Last night I had my third volleyball practice and second practice as solo coach. After Sunday's practice I felt pretty good about my coaching abilities and spent a lot of time researching drills and writing out a great practice for Tuesday night.
Tuesday was anything but successful. On Monday I found out one of my players was moved up a team. On Tuesday I found out one of my players, probably my best player, decided that this team wasn't going to be challenging enough so she wasn't going to play (decided that after coming to just one practice). When I showed up to practice, the other girls said another player was moved up. However our club director said that was not true. So I guess we'll wait and see on that one.
We started practice with some peppering so the girls could get warmed up and moved on to what I thought would be very simple partner passing drills, but mixed up a bit from our first two practices.
The first drill was an Active Passing drill. Half of them just didn't understand what I was asking, so we demonstrated and the light bulb clicked. But instead of running to the other side and keeping control, they just moseyed over and would let the ball drop.
The third drill I asked is the most simple of the drills. A simple pass back and forth. Once you've completed that for a minute, back up and put more space between you and your partner then do the same thing setting. Girls just started peppering or setting when they should be passing, passing when they should be setting. It was just excuse after excuse.
The last passing drill I wanted to do was the Pass & Go. A beginner drill that anyone should be able to do successfully. For whatever reason, everyone fought me on this, saying they couldn't shuffle and pass the ball. It was my last drill and I just gave up. They just continued to do what they wanted to do.
I came in to practice with low self esteem after feeling like the player who isn't playing club because it isn't challenging enough, meant that I wasn't a good enough coach and wouldn't be able to challenge her.
This is my first year coaching, and everyone has to start somewhere, but maybe 15/16 year old girls wasn't the right choice. The lack of focus and respect for a coach is somewhat surprising. I'm twice these girls ages and they question everything I say and every drill I ask them to do.
Our next practice I'll have my co-coach back and she can take control again, but I'm going to have to grow some balls if I'm going to keep these girls in line and make a successful team out of them.
We finished practice sharing the court so we did some hitting lines and scrimmaged the other team. In a game setting these girls have the skills, they just don't understand that we need to constantly work on improving our most basic skills in order to be a successful team.