Using Football to Teach Teens Life Lessons

football to teach teens life lessonsCoaching Football is my passion! In my heart, coaching football is more religion than sport. Communities rally around high school football teams like they are armies going into battle! So I thought I would share my experience from the sport by relating some life lessons I learned from playing and coaching the game. I also use my coaching approach in working with my staff and youth as the Coordinator at the Kearns After School program. We call the program FOCUS!

Some of the “football life lessons” I share with the youth, and that apply to every day life are as follows:

If you play football, you are going to get hurt. It might not be a career ending injury, but with football comes pain. The same goes with life. It doesn’t matter who you are, you are going to have pain in your life. It might be a failed relationship, a lost job, or a lost loved one, but there will be pain.

The thing you have to remember is that most of these pains are not “career ending pains”. You have to move past these pains and keep moving forward. Learn from them and move on. Remember, it is not how many times you get knocked down, but how many times you get back up!

There is no “I” in team

Football is also a great way to teach youth teamwork. In football, success does not happen if everyone does not do their job. If the center doesn’t get the ball to the quarterback, he can’t get it to the running backs to make the play. If the line doesn’t block, the quarterback will get sacked. It is the same with life; you can’t reach success doing it alone. You need the support and expertise of others if your journey through life is going to be succesful. I tell my staff and students to seek out relationships with others rather than shunning them. You will be able to reach much greater heights by standing on someone’s shoulders!

coaches offer advice in football and lifeListening to Your Coach is important

Even the best athletes or employees need coaches. The same goes with life. A ‘life coach” doesn’t have to be a professional or have a degree, (although it wouldn’t hurt!) they can just be someone who is interested in seeing you succeed. A person looking at you from the outside can see a lot of areas that need improvement that you might not see.

How else can you explain how a coach, who is obviously not as physically able as the athlete, helps to improve their elite performance? Coaches provide feedback on areas that you aren’t aware need improvment. Seek out a coach, supervisor or mentor and watch your success soar!

You have to give it your all

I also use football to teach youth to give it their all. In the game, you have to go out there every play and give 100% every single time. I tell the kids in the program you should be doing the same with school and life. You’ve got to bring your “A” game or don’t come at all! You get one chance at life, so why not make that chance count? If you wake up in the morning and go full speed, at the end of the day you will be able to feel like the day was a success. This doesn’t only apply to work, it applies to every area. If you are spending time with your love ones, or working with youth, be present listen and most of all be patient. Don’t have your nose buried in your Blackberry; Give them your 100%! If you do your best at everything you attempt, no one can ask for more. Remember, it isn’t the things we do that we regret the most, it is the things we did not do.

There you go, go out there and attack life! I will leave you the same way we started, with a great quote from one of the greatest football coaches ever.

Some of us will do our jobs well and some will not, be we will be judged by only one thing: the result. “Vince Lombardi”

About deevainuku

I have been working with Youth services for 5yrs now, im currently an After School program site coordinator at Kearns Jr. high school. On my spare time you'll catch me always spending time with my family.
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