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Coaching Kids? Use These 3 Tips to Connect With Them Better

By Stack MVP, 08/28/19, 2:15PM CDT

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There are many other skills that go into being a great youth coach. However, these three points are some of the most overlooked. 

Connecting with kids can be tough. Especially when it's been decades since you've been one. If you work with youth athletes in any role, understanding how to communicate effectively with the kids you're entrusted with is crucial to their development.

Kids are like chaos. They can be happy one second, then crying another. Because they are still developing, children's behaviors can seem sporadic or wavering with each interaction. This changes as they continue to develop and grow, creating more solid habits over time. Some psychologists have explained that behaviors are learned through BF Skinner's "Operant Conditioning"model, where behaviors are solidified based on the feedback one gets from them. This is important to think about when coaching kids, for as you try to connect with them, you ultimately are creating a feedback loop for whichever behaviors they are showing.