November 3, 2007
Bring Your Kids To The Stadiums To See The ’Big Guys’ Play
Koach Karl - Here is the second part to Coach Gianni's great article…
I remember that when I was 5, my father gave private lessons at night to Architect students, teaching them how to correctly draw blue prints. Just listening and looking, I was able to put on paper orthogonal projections and I learned the rules of prospective drawing, before going to school!
Often my father asked me to show the students how to solve a prospective problem and I can’t forget when, around 10 years old, I corrected at school a teacher who was drawing something wrong on the board. So, no one taught me. I just looked and listen when I was 5, probably 4!
Coming to soccer, my father, before the war, being a professional soccer player, obviously began to teach me soccer when I was little. Unfortunately, a little to hard for my age. More than 50 years ago, the modern technique to teach soccer to kids, wasn’t invented yet so, he coached me like his professional coach, coached him! But, I learned anyway, even if the hard way.
But, the passion for soccer, even if I had played soccer for hours everyday, come in another way. And that is by seeing the greatest players play. LIVE not on TV! (which anyway, is already something.)
It was going to the soccer stadiums that started the real ‘addiction‘!
If you have read the book “Fever pitch” by Nick Hornby, you understand what I’m talking about. It was even made into a movie. Careful not to see the ’stupid’ remake that was done about the Red Sox! The original is about soccer. About Arsenal, to be more precise.
So, if you’d like for your sons and daughters to get passionate about soccer, besides playing it, which is the fist ingredient to getting passionate about it, really understand and get the right feeling about it, bring them to the stadiums to see the ’big guys’ play and, when some teams from Europe or South America, like Barcelona, Real Madrid, Liverpool, Manchester United, A.C. Milan, Boca Junior or River Plate, come for exhibition games, drive even hundreds miles or take a plane and go see them. Just one time in a stadium full of 50/60 thousand people that sustain their soccer teams, and the ‘magic’ will start. And, it will be there forever! This Un incubo will be there forever!
So, when they go back and play, they will try to imitate the champion’s moves and style. This will push them in trying to get better, more than all the instructions that we try to transfer to them, because they saw directly what it means to be great!
If you are lucky enough to have good soccer skills and play during the week end, even better. Just looking at you, your kids will dream, one day, to be on the field like mom and dad and score goals.
Emulation is the greatest motivator. So, just do the right things and say the right words, not necessarily directly to them. They will copy you from the beginning. In particular when they are not talking yet.
The fact that they don’t talk yet, doesn’t mean that they don’t listen or see!
As I said at the beginning, through these two senses, they will acquire almost the totality of the information that will accompany them through the journey of their life. Give them good companions to travel with.
Soccer, could be one of them, even if, of course, there are other hundreds of good companions like books, brushes, canvas, musical instruments, pets, traveling, sunsets, dawns, fires, songs, movies, paintings, sculptures, oceans, skies, grass, sand, blue eyes, old t-shirts and… on and on and the best companion ever… parents. Real ones. Possibly two!
Coach Gianni can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org