Derrick and I have taken on a new challenge because we have so much extra time on our hands :) A few months ago the area frisbee organization sent out a list of high schools that were seeking coaches for this upcoming season. There just happened to be a high school men's team that was just a few minutes down the road from us seeking a coach. Rather impulsively we emailed to inquire about it and here we are! About 8 practices in and loving every minute of it!
We had discussed finding a volunteer opportunity or doing something to give back so when this popped up it seemed like a pretty natural fit for us. We obviously love the game, Derrick coached the NCSU team for year, and we have both been playing on the same team for the past 6+ years so we're pretty much on the same page when it comes to drills, practices, and playing ultimate in general. Our friend Somer heard we were coaching and was eager to help as well which has been awesome! It's much easier to wrangle 21 high school boys with 3 people then with 2.
So far we have loved it! I remember feeling really intimidated in high school. I was not very confident in myself. I had my close friends and the barn and I didn't stray much from there. So the thought of high school has never inspired overly happy and joyful feelings in general. I think this is changing that for me. These guys are great! They are so respectful and nice and encouraging! We always get a "Hey Coach!" when we arrive and a "Thanks Coach" when practice is over. I've learned about their other hobbies, where they hope to go to college, who they root for in football, where they are volunteering, what part time jobs they have or are trying to get, what instrument they play in band. We have one guy who is a great singer! Another guy who wants to do medical research when he grows up. It's just been so cool to get to know them and this is just 3 weeks in!
Derrick's work is of course amazing. Microsoft is completely pro-volunteering so they have no problem with him leaving two times a week at 3:15 to coach. We have three practices a week and have had great attendance so far.
It's certainly been challenging and it takes me back to my NCSU fall semesters because we are focusing so much on the basics of ultimate right now. It can be overwhelming to think about all of the things we haven't even begun to teach yet and to watch the scrimmages go a little wild! It's hard to rein them in and get them to focus. That being said there is a huge moment of pride when we see our lone freshman with his hand in the air yelling for his team to set the stack. Or when we see our new track convert finally getting his flick to fly straight. Or even when we see a player show up with cleats for the first time after we've been suggesting them all season!
The high school season goes from January through May with practices starting in November. We have a long way to go but we're so excited to see how we do this year! Wish us luck and we'll keep you posted!