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Highlighting the Coach of the Month for December

By The Coaches Site, 12/18/20, 3:45PM EST


Coach of the Month presented by The Coaches Site

This season marks the fourth year of the OMHA Coach of the Month presented by The Coaches Site. We asked for nominations of deserving coaches and after much deliberation, Steve Hurst of the Glancaster Bombers U9 Red team was selected as the Coach of the Month for December.

Here's his story as told by his nomination:

Steve works really hard to teach his players the love of the game. Through drills and games, Steve teaches the players that teamwork is most important and that you play for the name on the front of your jersey not the name on the back. The players are excited for each practice and have learned how to respect and include each other both on and off the ice. Steve tailors his work with each player based on their needs, and gives individual tips to each player to help move them forward. He loves his role so much, that he joined the executive panel for the league to ensure everyone at every level enjoys their experience as a Glancaster Bomber.

Coach Steve grew up in the Stoney Creek Minor Hockey Association, playing AAA before Junior, University and Senior hockey in adulthood. He retired once he began coaching his kid's team and has been with this Bombers team for two seasons.

How do you keep your players excited and engaged during a season like this?

I have three philosophies of coaching. One is to give an honest effort when you’re on the ice. Second is to improve your skillset while you’re out there. The third is to have some fun while you’re doing it. I kind of build everything around that. I do a lot of fundamental and development stuff. With this year, we just started to get into games and everything got shut down in the area. We’re currently on pause right now. For me, it’s all about skill development and fun. If I can check both those boxes during practices sessions then I think we win.

How to you go about instilling teamwork with your team?

I always position this to the kids as we’re not just learning about hockey, we’re learning about life. A lot of these lessons will be things they can carry into everyday life as they get older. Teamwork is a big part of that. You have to make sure everyone’s on board and pulling their weight.

One thing we introduced last year was the Hardhat – it goes to what we consider the hardest working player. It’s not necessarily the most skilled player or the one who scored the most goals. It’s the player who we felt did something that the coaches asked of them that particular game that helped contribute to our success. It could be one of the kids that we’ve been working on in practices on a particular skillset that came to fruition during a game, so we reward that player as a result.

Why is it important to teach those life lessons?

For me it’s important because we’re building the next generation. I’m honest with kids that the percentages of making to the NHL are very slim. They’re achievable, and you can get there but they are very low chances. What we want to do is build human beings and citizens that are going to help contribute to society down the road. The lessons they’re learning are going to help build them as individuals as opposed to hockey players. It’s important for kids to socialize and learn the proper way to win and lose. You’re not going to win everything in life so you have to learn how to deal with adversity and failure.


Please note that all previous submissions are still eligible for upcoming Coach of the Month awards and do not need to be resubmitted.

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The Coaches Site is comprised of individuals who have first hand experience in hockey as players, coaches, managers and parents from minor hockey, to junior hockey, international competition and all the way to the NHL. The Coaches Site offers a platform that supports coaches and a positive competitive culture at rinks around the world.

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