An Open Letter To The Coach That Pushed Me
Sports

An Open Letter To The Coach That Pushed Me

There were days I thought you were going to kill me, but really you made me stronger.

1887
Shelbyville Times Gazette

The thing that separates a good coach from a great coach is knowing your team, and not just in the “she can knock down a three” kinda way but knowing each player as a person. At the time I played for you, I didn’t know that, but now I understand that the reason why you pushed us so hard was because you weren’t just out to make exceptional basketball players out of us but exceptional people too.

There were many days that I dreaded practice like the plague. We’d all already heard that one of us had gotten in trouble, and we knew that we were all about to die for their stupidity. We might as well just start running as soon as we were stretched. But as much as we complained to each other and cut our eyes at you, we were learning that in life, many times you suffer the consequences of the actions of others, and that’s just how it’s always gonna be. Who knew those sprints were more than cardio?

Some days you’d show up to practice, and I could have sworn that you hated me. It seemed like I couldn’t do anything right, regardless of how hard I tried. But no matter how terrible it was or I was, practice always ended just like the trials in your life are always going to come to an end too. Sometimes it feels like life has a great big ole target taped to your forehead, but those days don’t last forever, and I know that it’s going to be alright. And the next day at practice, I might even get hot, and shoot the lights out.

There was absolutely no being late or MIA on your team. If practice was at 4:30 that really meant that we should be there at 3:45 dressed and ready to go. If you showed up at 4:15, you were already late.

You simply did not miss practice. You just didn’t. I came to practice with strep throat on more than one occasion. It was that important that I be there. I can’t even tell you how many times that I’ve had a nightmare that my alarm didn’t go off, and I missed morning practice. It was a legitimate concern (even for months after I graduated). You taught me how important it is to fulfill a commitment in my life and to make it a top priority. I learned the importance of time management and sacrifice for sure.

Some days I knew that I didn’t have any more to give. I was exhausted physically and mentally. But you knew that I had more left, and you demanded that I give my all. And somewhere inside of me I found more energy and effort that I didn’t even know existed. I wanted to give up at times, but you refused to let me quit. You were teaching me that life’s not always easy, and a whole lot of times I’m going to think that I have nothing left. But because of you, I know that I do. It’s in there; I just need to push harder.

You demanded perfection, and we weren’t perfect (and neither were our skills). If we were up by 12 at half time, some coaches would have been overjoyed but not you. You wanted to know why weren’t up by 30 because the other team sucked, and we should be embarrassed that people paid money to watch this crap. Of course, you knew real perfection was out of the question, but you were teaching us how successful we could be if we set our expectations for ourselves that high. If you shoot for the moon, you might still land amongst the stars.

Thank you for pushing me. Thank you for pushing us.

Some say that you’re a successful coach because you practice your team so much and have so much natural talent to work with. But I know that it’s because you push your team and your players, and teach them lessons that go beyond the numbers on their backs. You see excellence in each and every one of them and make it your goal to pull that out (now matter how many 1:10’s in a row it takes). There were days I thought you were going to kill me, but really you made me stronger. Thank-you for pushing me.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Lifestyle

Founders Of Color Q&A: Yarlap's MaryEllen Reider On Destigmatizing Women's Health

The father-daughter duo co-founded the brand and has since generated a passionate, dedicated community of women.

MaryEllen Reider

I was lucky enough to meet MaryEllen Reider over a decade ago as a fellow freshman in college. Since then, I had the luxury of being able to witness her evolution from the faithful companion I went to my first job fair with to the woman who is now a pioneer in destigmatizing the portrayal of women's reproductive health.

Keep Reading... Show less

My favorite Editor was feeling under the weather yesterday. All I wanted was to make her a vegan iced matcha latte. With distance forbidding it, I instead decided to write up this quick, easy recipe. I made it to be vegan and organic for optimal health benefits.

Matcha green tea is made from grounded green tea leaf and it comes with the most antioxidant boost ever.

Keep Reading... Show less

This coffee brand is USDA organic. Newman's Own Keurig coffee flavors are all organic. They have French Roast, Decaf, and a Special Blend. I'm in a committed relationship with the French Roast flavor. The smell alone from dispensing 1 cup of coffee sets a whole cafe jazz vibe.

I'm already relaxed when I smell the coffee all ready for dressing. The way I make my coffee is simple and sweet, literally. I add a spoon of organic brown sugar and a splash of organic almond vanilla milk. This cup of coffee has changed my life forever. I have never been so productive in my life and I truly believe it's because the coffee is organic.

Keep Reading... Show less

These organic, cruelty-free skincare products are great for hot, sweaty summers. I use them every day, so you will find my honest opinion about them all. I highly recommend using organic products because they are least likely to be harmful to your body.

This may seem like an extra step when it comes to your beauty routine, but it's really easy. These 5 products could be the start of your next beauty venture.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

These 5 Black Handbag Designers Should Be On Every Accessory Lover's Radar

With the push to support more Black-owned businesses, we've put together a list of Black owned handbag designers.

Ever since the current upheaval of societal silence happening in the country caused by the #BlackLivesMatter movement, there has been a bigger push for people to support Black-owned businesses.

Granted, there are a lot fo Black-owned businesses to support, it just takes time to find them. With that being said, fashion is a sector, just like any sector really, in a culture that still has people of color calling out for more diversity.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Feel A Lil' Better: Because Therapy Dogs Aren't Just Cute, They're Working

Your weekly wellness boost from Odyssey.

No matter how good (or bad) you'd describe your health, one thing is for sure: a little boost is ALWAYS a good idea. Whether that's reading a new, motivating book, or listening to a song that speaks to your soul, there are plenty of resources to help your health thrive on any given day.

There are many different ways people overcome obstacles in their lives. Thankfully, the stigma surrounding therapy is slowly (but surely) slipping away and we're opening up about our problems and needs. For some, a good workout is just as relaxing. Others are learning how meditation can be a helpful tool in their mental health journey.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments