“I don’t know how you do it!?”
I heard it again recently. I wrote previously that the “why we do it” comes before the “how.” We love what we do. We feel extremely blessed to do it and to do it with and for the families involved with UnFettered Athletics. Our mission of changing the world is being fulfilled through the youth we coach and their families.
What we do is truly unique. Although our results are beyond us and many of the people who inquire how we do it work just as hard or harder than us, there are some tangible things we do that contribute to our success. When I think of how we do it and think of what makes us unique, I reflect on how we started, where we’ve come from, how we got here, and where we are going. Below is some insight into the tangible side of how we do it.
Firstly, we stay humble. We never sought to coach hundreds of kids or run our own league. We regularly evaluate what we're doing and how, as well as how we can improve and what will be our next step. We seek guidance in our spiritual life, from family and close friends, and from the families involved. We listen and evaluate what we should do and how we might execute.
While planning, we measure everything against our mission and values. We are not here to coach sports. We are not here to build the next generation of athletes.Too often in youth sports kids are being pushed to be a super athlete. They are being pushed to specialize, to join select or travel teams, to win a game, tournament, or trophy. Adults, who likely have the best intentions, are living through the child's elementary athletic career, or they think it will translate to a high level of athletic competition such as Division I college sports or even professional sports. Our focus is far beyond youth sports, high school sports, or even collegiate or career sports. What we teach on the field needs to translate to real life and add value for not only our Hustlers, but those persons they will encounter.
We also focus on where we came from and how it all got started. Families continued to follow, sign up for our team, and refer others, season after season, and year after year because of our coaching. A number of coaches believe they're building the next great athlete of the future. They treat a recreational game as a National Championship. On the other side of things, parents with little experience get thrusted into coaching a sport they no little about because no one else stepped up to help. We take things seriously, but want the kids to have fun. We want kids to learn the basics and the fundamentals. What we teach needs to be a foundation that can be built on at the next level. They also need to enjoy their experience if they are going to see success. We do our best to keep this happy medium. We want the kids to learn to love sports and activity while playing in a disciplined and structured environment.
The final thing we do is communicate. We understand what it is like to be a parent. We know how difficult it can be to plan, especially with a lack of information. We know how busy life is for families and with young kids. Our desire is that those families involved in UnFettered Athletics know who and what it is to which they're committing. We do our best to explain how we operate and what are our mission, values, and goals. We want our youth to learn responsibility and commitment, so we need to give their parents the tools to help them execute this on their end. We post on Facebook, Twitter, our website, in print, and via email, what is going on and how to participate. We have parent meetings, make and take telephone calls, text, FB message, and meet for coffee. We are accessible, the lines of communication are open, and we request feedback of all kinds.
How do we do it? Carefully. We work hard to stay true to who we are, realize where we came from, and remember what we are about. We seek advice often and listen to it. As expected of our players, we UnFetter our potential; and we do it in an Alert and Aggressive manner.