So, you’re a trainer

Posted on March 14, 2014 by


This one is for all the skaters out there who’ve found themselves on the training committee or fancy themselves on the training committee.

Most trainers are appointed based on their level of skating/derby skills (or they only feel comfortable volunteering for the role once they reach a certain level of skill). But just because someone is good at something doesn’t mean they can help others to develop (and conversely, just because someone can’t do something doesn’t mean they can’t coach others to be able to).

Up N Atom leads a session with LCD's Regimental Rollers

Up N Atom leads a session with LCD’s Regimental Rollers

Learning to be an effective trainer adds a whole ‘nother level of derby development. It can be an awesome experience. Sometimes you might feel a bit lost though. One way to improve is through self-reflection.

Take a look at the questions below and apply them to the last time you ran a training session. You can print off the Coach Self Evaluation form (from the Australian Sports Commission website) and fill it out after your next session too. Do you see a pattern? Is there a particular area you can identify for improvement?


Did I reinforce the actions of the participants in a positive manner when they performed correctly?

Did I reward effort in addition to outcome?

Did I give compliments sincerely and honestly?

Did I use sarcasm to get my message across?

Did I give constructive and specific feedback?

Did what I said to the participants match my non-verbal actions towards them?

Was I consistent and fair in my treatment of all participants?

Did I over-coach during training/game by giving too many instructions?

Did I change my communication methods to suit the needs of the participants?

Did I encourage the participants to have an input into team decisions and did I listen to them when they had something to say?

Did I reinforce team rules fairly and consistently?


Did I show the enthusiasm while coaching that I expect from the participants?

Did the participants have fun during the training/game?

Was I aware of any anxiety or nervousness experienced by the participants and did I help to reduce this?

Did I emphasise winning too much?


Was I prompt in arriving at training/game?

Was I well prepared and organised for training sessions?

Was my training session varied and interesting so that it challenged all participants and developed self-esteem and confidence?

Did every participant have equal game time or did I over-play the more skilled participants?

Was I able to analyse skills and correct errors when they occurred?

Did I exercise self-control in situations that made me angry?

Was I sensitive to the individual needs of all the participants?

Did I personally demonstrate good sporting behaviour?

Did I argue with, or complain about, officials?

Did I encourage parents to attend games?

Was I patient and tolerant with all participants, regardless of individual skill levels?