A coach’s seasonal plan should serve as their blueprint for the year. Planning is the process of assessing a team’s goals and creating a realistic detailed plan of action to meet these goals. Basic steps in the planning process involve developing a roadmap that outlines the tasks the team must accomplish to meet their objectives. As a coach, the goal is to maximize the development your players can get on the ice through skill-building and life skills.
The seasonal plan can be broken down further by creating specific objectives within each goal. From there, these objectives can be divided into monthly segments with progressive goals which will allow for further development of skills already learned earlier in the season.
When setting goals for the season coaches should avoid any benchmarks that are performance-related (winning a certain number of games, scoring X amount of goals, etc.). As a coach, you have no control over these outcomes, the focus is on development and not on specific results. Aim to teach age-appropriate skills and concepts and have your players build on their own through creativity.
The finalized seasonal plan can be distributed to the parent group and players. It will outline the development plan and gives parents the benchmarks of what the team will be working on at certain points of the year. This shows the parent group that you are willing to be held accountable and have their kid’s best interests in mind for the upcoming season.
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The Core Skills and Evaluation charts below provide a blueprint of the proper age-appropriate skills players should learn this season. It helps them learn the foundational techniques for skill-building as they grow older.