Jeff Johnson's 

Quotes of the Week

Jeff Johnson was employee #1 for Nike and is a widely travelled and experienced coach with a wealth of knowledge, advice, and information to share. We are lucky and honored to have him involved with New Hampshire Track and Field and to have him share some of what he's learned from the sport over the years. It certainly exemplifies Jeff's humility and awry sense of humor. 

Quotes by Jeff Johnson from his work in progress: “In Other Words: Things I Think I Said When I Was Trying To Think Of Something To Say.”

June 3, 2024

"If you have an idea and it works out, people think you are a genius. If it doesn't work out, people think you're an idiot. But then they lower their expectations for you, and you have gained the element of surprise."

May 27, 2024

"Ask the stupid question; pursue the stupid answer. See where it takes you." 

May 20, 2024

May 13, 2024

May 6, 2024

April 29, 2024

April 22, 2024

April 15, 2024

April 8, 2024

April 1, 2024

"Value intelligent training above hard training. The object of all training is not great workouts but great results." 

March 25, 2024

"When you have something of critical importance to teach your athletes, it is necessary to repeat it dozens of times. Athletes hear so many things from their coaches, that it is only through repetition that athletes can distinguish the most important from the least important." 

March 18, 2024

"Don't expect athletes to win. Prepare them to win, but expect only that they do their best for themselves and each other."

March 4, 2024

"The athlete who always questions his/her training does you two favors. First, he/she keeps you on your toes - you should be able to explain every element of your training plan. Second, he/she provides you with a teaching opportunity that will inevitably draw in other athletes, involving them more completely in your program. Also, you can be sure from his/her questions that this is one athlete who cares and who has been paying attention."

February 26, 2024

"Running can be, and often is, a quest for an organizing principle of life. Training can be, and often is, a quest for discipline and achievement." 

February 19, 2024

"The coach is most effective when he/she is in the background, in the shade, and the athlete is in the foreground, in the light." 

February 12, 2024

"Respecting people for who they are is the first step in influencing them to become something more."

February 5, 2024

"Expect to succeed. Realistically, you won't always but without that expectation, you will never succeed. You don't stumble upon success, you set out to make it happen. You never know when, or if, your expectations will be realized, so have fun, enjoy the process, do the best you can, be patient, and see how far you can get."

January 29, 2024

"All athletes are great in their dreams. Effort, commitment, self-discipline and perseverance are required to convert dreams to reality but, well, that just reduces the competition."

January 22, 2024

"The ultimate reward of competitive sports is not what you achieve on the field of play. Rather, the ultimate reward is what you become from having committed yourself to the demands of athletic training and competition." 

January 15, 2024

" Human beings are natural runners for whom with a little practice, running is an enjoyable activity. Coaches should establish the joy first, the training second." 

January 8, 2024

" As coaches, it is our responsibility to help our athletes reach their full potential, and it is the athletes' responsibility to us to help make that possible. Athletes have to make a commitment to us, just as we make a commitment to them. That commitment involves consistent hard work, and the discipline to conduct themselves and manage their lives like champions."     

January 1, 2024

"Coaching is the best career I know where you can love what you do, and know that what you do matters in people's lives. Moreover, you witness progress as it happens. You can't ask for better work." 

December 18, 2023

" We tend to get what we expect to get. Plant tomatoes, expect tomatoes; plant excellence, expect excellence. What coaches expect, they create." 

December 11, 2023

Some Rules for Coaches -

(1)   Be a positive role model.

(2)   Be a servant-leader.

(3)   Be organized and detail-oriented.

(4)   Prepare with purpose.

(5)   Recruit. Be a salesman for your sport.

(6)   Have a vision for your program.

(7)   Have a plan but don't be a slave to it.

(8)   Be curious and never stop learning.

(9)   Educate and inspire.

(10) Academics first. Athletics second.

(11) Emphasize improvement and process over winning.

(12) Have a coaching philosophy.

(13) Be enthusiastic.

(14) Encourage, praise, and celebrate every improvement, no matter how small.

(15) Teach self-confidence, self-discipline and self-discovery.

(16) Set attainable goals. When your athletes reach them, set higher attainable goals.

(17) Create a team culture of traditions and high expectations.

(18) Enable excellence.

(19) Show that you care.

(20) Treat every individual athlete fairly, if not always equally.

(21) Be as dedicated to the development of your pluggers as you are to the development of your super-stars.

(22) Treat your athletes as champions before they are.

(23) Hold your athletes to high personal standards.

(24) Err on the side of under-training.

(25) Introduce new training stresses gradually, and include a bit of every stress (speed, distance, plyos, weights, hills, track, roads, etc.) every season of the year.

(26) Deflect credit. Accept blame.

(27) Coach with a light touch. Don't over-coach.

(28) Never risk an athlete's health and well-being in pursuit of team points.

(29) Believe in yourself and trust your instincts.

(30) Don't take yourself too seriously.

(31) Coaching is not about you. The sport and the team belong to the athletes, not to you.

(32) Never forget that participation in competitive sports is supposed to be enjoyable.

(33) Mentor the next generation of coaches.

(34) Reserve time and space for yourself and for your family.

December 4, 2023

"Drive is the fierceness of purpose, the urge to always get the best out of yourself, stubbornness in action. Drive is unforgiving of short cuts. Drive always takes the long way round." 

November 27, 2023

"Indoor track lap racing is like racing in a bathtub, except in a bathtub you can always count on banked turns. If you learn to handle yourself tactically racing indoors, you can handle yourself tactically anywhere." 

November 20, 2023

"At the end of every season, if the athletes performed poorly, look back and ask 'Why?' If the athletes performed well, look back and ask the same question."

November 13, 2023

"It is just as dangerous to hold onto past successes as it is to hold onto past failures. What you have to do is simply forget and move on. Work as if no future success is guaranteed, because it isn't. Work as if what you did last year will in no way help you this year, because it won't."

November 6, 2023

"Sprinters are quick-draw gunslingers. Distance runners are librarians."

October 30, 2023

"The purpose of the coach goes beyond guiding athletes to mastery of their events. The purpose of the coach extends to guiding athletes to mastery of themselves."

October 23, 2023

"While raising the bar of expectation, keep your athletes grounded in enjoying the daily process of training and becoming a team. Don't hang the season on any one competition. Rather, enjoy the process of training and competing together to achieve your best performances in the late season championships."

October 16, 2023

"Life is a privilege. Opportunity is a privilege. Competing is a privilege. The Big Stage is a privilege. Pressure if a privilege. Take it all in. Enjoy the privilege. Then justify it.

October 9, 2023

"In any race, 20% of the field will defeat themselves with nerves, 20% are over-trained, and another 15% are badly trained. 15% will run stupid races, and 10% will be slowed by injury or illness. That leaves, roughly, one out of five runners ready to run solid races. Half of those are not as good as you are, and the other half is no better than you are. So, yes, I like your chances." 

October 2, 2023

"Patience is power. With proper training and time, the novice becomes the champion."

September 25, 2023

"Every highly motivated athlete possesses the toughness and the will to do harm to themselves by overtraining. It is a common mistake of coaches to permit that to happen." 

