Whether or not they played the game growing up, dedicated Long Island parents tend to spend a lot of time around a lacrosse field. For every parent who wants to be a part of the action, here we present nine youth lacrosse coaching tips.
Youth Lacrosse Coaching Tips
Without an inside knowledge of the game, a parent’s first lacrosse season can be intimidating. Rather than trying to learn all the elements of the game on the run, we suggest an emphasis on fundamentals and teamwork.
Engage other parents
Just because you have taken over the reigns as a youth lacrosse coach does not mean you have to shoulder the burden alone. Enlist as many parents as possible into helping coach the team. It helps to have a rotating list of parents who can attend practices to help with drills or simply cheer on their kids.
Organize regular practices
To improve their stick skills, youth lacrosse players need as much time on the field as possible. By establishing a regular routine of practice time, young players can apply their skills in a team environment. After a season of field practices, you’ll see your team begin to shine.
Start with a warm-up
After driving to the field, players arrive to practice with tight muscles. Like any sport, it’s important to begin with a warm-up. Simple stretches can do the trick. Advanced youth lacrosse coaching tips include the recommendation to incorporate stick skills into your warm-ups.
Stress the fundamentals
Young, impressionable players should be taught the fundamentals of the game like cradling, scooping, catching and throwing. To help development, youth lacrosse coaches can incorporate simple line drills into their practices. In groups, players can improve fundamentals by scooping ground balls or passing to each other.
Emphasize teaching over winning
Everyone like to win, but winning isn’t everything at a young age. In games as in practice, emphasize teachable moments rather than worrying about the scoreboard. An investment in improving young players’ skills now is worth more than a win.
Provide positive feedback
Young players thrive on positive feedback. Youth lacrosse coaches can build the confidence of their kids by becoming their players’ greatest advocate. We suggest routinely sitting down with individual players to discuss what they have done right and how they can improve.
Let the kids run
Don’t kid yourself that your players came to practice for the line drills. As often as possible, let the kids do what they want to do: play lacrosse. As a part of our youth lacrosse coaching tips, we suggest a full-field scrimmage every practice, if possible. This fun part of practice is also a great warm-up for games.
Don’t overwork the kids
Since lacrosse is a warm weather sport, youth lacrosse coaches must be wary of overworking and overheating their kids. Lacrosse should be fun, not work. Learn the limits of your players to avoid burning them out.
To win a game of lacrosse it takes 10 players not just one. At the youth level, coaches should emphasize teamwork above all else. If you establish attack, midfield and defense lines that frequently play together, your team can form a cohesive unit that will win games, too.Last modified: September 4, 2022