline.
- A Positive Coach works to remain positive even through losing streaks. She recognizes that it is often when things go wrong that a coach can have the most positive impact and teach the most important lessons. Regardless of the adversity involved, she refuses to demean herself or her players by resorting to fear, intimidation, or shame. She always treats athletes with respect regardless of how well they perform.
- A Positive Coach coaches for mastery rather than victory, which he sees as a by-product of the pursuit of excellence. He focuses on effort rather than outcome, learning rather than comparison to others.
- A Positive Coach recognizes that mistakes are an important and inevitable part of learning and encourages an environment in which players are willing to risk making a mistake.
- A Positive Coach sets standards of continuous learning and improvement for herself and her players. She encourages and inspires her players, whatever their level of mastery, to strive to get better without threatening them. She is committed to becoming the best coach she can be and continually seeks to improve her effectiveness.
- A Positive Coach “Honors the Game.” He feels an obligation to the sport he coaches. He loves his sport and shares his love and enjoyment with his players. He feels privileged to be able to take part in his sport.
- A Positive Coach respects her opponents, recognizing that a worthy opponent will push her and her team to do their best.
- A Positive Coach understands the important role that officials play and strives to show them respect even when he disagrees with their decisions.
- A Positive Coach values the rich tradition of her sport and works to honor the spirit as well as the letter of its rules.
- A Positive Coach demonstrates personal integrity and would rather lose than win by dishonoring the game. Dishonoring the game is worse than defeat.