September 18, 2023

"Over-training is over-stress. Over-stress is a stress level that exceeds the athlete's capacity to adapt and improve. Over-training is training too hard, or too frequently, or with inadequate recoveries, or sometimes all three. An athlete performs below his ability. He feels weak, flat. In extreme cases, he can do permanent damage to his endocrine system. Do not over-train your athletes and do not let them over-train themselves." 

September 11, 2023

"Morale is shared pride, shared confidence, shared effort, shared enthusiasm, shared loyalties and shared success."

September 4, 2023

"It is a mistake to think that girls can't train as hard as boys, once you correct for size, strength and speed.  Athletes are athletes." 

August 28, 2023

"When coaches go wrong, it is rarely because we over-do the workouts; more often, it is because we under-estimate the requisite recoveries." 

August 21, 2023

"Teach your distance runners the aerobic value of a ten mile run, and you will have at least one hour to focus on your sprinters, jumpers, and throwers." 

August 14, 2023

"If you expect your athletes to listen to you, say something worth listening to. If you are babbling, their patience with you will soon expire. Better to say nothing than to feign wisdom." 

August 7, 2023

"If you teach your young athletes only one thing, teach them that discipline and fun can co-exist and that work and play need not be mutually exclusive."

July 31, 2023

"It is the coach's job to serve the needs of the athlete, not the other way round." 

July 24, 2023

"I was just on the treadmill, with NFL Live on ESPN keeping me company.  

"Hosting the show today--which included numerous ESPN heavy hitters —was Victoria Arlen, daughter of Jaqueline Oscroft, 1977 Exeter (NH) HS cross country, Class I Champs, 3rd place team in the New Englands.  Victoria—who hit it out of the park today, coordinating numerous ESPN stars—has an incredible story..  At the age of 10 she suddenly fell ill with 'asthma, pneumonia, fainting spells, ear infections, flu symptoms and more'.  (I am getting this from the jacket of her book, Locked In.)   'Over the course of three months, she lost her ability to speak, eat, walk, and move, and she slipped into a vegetative state.  Victoria became locked inside her own body—able to think clearly and to hear and feel everything—but no one knew.  She could not move or communicate and no one could hear her cry for help…..Her doctors wrote her off as a ‘lost cause’, convinced her survival was uncertain and recovery unlikely.  So Victoria remained a prisoner in her body for nearly four years. 'At age 15, she woke up, but could communicate only through eye blinks.   …'she gradually regained her ability to speak, to eat, and to move her upper body.  But because of damage to her spine, she faced permanent paralysis from the waist down….she began swimming for therapy, and then competitively.  And in 2012, just two years after coming back to life, she won a gold medal at the 2012 London Paralympics Games as well as (setting) multiple world, American and Pan American (paralympic) records….The rest of Victoria’s journey has been a story of surpassing the odds: winning multiple medals, becoming one of the youngest on-air personalities ever hired at ESPN, and finally—after nearly ten years of paralysis—beginning to walk again and even competing on Dancing With the Stars.'

"Thinking about this more, the strength and toughness this young lady showed is beyond my imagination.  To lie, unmoving, for nearly four years, unable to communicate and entirely cut off from any kind of mental stimulation (conversation, reading, writing, TV), presumably with her eyes closed the entire time) yet otherwise being able to hear and understand the “lost cause” hopelessness of her doctors, yet be able to come out of it with her sanity intact, is unimaginable.  Prisoners in solitary confinement begin deteriorating mentally in just a few days.  Then, I think of the hole in her education from age 10 to 15.  No 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th grade.  How does that get fixed, even if she has a brain left after nearly four years of being “locked in” her own mind?  This woman is a giant. 

"Beyond amazing."

Victoria's Victory Foundation

Project Walk Boston

July 17, 2023

"Leaders are those people who inspire others to dream, to set goals, and to work for the realization of those goals"

July 10, 2023

"Each workout that you ask your athletes to perform should have a specific purpose, and you should know what that purpose is. If you can't explain the purpose of a workout, then your athletes should not do it......and you should tell them that. An athlete's question about a workout represents a 'teaching moment' as well as an opportunity for the coach to partner with the athlete as they begin to take ownership of their sport."

July 3, 2023

"People will follow you if you know where you are going, and if where you are going is some place they want to be."

June 26, 2023

"Don't underestimate your kids, and don't short-change them. Almost every kid came out for your sport because they wanted to. It was their idea. They want to make friends and have fun, but they want to be challenged too. They want to improve, and they want to be successful. If you can show them how to do that, they will believe in you, and they will follow you."

June 19, 2023

"Fuel your charges with strength and fitness; ignite that fuel with inspiration. To coach without inspiration is to provide recipes without turning on the burners."

June 12, 2023

"At practice, explain to your athletes how the day's workout will improve them, either over the long term, or in their preparation for their next competition. Expect your athletes to partner with you in their improvement." 

June 5, 2023

"Coaches can't make athletes do anything, but they can teach athletes why they should want to."

May 29, 2023

"It is not enough that your athletes merely improve their performances, you must help them to grow their courage, to grow their confidence, to grow their accountability and sense of team."

May 22, 2023

"As an ideal, competition has nothing to do with quality of performance. It is all about who got the best out of themselves."

May 15, 2023

"Race your athletes only when the race will help them achieve their season goals."

May 8, 2023

"The coach's role is to teach, mentor, and advise, not to encourage a dependence of the athlete upon the coach. An independent athlete will be a more committed student and a more reliable competitor."

May 1, 2023

"Athletes who learn to enjoy the process of training and competing are on the direct path to excellence in every aspect of their lives."

April 24, 2023

"Athletes must see that their hard work is paying off, and nothing demonstrates that better than the coach's acknowledgement and appreciation of every improvement."

April 17, 2023

"It is easier and more natural for one to follow the example of a superior than it is for one to find his own way. In your role as a 'superior'. make sure your example is a good one."

April 10, 2023

"The subtle distinction between teaching and coaching is that teaching tends to be more lesson-oriented while coaching tends to be more people-oriented. The two come together in their intended result: the merging of lessons and people into one."

April 3, 2023

"Balance hard, well-planned training with flexibility and well-considered restraint."

March 27, 2023

"Don't be afraid to make mistakes (of the non-lethal and non-catastrophic kind; lethal and catastrophic mistakes you can and should be afraid of). Mistakes are opportunities to learn."

March 20, 2023

"If you love coaching, you will read, study, question and listen. 

If you love coaching, you will be first to practice and last to leave. 

If you love coaching, you will be there for your athletes whenever they need you.

If you love coaching, you will be successful."

March 13, 2023

"Create an environment of challenge, support, success and celebration."

March 6, 2023

"Before every race, coaches commonly say 'Do your best'. If by that they mean for the athlete to commit to a maximum effort, I think that is bad advice, too casually given. Most races are developmental; only the championship races deserve one's best effort. The athlete needs to pace themselves through the competitive season if they want to reach the championship races eager to test themselves mentally and physically on the big state, and not be over-raced, burned out, and eager for the season to end."

February 27, 2023

"People rise to the level of expectation set for them by their leaders. If they are expected to accept great challenges and to succeed at them, they will rise to that level, too."

