As another sports season wraps up, we’d like to take a minute to marvel at the wonder that is the volunteer youth hockey coach.

By the time parents finish the train-wreck that is dressing and fully equipping their kids for every practice and game each week, they are pretty excited to send their player(s) out on the ice.  But the coaches? They feed, dress and prep their own kid(s) and then spend the next hour or two with ten to fourteen more!

Once the players finally arrive at the rink (late, probably—we’re so sorry, they really tried), the kids truly enjoy the actual time spent on the ice.

Bless you.

You teach. You encourage. You correct.

And you do it all for free.

Correction: even less than free, because coaches do it at great cost to themselves.

  • You spend your own time making plans, drawing plays, and filling out paperwork, completing coaching certification courses.
  • You spend your own sanity positioning players, settling teammate squabbles, and ignoring commentary from parents.
  • Youth sports couldn’t happen without volunteer coaches and we are just so grateful for all you do.

Even if a player never scores a goal, never earns MVP, never learns to not go offside, they’re still better for having spent a season under your guidance.

One day you will be old and grey as you reflect on your years leading.  There will be games you remember and others you won’t.  There will be faces that stand out while others jar no memory.  There may be so many you stood before that there’s no way to remember them all but know this…

They will remember you.  They will remember how you treated them, how you inspired them, how you helped them and the difference you made for them.

So, thank you for volunteering.

Thank you for showing up.

Thank you for teaching.

Thank you for coaching.

Thank YOU!