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No one at any level of baseball should enjoy losing. Of course, that attitude must be within reason for the youngest and non-competitive leagues. However, losing is a part of the competition so coaches must know what to do after losing. Few things are more important than helping kids learn to deal with adversity and the best coaches know how to help teams stay engaged, learn resiliency, and get over disappointments. Following are some ways coaches can do just that and with a printable guide to remind you from time to time and keep you on your toes. Keeping these in mind is especially necessary when teams lose a lot because it is easy for people, coaches, players, and parent, to become negative and cynical under those conditions. Of course, just as important is knowing what not to do like getting angry, singling out individual’s play, and blaming kids for their efforts. It doesn’t hurt to include players’ parents in the post-game meeting so they learn to do the same things after games.
What to do after losing:
- Tell the team you will do better to prepare them in the future. People respect it when you don’t place blame and want to do better too.
- Explain it’s natural to be upset, but they have only lost if they fail to do something about it. Also, tell them that being upset is a sign they care, have pride, and that is better than the alternative of not caring.
- Ratchet up your enthusiasm when people would expect the opposite and tell the team how much you are looking forward to the next practice with them.
- Remind them that this will not be the last time they lose a game in their careers and even use a little humor to ease the pain. A quick joke can get their mind off the loss.
- Tell a story about times you or a famous athlete had to be resilient after a tough game and how teams rallied after losing.
- Tell the team you have something special planned for the next practice and follow through with something different at the beginning of next practice. Be creative. Building anticipation for practice is crucial, especially with losing teams.
What to do after losing – a printable guide
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