Basketball on the Edge – The One Question All Coaches Should Ask Their Athletes by John O’Sullivan

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Coaches, imagine if there was a way to gain insight, understanding, and connection with your athletes by asking a simple question? There is. let me explain how.

A few years back, I coached a talented, yet underperforming sixteen-year-old girl I will call Maddy. She was incredibly inconsistent in her play and often looked very depressed. She was definitely lacking in confidence. Her friends told me she was unsure whether to continue playing or not. After trying multiple ways to help her play the way I believed she was capable of, I called her in for a meeting.

I spent the first 30 minutes of our time together offering my thoughts and suggestions, but as I rambled on and on I could tell she was simply tuning out. Here I was, the highly experienced coach, offering my years of wisdom, and she wasn’t listening.

“Maddy, if you don’t start taking my advice, I can’t really help you. I don’t know what else to say,” I shrugged.

“It’s all good stuff coach, but none of that stuff helps me with my problem,” she replied.

“Really?” I exclaimed. “Then perhaps you better tell me what the problem really is, because I clearly am not helping right now.” I waited for her answer…

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