February 20, 2023

"It has been said that novice athletes should have 'realistic' expectations for their athletic futures. But who is to say what is realistic for an athlete who has not yet put his toe in the water? Better to have no expectations for the novice athlete beyond showing up, working hard, and having fun. Later, with experience and confidence, an athlete can begin to set goals and frame 'realistic' expectations."

February 13, 2023

"I do not have faith in you. I have belief in you, a belief founded in who I know you to be and what I know you can do."

February 6, 2023

"Don't strive to be happy. Instead strive to make a positive difference in people's lives. If you manage to do that, you will be happy."

January 30, 2023

"For the coach, the potential of every athlete is a sacred trust, and not just their athletic potential."

January 23, 2023

"Everything I know I learned from other people. I can take personal credit only for my ignorance."

January 16, 2023

"To coach athletes with attention, commitment, and caring is to motivate the athletes to respond with their best. Give so much of yourself that they never want to let you down."

January 9, 2023

"Every innovation has resulted from someone pursuing an unaccepted or unexplored idea, and consequently is often counted by criticism and derision. Bill Bowerman's 'hard/easy' training for runners was deemed un-American, a betrayal of the Protestant work ethic. Dick Fosbury's 'flop' high jump was thought unworkable, a nonsensical outgrowth of the antiquated 'scissors' technique. But actual results required a second look."

January 2, 2023

"It's not what coaches know that differentiates their programs, one from another. Rather it is who they are, and it is how they inspire and communicate with their athletes that they differentiate their programs. So coaches should not be afraid to share their knowledge with other coaches, if they want to advance their sport; everything they know, and everything they think they know."

December 26, 2022

"Coach your athletes when they want and need your coaching. The rest of the time, let them think for themselves."

December 19, 2022

"To acquire influence, begin by giving opportunities to others; then, continue by encouraging them, inspiring them, building their self-confidence and celebrating successes."

December 12, 2022

"To calcify an athlete's negative self-image, express low expectations. To liberate the athlete's potential, express high expectations and unlimited optimism."

December 5, 2022

"Success doesn't test you; you have already won. Failure doesn't test you, your competition is completed. It is adversity that tests you, when events seemingly conspire to remove you from the contest altogether. Now your education begins."

November 28, 2022

"Confidence without performance is difficult to acquire and impossible to sustain. Be sure to put your athletes in competetive situations that will build their confidence. Don't let them be overwhelmed and humiliated. The development of their confidence should parallel the development of their capacities."

November 21, 2022

"Indoors, there is a surprising tendency, even among experienced runners, to treat the last lap as they would the last lap outdoors, namely, as if there is the same space and time to overtake and pass. Many victories in indoor lap races can be cheaply earned in the penultimate lap. (This is especially true in the 800 - 1 mile range.)"

November 14, 2022

"Work without expectations results in mediocrity. Expectations without the work yields the same. It is the combination of work and expectations that results in winning performances."

November 7, 2022

"The more your athletes know about their sport - its history, its records, its personalities - and the more they know about their training and opportunities, the more enthusiastic they will likely be. The more enthusiastic they are, the more attentive they will be to their sport's nuances, and the more diligent they will be to their sport's demands. the more attentive and diligent they are, the more successful they will be. Give your athletes knowledge. If you don't have knowledge, get it, however you can."

October 31, 2022

"Kids want to succeed today, they wanted to succeed yesterday, they will want to succeed tomorrow. Kids are hungry for character, purpose and achievement. That's the business coaches are in."

October 24, 2022

"Athletes generally want to succeed. It is the coach's job to convince them that they can succeed."

October 17, 2022

"To win a championship, miracles are seldom required. Athletes need only perform to their normal level of talent and preparedness - boosted somewhat by the competitive atmosphere - while their fellow competitors, intent on heroic efforts, are 'over-trying', usually to disastrous effect."

October 10, 2022

"Individuals and teams with low expectations are seldom disappointed."

October 3, 2022

"Quicker, shorter strides are more energy efficient than slower, longer strides. Coach higher turnover rates - more stride cycles per minute - for athletes who lope or bounce. Higher turnover rates learned at slower training paces, even jogging, will translate to higher turnover rates at racing speeds."

September 26, 2022

"In case of failure or defeat, first find the humor, then build from there."

September 19, 2022

"Muscle tension is an oft-overlooked factor in preparing an athlete to race. To have your runners 'feeling good' on race day, be sure that their last session consists of a few faster-than-race-pace strides or reps. To ensure that their athletes are also properly rested for their race, some coaches will plan their rest day two days before, then have their athletes do some short, but sharp efforts one day before."

September 12, 2022

"Coach as you are inclined to coach, with your own instincts, your personal style, methods and philosophy. You will be more successful by being 100% yourself than by trying to emulate the practices and behaviors of seemingly more successful coaches. Learn from other coaches, but adapt rather than copy. Who is better being you than you?"

September 5, 2022

"Impossibilities surrender in the face of effort, enthusiasm, and perseverance."

August 29, 2022

"In the presence of meticulous preparation, extreme confidence, courage, positive energy, and a powerful will to win, seemingly miraculous performances may occur."

August 22, 2022

"Do not be a task-master. Be an enthusiasm-master. Speak not of discipline, work and sacrifice. Speak instead of excellence, improvement and fun."

August 15, 2022

"Good coaches have a vision of what is possible for their athletes and teams. They share that vision, and communicate what it will take for its realization. Then they raise the vision to the level of shared expectation. Finally, good coaches inspire their athletes to go to work."

August 8, 2022

In the presence of meticulous preparation, extreme confidence, courage, positive energy, and a powerful will to win, seemingly miraculous performances may occur."

July 25, 2022

"You are the sum of every person who has told truth or told lies to you; the sum of every person who has encouraged or disheartened you; the sum of every person who has praised or disparaged you. As the scales tip, so do you become; and as you are to others, so do you weight each of their scales."

August 1, 2022

"The limitations of a team reflect the limitations of a coach's vision."

July 18, 2022

"Desire in an athlete is atavistic, primeval. The athlete either has it, or doesn't. You cannot coach desire. You can only guide it to its ultimate destination."

July 11, 2022

"In training, there is virtue in moderation yet occasional profit in excess. But - and this will frustrate the crazies among us - only in well-planned, carefully controlled, and thoughtfully executed excess."

July 4, 2022

"Don't take anything for granted. Ever. It can all be taken away in an instant. Do what you need to do now. Say your 'thank yous', 'I'm sorrys', and 'I love yous' now."

 June 27, 2022

"The ultimate value of training for, and competing in sports is to prepare our athletes for the ups and downs, the wins and losses, the satisfactions and disappointments of life."

June 20, 2022

Beyond talent and preparation there is luck, and beyond luck there is magic, the role of which in human affairs should never be underestimated."

June 13, 2022

"If you coach every athlete as though they are potential gold medalists, more of them will find gold than you could have imagined."

June 6, 2022

"Coaches who have high expectations for their athletes, coaches who demand commitment, effort, discipline, and individual responsibility, invariably have the highest performing individuals and teams. People thrive when they are challenged."

