About a year ago, I met Pam Baker. While out for a walk, we bonded over our passion for empowering women to lead through sports, specifically through encouraging them to become coaches. Pam shared her vision to create a training program for young women to learn how to coach and prepare them for their careers. She wanted her program to include coaching best practices, sport specific coaching techniques, and transferable leadership skills into the world outside of sports. Fast forward a few months, Pam has surrounded herself with the best of the best in coaching and women’s sports, and done countless hours of research to create the Women’s Coaching Alliance.
The WCA mission is “to grow the amount of women coaching youth sports, by connecting female athletes with coaching opportunities, mentorship, and preparing them to be great leaders within and outside of sports. And boost the odds that all kids get a great coach whose positive influence impacts them for life.” It has been really exciting to watch Pam and her team launch and host their first cohorts of leadership academies in volleyball, soccer, and basketball. Check out their social media to see coaching testimonials and happy kids loving playing their sport.
This season, softball is one of the WCA’s expansion sports, and I had the privilege of working alongside the leadership coaching team. My role was to create a softball specific coaching curriculum that the new coaches could use. The idea is that after a new coach goes through the Leadership Academy, they would be fully prepared to run their first practice, and have the tools they need to plan their own. Coaching is most impactful when it is intentional and I created an eight week season outline for coaches to follow with skill progressions in throwing, fielding, and hitting.
Yesterday Pam and the WCA team hosted its softball Leadership Academy, an experience I will never forget. The room was full of women and allied men who are passionate about coaching and sports. The young women joining the program shared their sports stories and talked a little about the coaches who impacted them in their careers. Hearing the coaches speak about wanting to connect to their players, and show empathy for their future players was powerful. I knew we had the right women in the room to lead in the future. They already understood the importance of being a relational coach instead of just worrying about x’s and o’s. All we, the instructors, had to do was give them the tools to make it happen.
Thank you to the WCA for having me yesterday. I am excited to partner again and continue to be a resource for the cohort. The future of female coaching looks bright!