Connect with us




VJ Stanley

VJ Stanley

Any team has certain dynamics that change through the course of a practice, game, and season. The key component to any successful season, (you notice I did not say WINNING season because you can’t control who wins and losses so stop concentrating on it so much)) is that the players have trust with the coach and each other.

Then you want to have the experience be fun. Kids play for fun. They are not mini adults or remote controlled robots attached to a coach’s personal joy stick. They are kids. Embrace who they are as kids and allow them to be creative. Teach them the difference between making a mistake and failure

Kids are naturally competitive, Put 10 kids at the end line of a basketball court and one sheet pizza at the opposing foul line, no coach needs to do any coaching there, no structure needed. Blow a whistle and watch em go!

So how do you get the trust? And it is trust, not respect. Because trust is reciprocal and that’s what fuels success. You do it by embracing Inner team competition. No entitlement. He who plays best plays most. 7% of your most talented player (notice I did not say best player) is not better than 100% from another player who is sitting. That’s not fair completion, and that’s how coaches and team’s start to have cracks in their foundation. Nobody who dresses for a game sits on the bench the whole game. The human body does not fully develop until 22, 23, and 24 so to say a player is a sub, or a bench guy is not supported by medical facts. Nobody gets better sitting on the bench watching, nobody!

We all love and have seen the late bloomer. If a good player screws up the next guy goes in. It’s called play by performance. At Frozen Shorts we teach this every day here is my interview with SoccerNation that fully explains how we operate and what we concentrate on in our talks, workshops, seminars and coaching clinics.


Because if something is really true, it is true across the board, not just for hockey or any sport. This paradigm includes academics, dance, violin, music, etc.

Too many times we manage our kids to our expectations not their needs. Let them be creative and have fun. That is the optimum time for growth both mental and physical!

You can buy VJs book, Stop the Tsunami in Youth Sports through VJs website, follow him on twitter @VJJStanley, like him on Face book at frozenshorts, or contact him at to book him for your group organization, or team for his consulting services, speaking engagements, and seminars or just to talk about youth sports.

VJ Stanley has written a book called, “Stop the Tsunami in Youth Sports.” Achieving Balanced Excellence and Health while Embracing the Value of Play for Fun. You can follow VJ on twitter @VJJStanley, go to his website to read other blogs and see video interviews of Doctors, Athletes, coaches, and more. You can follow him on face book, or contact him at His book: Stop the Tsunami in Youth Sports is available in E-Reader and paperback through his website

Click to comment

2024 State Tourney Guide Issue

Click on the cover to view!

2024 Hockey Day MN Recap Issue

Click on the cover to view!

Sign Up Here to Receive Our Free E-edition!


More in Prep