There is no such thing as an uncoachable athlete

As I was browsing through my feed on Instagram this week, I stumbled upon this captivating wrestling coaching clip.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Pat Moroney (@patmoroney)

This video struck a chord with me, resonating with a long-standing principle embedded in my coaching philosophy – that there isn’t an uncoachable athlete out there. Indeed, we may encounter players who lack motivation, those who find it challenging to embrace feedback for what it truly is – a constructive pathway to improvement, and some who might not consistently bring their best selves to the pitch, both in the literal and figurative sense.

But here’s the crux – as coaches, it’s incumbent upon us to forge that vital connection with our players. We need to stand steadfast in our communication efforts and strive to gain insights into the mental and emotional landscapes that our athletes navigate both in rugby and life.

Remember, coaching transcends mere skill development and tactical enhancements. It’s about identifying and seizing every potential moment to create a profound rapport with the individuals under our wing. Embracing such challenges not only defines us as coaches but also solidifies the trust and respect within our teams.

We must create a sporting environment that feels like a second home – where each athlete inherently feels they have a rightful place and an unwavering sense of belonging. When expertly executed, this approach fosters an atmosphere ripe for growth, camaraderie, and unparalleled sporting excellence.

As the coaches say in the video – coaching is something to lean into, not away from, have the tough conversation, make the tough call, and be the best version of yourself.

Morris HS Girl’s Abby Buratti carrying the ball at the 2023 New York Sevens. Photo ©2023 Pat Moroney

In the past, too often, I was not; I let insignificant challenges under my skin and prevented myself from performing to the best of my ability. I now realize that I must lean into the challenge, enjoy the grind, and make all my coaches, parents, athletes, and administrators feel like they belong.

What do you think?