May 30, 2022

"On the final days before a major event, athletes almost always experience some measure of self-doubt. This is normal. Coaches should counter athlete anxiety with confident messages of readiness, and closely monitor their remaining workouts against over-training."

May 23, 2022

"We train so that we might win more easily. But there is no satisfaction in easy wins. The wins that thrill and satisfy us the most are those claimed on our last jump, or our last throw, or at the finish lean of a come-from-behind last lap. In rising to the challenge we find our greatest joy."

May 16, 2022

"The most difficult task coaches face in preparing athletes for a major competition is relieving the pressure so they can perform to their abilities. If you can focus their minds on the 'execution' of the event (their pre-event preparation, their race plan, the specific challenges and opportunities provided by the competition, the course, etc.) and keep their minds off potential outcomes (winning, losing), you're halfway there."

May 9, 2022

"Treat your athletes as champions, awaken in them a respect for process, a love of training and of being part of a team, then hold them to the highest expectations, and it won't be long before they are hoisting trophies overhead."

May 2, 2022

"If talent is the bus, then enthusiasm is the driver. The most powerful force in human endeavors is enthusiasm. If you instill it, people will follow you anywhere."

April 25, 2022

"When your athletes graduate, they should have learned as many lessons from their coaches as they learned in their classrooms, and their and their coaches' lessons should stay with them longer."

April 18, 2022

"Moderation in training is a principle and a virtue, but don't overdo it. Your athletes should be intimate with effort, and on good terms with discomfort."

April 11, 2022

"If we view competition as a contest against our opponents where, in order for us to succeed, we must impose defeat upon them, then we have created a negative environment. We are relieved if we win (because we, ourselves, have avoided defeat), disappointed if we lose. If, instead, we view competition as a contest with our opponents where, in order to succeed, we - all of us - must marshall our resources to perform at our absolute best, then we have created a positive environment. We - all of us - are uplifted and inspired to our best result independent of 'winning' or 'losing.' The positive environment yields the greatest satisfaction and enjoyment, sparking a love for healthy competition that we can sustain for a lifetime."

April 4, 2022

"Every athlete should be motivated by the belief that they can grow and improve themselves. Demonstrate their growth and improvement to them at every opportunity, as well as your satisfaction in their progress."

March 28, 2022

"Unrelenting sanity is uncalled for. Every so often, a healthy mind needs to pull out all the stops."

March 21, 2022

"Life is short. That is the lesson, evidently, of the unseeded heats of the girls' 3200."

March 14, 2022

"Too much training is far more costly

 than too little. Too much may not be fixable until next season. Too little can be remedied tomorrow."

March 7, 2022

"It's much easier to run efficiently at fast speeds than slow speeds. Fast running irons out your biomechanical wrinkles. Elite, speed-trained runners, even if they are running at a slow, easy pace, are immediately distinguishable from joggers running at the same pace, because speed-training has made their biomechanics so much better. Train your runners to run fast before they pick up bad habits from running too slow. Don't let them plod."

February 28, 2022

"Your athletes are your customers. If you don't deliver on your product or your service, your athletes will shop another sport and be someone else's customers."

February 21, 2022

"Courage is born not from security but from risk, not from living in ease but from surviving adversity."

February 14, 2022

"Know what you are doing, treat everyone fairly, praise the behavior you want repeated, celebrate every accomplishment, and everything else is just tenacity and paperwork."

February 7, 2022

"Ability to concentrate... Belief in yourself...Caring...Celebration... Character...Clarity...Communication... Conditioning... Creativity...Credibility... Culture...Decision Making... Direction... Drive... Duty... Empowerment (of your assistants, of your athletes)... Encouragement... Energy... Enthusiasm... Excellence... Expectations... Fairness... Fundamentals... Improvement... Individuality (of athletes)... Influence... Inspiration... Integrity... Judgement... Leadership... Listening... Love... Maturity... Mentoring... Moderation... Motivation... Opportunity... Organization... Ownership... Participation... Passion... Patience... Perception... Persistence... Perspective... Planning... Praise... Preparation... Pride... Process... Purpose... Quality...Recovery... Repetition... Respect...Restraint... Role Models... Safety... Specificity... Spirit... Sportsmanship... Standards... Success... Support...Teaching...Team... Thinking... Tradition... Trust... Using your time well... Values... Vision... EVERYTHING. EVERYTHING is up to you."

January 31, 2022

"Difficulties are like hot sauce with eggs, to add interest to the normal state of affairs."

January 24, 2022

"Praise reinforces achievement, but encouragement motivates it."

January 17, 2022

"The great difference in success between coaches is not between those who know more than others, but between those who care more than others."

January 10, 2022

"The science of coaching requires knowledge and planning. The art of coaching requires imagination and philosophy."

January 3, 2022

"A coach's greatest joy is that every year brings a new supply of athletes, eager to develop and contribute to their team, each in their own distinct way, some by example, some with leadership, some with ability."

December 27, 2021

"What was impossible yesterday is possible today thanks to people who were impractical, unreasonable or who didn't know any better."

December 20, 2021

"Keep your speeches and pronouncements short lest your knowledge run out before you have finished."

December 13, 2021

"An 'expert' coach, at the very least, should be counted on to have teams of fit and enthusiastic athletes with few or no injuries. Whether such coach has any star athletes is more a matter of genetic fortune."

December 6, 2021

"If you want to run like the Kenyans, you should start by selling your car."

November 29, 2021

"Beliefs are the weight-bearing walls of life."

November 22, 2021

"For athletes, constancy of training is an unequivocal virtue. For coaches, constancy of training, if it means never altering workouts from season to season, or from athlete to athlete, exhibits a shameful lack of effort and insight."

November 15, 2021

"The coach's enthusiasm keeps athletes focused on the next positive step. How often have you seen football coaches greet their players on the sideline, clapping their hands enthusiastically after a missed field goal, a lost fumble, or a drive-killing penalty. It's all showbiz, but it keeps everyone looking forward instead of crying over their misfortune." 

November 8, 2021

"Training is the fuel for the engine of development. But motivation is the spark that ignites the fuel. Without the spark, the fuel is inert in the tank."  

November 1, 2021

"Embarking upon new ventures, your confidence is highest when you know the least about the challenges ahead. With knowledge comes doubt, raising questions you must answer, along with fears that must be ignored for as long as the answers justify your confidence."

October 25, 2021

There are athletes who, with no discernable physical talent but world-class desire, have willed themselves to be great, or at least, exceptionally good. But never the other way round: never world-class talents becoming great with no discernible desire."

October 18, 2021

"Don't worry about what might happen. Don't worry that you aren't up to the task. If it is necessary and important work that someone needs to do, and there isn't anybody else, you do it." 

October 11, 2021

"Coaching is not a job; it's a calling. Coaches are called to improve their athletes physically, emotionally, and psychologically through education and training that will never leave them." 

October 4, 2021

"I tell my slower kids that they are my favorites because I am able to enjoy watching them run for so much longer. They smile, because they know that I mean it." 

September 27, 2021

"Coaching is madness in service to others.

September 20, 2021

"There may be no completely new ideas. But there are always traditional ideas in the drawers and dustbins that can be fractured and reassembled in new, more productive ways. There may be nothing new to see, but there are always new ways to look." 

