When trying out for a team, moving up a team or meeting a new team coach, it is important for players to make the right impression. Coaches look at your skills, fitness and condition; however, they also look for certain qualities in players which will help them determine your position, your ability as a player, as well as your success as a member of the team.
Next time you need to make an impression, keep the points below in mind and hopefully the coach will select you for their team.
- Have passion:
Passion does not stop at how much you love to play the game and your personal hockey goals. It extends much further; you need to love the game regardless of your personal involvement in it. Play the game because you love the game, not because you want to show off or win. When you watch other teams perform, applaud good players and decisions regardless of what team they play for, your allegiances, or what level they are on.
- Keep persevering:
This is the ability to always move forward, regardless of setbacks or failures. It is also the mind-set that you are confident that you are on the right track, both in the game and in life. Coaches look for players who are willing, and able, to continue playing even if you have missed a goal or have been tackled and lost the ball.
- Your ability to work in a team:
Coaches look for hockey players who are able to work in a team successfully. The qualities of a good teammate and good sportsmanship include showing concern for your teammates, helping weaker teammates with their skills, listening to and giving other players suggestions, and showing support for teammates if your team loses.
- Be humble:
Humility is acknowledging that there is always room for improvement within yourself. A humble player does not overestimate or underestimate their abilities and is realistically confident in themselves. It also means you are motivated to train and play even if others are not so enthusiastic – this allows coaches to see you are an eager player who can tackle important roles and reach goals. If you win, applaud the opposing team and treat them with respect.
- Be positive and realistic:
It is important to remain positive during a match or practice, but you should try to stay realistic with your positivity too. Your team will not win every game and you may not always score a goal or contribute to an important line of play, but do not see these as failures. Disappointment is natural but it is what you chose to do with that disappointment that counts; find the areas you need improvement on and keep working on these.
- Don’t be a sore loser:
Your attitude towards the game is something that coaches are always monitoring. Your conduct on the field is of the utmost importance and it is important that you conduct yourself in a sportsmanlike manner; that is with dignity and respect. If you disagree with the umpire, don’t make a scene about it. Regardless of the decision, treat match officials with respect. After all, arguing with the umpire isn’t going to help you or your team.