Jim Downs, VP of Operations for the Hockomock Area YMCA (MA), describes one of the best coaches he’s ever seen in a conversation with Even Field Founder and Executive Director Chuck Wilson. He explains the importance of positive reinforcement and getting every player involved and engaged, working to improve their skills. Downs discusses the value of having patience as a youth coach and tells a story of how that patience can make the difference in a young athlete’s performance. The two also talked about how winning takes care of itself when young athletes are having fun and are focusing on developing skills and playing sports the “right way”. It’s an approach that leads to more confident play on the field. Downs also spoke about learning how to teach young athletes, adding that teaching sports to kids isn’t for everyone.

This conversation took place at the New England Patriots Alumni Club “Football For You” Clinic held in Foxboro (MA) June 26, 2014.

Michael Wilson