September 13, 2021

"The main challenge in training elite athletes is that they are already so finely honed that they court disaster in every workout. Their tolerance for coaching error is the thinnest of all your athletes. Communication between coach and athlete on every matter - physical, mental, emotional - that might affect performance is critical. The challenge is to maintain the athlete's fine edge, not exceed it. 'Hard' workouts' take on a whole new meaning." 

September 6, 2021

"To make a decision is an experience of personal empowerment. To live with the consequences of a decision is an experience of personal humility. You will find that, going forward, events mostly proceed without you." 

August 30, 2021

"It is essential that coaches distinguish between low-value exercise and productive training. You only have so much practice time, and there is only so much that you can expect the athlete to do. Determine what you believe are the most important activities for each athlete, and focus your efforts there." 

August 23, 2021

"By daring greatly, you might get chewed up; success may elude you. But your wounds will heal and you'll attack readily next time, and next time again, until success is won." 

August 16, 2021

"To say 'I don't know' is far better than to spout answers that you can't intellectually support. If you have had a conventional education, you will be saying 'I don't know' often, and in so doing will have the opportunity to gain an unconventional education." 

August 9, 2021

"As a coach, I recognize that my athletes, my champions, often stand in for my own athletic dreams, not so much dreams unrealized as dreams unrelinquished. When they win, I feel their joy; when they lose, I feel their sadness."

August 2, 2021

"Athletes may think they can win. But they need a coach to tell them he believes they can win before they are fully prepared to compete. The coach can't be faking it. He must have assessed the field, know that his athlete can win, and communicate his unwavering conviction."

July 26, 2021

"Even when you are no longer an athlete, it is good to live like one."

July 19, 2021

"If you want to coach, learn the sport. If you want to be a good coach, learn to communicate. If you want to be an exceptional coach, learn to listen."

July 12, 2021

"Decisions are not difficult if they are necessary and your values are clear."

July 5, 2021

"Give them love and caring. Ask in return effort and discipline."

June 28, 2021

"The best leaders serve and proudly represent the people who follow them, planning for and facilitating their success."

June 21, 2021

"Everyone has limitations, but few have the motivation and determination to even approach them."

June 14, 2021

" Coaching, at its best, is teaching. Losing, at its best, is learning. Coaches can use a loss as an opportunity for learning much better than they can a win. Why did we win? Who knows? Maybe our opponents were unprepared, or just didn't compete well. Why did we lose? No doubt about that. We weren't good enough to win. Now what can we do about that?"

June 7, 2021

"People's lives tend to be great or small depending upon what they or others expect of them. Expect from athletes their potential greatness." 

May 31, 2021

"Ignorance is a blank page, waiting to be filled. Ignorance, then, is vastly preferable to stupidity, the option of nonsense and foolishness."

May 24, 2021

"Coaches say that champions are born, not made. Training helps, but the necessary elements of courage, toughness, and will were already there long before the coach came along. To develop a champion is either easy or impossible." 

May 17, 2021

"Hope is not blue collar. Hope doesn't go to work for you. Hope is not committed. Hope has no energy or enthusiasm. Hope is not productive. When you need something done, enlist not hope, but a workforce. " 

May 10, 2021

"To be a coach is to provide a youngster with an opportunity to realize his physical and emotional possibilities, to build his self-image, his self-confidence, and to appreciate his potential to adapt, to grow, to be responsible, to be accountable, to rise to the occasion, to assert himself, and to endure. To be a coach is to join with parents, teachers, and spiritual leaders in influencing strong, healthy children to become strong, healthy adults." 

May 3, 2021

"It is not what you do for your athletes that makes you a good coach or makes them good athletes. It is what you teach them to do for themselves. If you make yourself increasingly unnecessary to your athletes - and especially so at competitions - you will have given them their best chance for success. Just as children are raised to be independent of their parents, so should athletes be prepared to be independent of their coaches." 

April 26, 2021

"To have unfulfilled goals is essential to your health and happiness."

April 19, 2021

"Some people believe in themselves as if by divine right. For most people, however, belief in themselves is earned by success at small things building one upon another in increasingly larger successes until the realization dawns that, 'Yes, I can do this.' Coaches have the opportunity to provide young people with that ascension of success, then the responsibility to keep them focused and progressing."

April 12, 2021

"History goes unnoticed as you live it, becoming history only in hindsight. Save those mementos which will recall your history, and they will surround you in old age like children who never aged, all of you forever young and impassioned."

April 5, 2021

"In attempting to assess talent, you can see biomechanics, measure oxygen uptake, time speed. What you cannot account for is heart."

 March 29, 2021

"Humor is a response to suffering. There is a direct correlation between the sarcasm of your athletes and the length of your workouts."

March 22, 2021

"We love our heroes precisely because they extend our horizons. Those men and women who break molds or set records stand as living proof that we need not consent to be ordinary, that we can be exceptional."

March 15, 2021

"Greatness knows what it is doing, and dares to go beyond what it knows. Greatness plans carefully, executes flexibly, and keeps an escape plan in its pocket. Greatness risks failure. Greatness sets new standards. Greatness motivates others through its own passion, trust, love and example. Greatness creates opportunities. Greatness is a super-hero, inspiring others to super-hero status, thereby achieving immortality." 

March 8, 2021

"I was never especially good at anything, but I was having fun, and consequently I stayed with it. Staying with it made the difference. The argument could be made that the better athletes are the ones having the most fun, which is why they are the better athletes." 

March 1, 2021

"The best people are failures because they have accepted every challenge, including those that would defeat them. In their secret hearts, almost every man, no matter how successful, considers his life to be a failure, if not a complete disaster."

February 22, 2021

"Treat people not as you find them, but as you expect them to be. They will respond to your perception of them and become what they can." 

February 15, 2021

"Create enthusiasm among your athletes. Fortify them with encouragement, elevate them with praise, gift them with your best coaching, and their development will be assured." 

February 8, 2021

"You must work for the future you want. If your future is handed to you, or forced upon you, you are not likely to want it. Neither will it be yours." 

February 1, 2021

"For the athletes, the most fun is probably the competitions. For me, the coach, the most fun was practice, preparing to compete. I didn't particularly like the competitions. I dreaded them as one would dread a test that he wasn't fully prepared for. I used to think of that as inadequacy in myself, until I realized that each of us, athlete and coach, was having the most fun in that situation in which he felt he was most in control of the outcome," 

January 18, 2021

"Happiness is the consequence of a life of purposeful effort. Commit yourself to a purpose that you judge to be important, then knock yourself out. That's the key to happiness." 

January 11, 2021

"There is more life in giving than in keeping, and more life still in giving of yourself." 

January 4, 2021

"Your education, your experience, your lessons, stories, and values should be shared so that others might leverage them to their own successes. Our blessings gain immortality when we pass them on."

December 28, 2020

"Coach your athletes the way you, yourself, would have liked to have been coached."

December 21, 2020

"To teach a receptive student that which once enthused and propelled yourself is one of life's greatest happinesses."

December 14, 2020

"A coach is a missionary for the competitive life."

December 7, 2020

"Greatness is the enemy of good if the pursuit of greatness leads to impatience and overtraining. You must, first, put in the time and effort to be good, then progress to getting better before you even think of becoming great."

