Skip to main content

12 Tips for First-Time GOTR Coaches from Veterans

  1. Enjoy this opportunity! You will soon see that you really are the one to benefit. It is such a great program to be a part of. Seeing the transformation in the girls is mind-blowing. Enjoy the ride!
  2. Relax and have fun! The girls feed off your energy. Don’t be afraid to be silly.
  3. Read the lesson in advance and go over the parts that are the essence of the lesson first to ensure you have time to complete everything.
  4. It was helpful for me to make an outline of dates with lesson number, lesson leader, and when to send home info to parents.
  5. Encourage the girls to respect coaches from the beginning. Be firm and set standards right off the bat, otherwise the girls will see what they can get away with and rule the meetings.
  6. Have fun and don't push the girls to run as much as making movement fun for them. A lot of times during the course of training, the girls seem to walk more than run, but when the 5K rolls around, they run the entire run with awesome times. I like to think I am investing in young girls’ lives more than making future marathoners out of them. Really push them for self-empowerment. Make sure they know they can accomplish anything they set their mind to.
  7. Memorize a handful of cheers. Not every girl is a star athlete so make sure you praise and encourage the girls that don't run fast or walk.
  8. Make sure you are supervising your girls! Do not have them running on areas of your school property where you cannot see them!
  9. Get to know the girls! Build positive relationships with them by visiting with them and getting to know them helps a TON when it comes to getting them to try new things or getting them to do their best during runs, etc. Everything flows better when it's based on a positive relationship instead of just a person they see (but don't really know) twice a week. Get to know them ALL as weeks go on. All three coaches learned girls’ names quickly, this helped. They also learned each other’s names early on. Take time to talk with each and every girl individually.
  10. Have fun and be real. The girls can tell if you are being real with them and will respond to you much better if they really feel like they can relate to you.
  11. Keep your mind open to ideas from the girls. Let the girls nominate others for awards/ cheers.
  12. Keep coaching. It just gets better each season. Enjoy it. The positive impact you are having on a young girl is immense. It is way beyond what you realize at the moment.