Post #53– 9/7/21 – Part II – Mutual Respect series – Hockey Players
In This Post…
- Part II – Mutual Respect Series – Hockey Players |
Today we bring you the 2nd-part of our 3-part series on mutual respect within women’s hockey. We’re taking a look at three key participant groups – Youth hockey Parents, Players, and Club / High School coaches. We’ll identify some situations that commonly occur and ways in which we can show a bit more mutual respect to those we deal with throughout the hockey season. Enjoy!
- Treat your teammates well… This is an issue that is rampant in the sport (as well as society) and has no place at any level in hockey–Bullying someone. Hockey has a code, an unwritten rule that teammates look out for one another-no matter what. You stand up and support each other with respect. Now, you don’t have to like everyone on your team, but you do have to respect everyone as your teammate and how they want to be treated. Great teammates are always building people up – not tearing them down. Bullying is dangerous stuff. It rips apart teams and lives. It messes with people’s mental health, no one wants to mess with that. There’s nothing more important than you’re well being or preserving someone else’s. So… Do keep the conversations as positive as you can with teammates. Every conversation isn’t always going to be positive – but it’s how you frame your words that will make all the difference in the world. Asking someone is always a bit better than telling (or yelling) at someone. Celebrate the great plays or near misses with words of encouragement. And in general, be nice to one another.
- Be a good follower… There’s value in being a good follower. It sounds easy, but sometimes all it takes is just following directions and doing what is asked of your coaches or captains – that’s it. We mentioned last week how parents can commiserate and complain in groups–players can be the same way. That won’t get you very far up the hockey ladder. One definite way to show respect to your coaches and the players in leadership positions, like captains, is following their direction and doing what is asked. Being a good follower is a great leadership quality in fact. Be easy to deal with… meaning don’t always go against what is being asked – don’t be the player who always complains. Going ‘rogue’ and on your own path is never a good thing within a team sport.
- Be good ambassadors for your team/program… Being part of a hockey program is really fun and special. But it also comes with an important responsibility–to uphold the values and expectations set by your coaching staff and or school/club association for which you play for. Respect who you play for and where you play. There were probably many people before you who laid the groundwork for your culture and how things get done. Here are a few ways to uphold that tradition. Please & Thank You’s – If anyone offers you help – the phrase ‘please and thank you’ go a long way. Use them early and often. They will put you and the program in a great light. Be ‘Present’ – Your team got asked to volunteer at the local food shelter; stay engaged, don’t make it seem like this is the last place you’d rather be. Show some level of enjoyment. The group you are supporting will have a great report back to your coaches. If you’re playing college hockey, conduct yourselves well across campus, in public, and online – You can’t hide from being a college hockey player, people on campus and off, know who you are. Each interaction you have impacts the reputation of your program. Positively interact with other departments around campus, especially those within the athletic department. Out to dinner with teammates after practice? Be extra careful what you say at the table and be nice to your servers and waitstaff. Who knows, you or your team photo might go up on the wall there! Keep it clean online with social media posts. Be funny, engaging, creative and above all – POSITIVE!
Until Next Time…
Grant Kimball is founder and contributing writer at Women’s College Hockey.org and beginning his 3rd season as an Assistant Coach with the Yale University women’s hockey program. Grant has developed an experienced perspective in the world of women’s ice hockey, having coached and recruited players from across the globe during his 25+ year amatuer and NCAA coaching career. He has coached at 6 NCAA DIII and DI programs in the NCHA (D3), the CHA, WCHA, Hockey East, ECAC, and the Ivy League (DI). Beyond coaching, Grant served as a site representative for the 2019 NCAA quarterfinal of the D-I NCAA Tournament. He also currently serves as an Officer with the American Hockey Coaches Association as Vice President of Membership and sits on the AHCA’s Women’s Hockey Executive Committee.