November 30, 2020

"Coaches teach young people perseverance, patience, discipline, teamwork, and the value of hard work. Coaches prepare the foundations for successful adults. Theirs is serious business."

November 23, 2020

"If you have an athlete who seems to have no focus, my advice is don't worry about it. Certainly do not pressure the athlete, or hold other athletes up as examples. Kids are all different, and they need to come to commitment and focus in their own way and time. Instead, continue to encourage and provide opportunity, and continue to make your sport more satisfying and worth doing."

November 16, 2020

"The real value of effort is found in its enduring effects, not in the moments when a record is broken or a competition won. The real value of effort is in the athletes' victory over themselves and in the motivating effect it might have on others." 

November 9, 2020

"Coaching is the only teaching job outside of trade school where teaching to the test is not only acceptable, but essential."

October 26, 2020

"Teams of people working to achieve a goal have power. Enthusiasm unleashes that power. Enthusiasm marshalls resources, creates strategies, works hard, solves problems, overcomes obstacles, survives setbacks and seizes victory against all odds." 

October 19, 2020

"Coaching is 50% encouragement, 50% praise, 50% celebration, and 100% confidence in the success of your athletes. Add 100% of your effort to make the math work, and you can create your own reality." 

October 12, 2020

"If you are an idealist, if you believe strongly in your personal values, if you want to contribute to building a better world, either join the clergy or coach."

October 5, 2020

"Talent knows limits that courage knows not." 

September 28, 2020

"Coaching is not all about competition and performance. A lot of it is about comedy, and theater, and teaching things unrelated to the immediate task. Coaches need to be curious and to inspire curiosity and learning in their athletes such that sport takes its complementary place in the larger realm of normal life."

September 21, 2020

"Teach, encourage, love, then teach some more. Only then, if ever, criticize."

September 14, 2020

"Unless your athletes believe in themselves, they will not accept challenges and not set meaningful goals. It's not a bad idea, at first, to set a low bar for success. When they achieve that standard, the germ of belief is born, their faith grows that success is worth the price, and they will have the momentum for the next step. They will raise the bar themselves." 

September 7, 2020

"Never give up on a kid. Kids need you to be on their team, just as you need them to be on yours. Find a way."

August 31, 2020

"The purpose of a liberal education is not so much to instruct a mind as to prime it, to prepare it for operation. The purpose of physical training is not so much to strengthen a body as to prepare it for performance."

August 24, 2020

"No matter how humble the task, excellence ennobles it and inspires others to excellences of their own. Eventually excellence changes the world."

August 17, 2020

"Growth is not possible without action, effort, discipline and risk. Even plants send down roots and bend their branches to the light. Nothing grows passively."

August 10, 2020

"Difficulties are merely the potholes on the road to success. The satisfaction of success is measured by the difficulties that were overcome enroute. Difficulties exist to be overcome."

August 3, 2020

"You may be full of good ideas and good intentions, but unless you take action nothing happens and life gets away from you. The world is full of people who meant well, but who never had the courage or the character to act. You never hear anything of them, but they are there."

July 27, 2020

"To dream and then to dedicate yourself to fulfilling that dream is the point of the inner-directed life. It is what makes us human."

July 20, 2020

"The most effective coaches are not necessarily those with the best credentials, but the ones who give the most of themselves."  

July 13, 2020

"Entropy is the natural decay of systems. Every kind of system you have in place requires permanent monitoring, maintenance and repair if it is to remain fully functional."

July 6, 2020

"We cannot create champions. We can only create the opportunities for champions to create themselves."

June 29, 2020

"When something unpleasant needs to be done, sometimes the choice is should you do it, or should you let someone else do it. If you delegate the unpleasant task you will lose the opportunity to grow your experience from having dealt with something that was annoying, difficult, or stressful. You will miss the self-satisfaction of having risen to the challenge. You will lose the self-confidence that would have prepared you for a future task you might be unable to avoid. You will fail in your responsibility and forfeit your right to leadership. So do it yourself."

June 22, 2020

"Find something positive, share something useful, close with something encouraging."

June 15, 2020

"To encourage is to infuse with the courage to try; to encourage is to inspire the patience to develop. Many is the athlete who achieved greatness because a coach he believed in encouraged him."

June 8, 2020

"Unless it is recklessly dangerous to life, do what scares you. If it goes wrong, your pride will recover, your ego will heal. If it goes right, you may alter your life."

June 1, 2020

"What is coaching? It is getting athletes to believe that what today is impossible for them, will one day be possible. That's what coaching is, and that's what coaches do."

May 25, 2020

"To empower a person, you show them what to do, you teach them how to do it, then you enlist them in the doing while you fade stupidly into the background. A person once empowered is a person forever empowered."

May 18, 2020

"Expect your athletes to be as successful off the track as well as on. Expect them to be good learners as well as good sportsmen. Expect them to be humble, respectful, and of good character. Expect them to make their teammates, coaches, parents, school and town proud of them."

May 11, 2020

"A person who values a life of ease and comfort above effort and discomfort discovers, prematurely, the effort and discomfort of frailty and old age."

May 4, 2020

Respect effort. The true value of competitive sport is measured in effort, not in numbers on a watch or tape measure, or medals in a draw.

April 27, 2020

"It is not the situation that is positive or negative; it is your attitude toward it. The situation is neutral; it is just what it is. Be conscious of your attitude, and keep your thoughts positive."

April 20, 2020

"Adversity is the greatest teacher. She demonstrates your courage and your toughness. She shows you what you can endure and come back from."

April 13, 2020

"The reward for a life of comfort and ease is insignificance."

April 6, 2020

"I hang a 'squirrel-proof' bird feeder on a tree, scatter seed on the ground to benefit the squirrels, then watch in wonder as the squirrels prefer to match themselves against the feeder rather than accept the seed freely available on the ground. If squirrels embrace challenge so easily should not we?"

March 30, 2020

Every day challenges us at least twenty times to be better people than we are naturally inclined to be."

March 23, 2020

"The tougher the challenge, the more likely we are to question our abilities, when what we should be doing instead is focusing on doing the very best we can."

March 16, 2020

"Challenge is opportunity. The most meaningful victories in life result from the acceptance of challenge, refusing to flinch, refusing to yield, and persevering to resolution." 

March 9, 2020

"The athlete and the sport meet at the coach. The coach determines whether the athlete's experience was enlightening, enjoyable, fulfilling, worthwhile, and whether the athlete will want to repeat the experience next season and maybe beyond." 

March 2, 2020

"Children who are shielded from the disappointment of losing in sports will never make the effort required to win."

February 24, 2020

"Character reveals itself in patiently submitting to the rigors of training, in enduring the suffering and sacrifices required to improve, and in overcoming the inevitable setbacks and adversity along the way."

February 17, 2020

"Devote your energies toward developing champions, not recruiting them. Seemingly ordinary talents will continually surprise you, and there is greater satisfaction in the developing." 

February 10, 2020

"The more you celebrate your athletes' successes, the more athlete's successes you will have to celebrate." 

February 3, 2020

"Before telling an athlete to do one's best, be sure the athlete knows what to do."

January 27, 2020

"Fiercely believe in your athletes. You can give them no greater gift and no greater competitive advantage." 

January 20, 2020

"When adversity strikes - losing, injuries, terrible weather, whatever - recognize that your attitude to it all is of critical importance. If you can maintain your optimism and enthusiasm through the tough times, your team has its best chance to maintain theirs. Find the positives and broadcast them. That's leadership."

January 13, 2020

"Never doubt that athletes train and compete for their own reasons, not yours; that they work with you, not for you. And that is as it should be."

January 6, 2020

"It s not what the coach knows that matters. It is what the athlete learns and how inspired they are that matters." 

December 30, 2019

"Set standards for excellence, opportunity and fairness, for athlete-ownership, participation, recognition and satisfaction that will make every kid in school want to be a member of your team. If you like your teams large and deep with talent, consider yourself in the customer service business. Give your customers more than they expected."

December 23, 2019

"Never underestimate your athletes, either as athletes or people. And if you do, never give voice to your misgivings. Instead, encourage and praise. You will be pleased at how often they will surprise you. "

December 16, 2019

"When your athletes are doing well, emphasize improvement; don't let them ease up. Keep them focused on their progress. When your athletes are doing poorly, emphasize encouragement; don't let them give up. Keep them passionate and confident."

December 9, 2019

"Create a team environment where excellence is expected. Many kids will be experience that for the first time. Self-discipline, responsibility, accountability are all elements of excellence." 

December 2, 2019

"It is important for a coach to identify what our sport is all about and what it takes to be successful. It's always been my notion that it takes just as much time to train and race half-assed and without discipline as it does to do it right. Spell this out for kids at the outset of each season and get them to commit to doing the job right. Because it is just that little extra effort - that extra concentration and focus - that separates winners from losers. It's such a small thing, really, but it has such huge positive consequences."

November 25, 2019

"Don't despair of an athlete, no matter how untalented he may be, if he is sincerely trying to improve. The striving may not produce the athlete, but it will produce the man." 

November 18, 2019

"Many coaches yell at their athletes during competition, but I've had my own athletes warn me, 'If you ever yelled at us like that.....' I think we need to make the distinction between calling encouragement to the athlete and yelling at the athlete. Also if a coach offers mid-race advice, it should always be something the athlete can actually do, like, 'Move outside' to a runner in danger of being boxed, as opposed to 'Pick up your pace' to a runner who has already exceeded their ability and is just hanging on. If coaches are going to yell into the heart of a race, we need to be offering something positive. When we address our athletes at full volume, we need to choose our words carefully." 

November 11, 2019

"Never ask an athlete to do something he doesn't have the ability or fitness to do. One of the worst things a coach can do is have an athlete 'fail' a workout. The athlete will either start doubting himself, or he'll doubt you as a coach."

November 4, 2019

"Compete fairly and honestly. Adhere to the unwritten laws of sportsmanship and fair play when you lead your athletes into competition. Otherwise, your attitude and behavior may result in a common, but rarely considered athletic injury, namely, an injury to their character, honor, or integrity." 

October 28, 2019

"Athletes inspired to train hard and compete at their best own advantages for life that non-athletes may never have." 

October 21, 2019

"It is important for coaches to regard the future more than the past, to attend to what still needs to be done, more than what has already been achieved." 

October 14, 2019

"What is it that drives people? Success? Wealth? Fame? These are the obvious answers but late in life one looks back and sees that the driving force was always fulfillment: The knowledge that, with your life, you were able to achieve something or contribute something of value."

October 7, 2019

"There is only so much reverence to go around, and when we waste it on celebrities rather than achievers, society and civilization are in peril." 

September 30, 2019

Fallacy #3: You must force athletes to do what they don't want to do.

Coerced athletes don't stay around. Keep training moderate and satisfying. 

September 23, 2019

"Fallacy #2: What doesn't kill them makes them stronger.

Certainly not in the training of athletes. There is an optimal training stimulus and an optimal recovery period that will achieve the maximum improvement for each individual athlete within each training phase, within each stage of the athlete's development."

September 16, 2019

"Fallacy #1: If a particular training plan worked before, someplace else, it will work here now.

Training plans must be flexible to circumstances of place and personnel."

September 9, 2019

"Do not expect your athletes to be exceptional performers. Expect them to be exceptional strivers and exceptional teammates. Expect them to be of exceptional character, courage and accountability. If athletes meet those expectations of exceptionalism, performance will take care of itself."

September 2, 2019

"At the beginning of every season, clarify your expectations for your athletes. Expect enthusiasm, you will get enthusiasm. Expect leadership, you will get leadership. Expect teamwork, you will get teamwork. There will likely be some attrition in the first few weeks, but the athletes who remain will respond to you. Generally people are eager to learn and to better themselves, especially if they are having fun doing it." 

August 26, 2019

"When coaches expect little from their athletes, invariably their athletes live down to those expectations. It is essential for coaches to verbalize high expectations as well as the means by which those high expectations will be achieved."

August 19, 2019

"People rarely ask enough of themselves though they are willing. They require only a leader with an expectation."

August 12, 2019

"As much as young people seek discipline and boundaries, so too do they seek someone who will expect something from them."

August 5, 2019

"Athletes perform up to or down to the expectations of their coaches.  Your expectations establish the direction in which your team will go."

July 29, 2019

"Any athlete who strives for excellence, regardless of talent, is an athlete you want on your team. Ironically, the less the talent of your dedicated striver, often the greater inspiration to others."

July 22, 2019

"Excellence is a learned skill, not a natural one. It is the outgrowth of intense awareness, lofty intention, planned direction, conscious effort, skilled execution, and a consuming attention to detail."

July 15, 2019

"Coaching is not as much about gaining victories as it is about inspiring excellence. But if you inspire excellence, victories are sure to follow."

July 8, 2019

"To be an example is your most forceful influence, so be a good one.  In all matters, strive to talk your talk and walk your walk. Don't be a situational good example."

July 1, 2019

" Your example sets the tone, justifies your leadership and clarifies your expectations. You have to work as hard or harder, and be as attentive to detail as you ask your athletes to be."

June 24, 2019

"Teaching may suggest what should be learned, but example determines what is learned."

June 17, 2019

"Upon arriving for a competition at an unfamiliar track, acquaint your athletes with how they might move about the facility without passing in front of photo-timers, crossing jump runways or aprons, or entering dangerous throwing areas. Athlete awareness of all that is going on around them is not just good manners that insure the orderly conduct of the meet, but also a potentially life-saving safety measure." 

June 10, 2019

"Athletes of meager talent nevertheless share equally with abundantly talented athletes that which is most valuable in sport: the striving, the effort, the adversity, the discomfort, the anxieties, the setbacks. Spare no athlete the length and breadth of your coaching capacity. For every athlete experiences sport the same."   

June 3, 2019

"Our gains in knowledge and experience, the pleasures of the practice field, the thrill of our athletes in competition, our joy in their success, the brotherhood of coaches, the opportunity to influence young lives, these are the enthusiasms of our maturity and the lasting memories of our dotage."

May 27, 2019

"Enthusiasm starts with the coach. If the coach is enthusiastic, the athletes will be enthusiastic, too. If the coach is not enthusiastic, he's in the wrong business. All our knowledge as coaches is useless without infecting our athletes with the enthusiasm to work." 

May 20, 2019

"Coaches have every right to expect and demand effort from their athletes. They came to you. They knew what they were getting into. They understood it would not be all fun and games. Competitive sport is that, too, but the first requirement of sport is effort from all its participants, not just in their preparation for competition, but in the contest itself. Effort is part of it, and some suffering, too."     

May 13, 2019

"Education should result in a freedom from the isms and dogmas of the world, and a passion for learning and truth. If it doesn't, it was not an education. It was brainwashing."   

May 6, 2019

"Discipline elevates a team, uniting its members, bolstering the weak, and instilling pride and confidence in the uniform and each other."  

April 29, 2019

"I find it a simple and useful principle to treat every person I meet as a customer of what I do not know, nor does it matter, but a customer, nonetheless. That doesn't mean I try to sell him something, only that I greet him with respect and try to provide him a valued service." 

April 22, 2019

"To yield to conformity is the province of the meek. To stand tall with confidence in yourself and the rightness of your values is the posture of the courageous. Be an original not a copy."

April 15, 2019

"Confidence is a fragile state, never to be taken for granted in even our most 'solid' athletes. Coaches must constantly attempt to reinforce confidence if their athletes are to maintain a consistently high level of performance."    

April 8, 2019

"In sport, athletes mimic nature's primordial principle: compete. In nature's competitions, however, first prize is frequently life; for the also-rans, often death. In sport, the consequences of competition are not so grim."

April 1, 2019

"All the credit belongs to the athletes. If they have the potential to win and the skill to execute, they likely will win. All we coaches can do is louse them up, and the best coaches among us dedicate themselves to not doing so."

March 25, 2019

"If we view competition as a contest against our opponents where, in order for us to succeed, we must impose defeat upon them, then we have created a negative environment. We are relieved if we win (because we, ourselves, have avoided defeat), disappointed if we lose. If, instead, we view competition as a contest with our opponents where, in order to succeed, we - all of us - must marshall our resources to perform at our absolute best, then we have created a positive environment. We - all of us - are uplifted and inspired to our best result independent of 'winning' or 'losing'. The positive environment yields the greatest satisfaction and enjoyment, sparking a love for competition that we can sustain for a lifetime." 

March 18, 2019

"I think it's essential to say something to every athlete every day - preferably something positive or encouraging - to acknowledge each individual's presence and participation in practice. Athletes need and deserve to be recognized for their efforts. Everyone does." 

March 11, 2019

Coaching Goals, a few ideas:

1. To see every athlete improve over the course of the season;

2. To see every athlete reach his or her potential;

3. To see the team reach its full potential;

4. To make the processes of goal setting, training and competing as instructive and as enjoyable as possible;

5. To stay injury-free;

6. To aid in the development of character and personal values in your students;

7. To create life-long athletes."

March 4, 2019

"There are, above all, two enduring qualities that coaches should impart to their athletes: standards and independence." 

February 25, 2019

"Coaching is about teaching young people to compete and to believe in themselves. It is about giving them an identity - athlete - that they can build on. It is about growing their self-confidence for the next stage of their lives. It is about helping athletes to be the best they can be."  

February 18, 2019

"The way I see it, coaches should strive to make themselves unnecessary; to provide their athletes with the knowledge, confidence, perspective, skills and tools to guide their own training and racing should the need arise, just as other teachers strive to make themselves non-essential to their students' continuing education. The coach should never become a crutch." 

February 11, 2019

"Authority is best earned by competence, best exercised with affection, and best employed to bring out the best in those over whom you have authority."  

February 4, 2019

"As a coach, you should convince your athletes that they are better athletes than they really are. Not a lot better, just a little better. If they believe in you, they will believe the more in themselves, perform beyond their expectations and you will be judged a prophet."                 

January 28, 2019

"Every athlete deserves respect, acceptance, and a listening ear. But every athlete must come to understand that success doesn't come easily, that it must be earned."                                    

January 21, 2019

"Coaches teach young people perseverance, patience, discipline, teamwork, and the value of hard work. Coaches prepare the foundations for successful adults. Their's is serious business."                     

January 14, 2019

"You are not here merely to win. You are here to influence an athlete's lifestyle, to teach your students to be better animals. You are here to teach your students the value and rewards of effort of perseverance, of patience and achievement. You are acquainting your students with their bodies, with their need for physical work and recovery. You are teaching them the rules of health and fitness that will raise the quality of their lives. You will never realize the true satisfaction of coaching if you fail to grasp those truths." 

January 7, 2019

"Teach your athletes to be self-sufficient on days of competition, so that they can prepare themselves without you, warmup without you, compete without you, cooldown and recover without you. Make your athletes own their competitions, and you will find yourself preparing champions."      

December 31, 2018

"Beware of transitions in your training plan, those necessary changes of emphasis: low mileage to high mileage, slow training to fast training, flat running to hill running, grass or trails to track or road, training shoes to racing flats to spikes to bare feet. Potential injuries lurk at transition points. Ease into transitions gradually or avoid them altogether by including a little bit of everything every week. 'Every shoe, every surface, every speed, every week' is a good motto."     

December 24, 2018

I used to think of coaching as achieving success by developing kids. But I have learned that it is the other way around. Coaching is developing kids through achieving success. The goal is the development of young adults: his confidence, her self-respect, his self-reliance, her self-discipline, their sense of the importance of being a good teammate, their acceptance of responsibility and leadership. The means to that goal is to reveal, then demonstrate the path to success. One way or another, in order to develop the emerging adult, the athlete must experience success, however you choose to define it: by growth, by improvement, or by winning.

December 17, 2018

Coaches are full-time teachers, psychologists, disciplinarians, mentors, role models, cheerleaders, recruiters, story-tellers and organizers.They are part-time parents, babysitters, chauffeurs, health-care providers, fund raisers and public relations flacks. Each of us fills some of these roles better than others, and individual athletes have differing views of our effectiveness in each of those roles. So accept the fact that you are differently abled and differently appreciated and just do the best you can.

December 10, 2018

Be they male or female, real competitors are often said to be 'beasts', which is meant as a compliment. But when you refer to 14-year old Sally as a beast, Sally's mother may require further explanation.

December 3, 2018

Coaches of young athletes should aspire to teach a love of effort and competition independent of immediate results. Coaches should aspire to build a habit and cheerful expectation for the daily work that will advance their athletes' goals. Coaches should aspire to teach commitment and persistence as a lifelong strategy for success. They should highlight each 'win' along the way, no matter how small, in terms of a life lesson that will have future application. None of this is easy. It requires of the coach a perspective that extends far beyond the next race.

November 26, 2018

Don't try to be a friend to your athletes. They already have friends. They need someone to teach them, to inspire them, to train them, and to reveal to them the path to success. That's your job.

November 19, 2018

Believe in your athletes. Let them know you believe in them. Good things will result regardless of the results actually achieved.

November 12, 2018

Talk to your athletes. But, unless they ask, talk to them as little as possible about their event. Talk to them about important things.