BC Coaches Week Profile: Charlie Law - Baseball and Basketball
British Columbia Coaches Week is September 20-27. An initiative of viaSport, this week focuses on the recruitment, development and celebration of sport coaches with events around the province. In honour of BC Coaches Week, we wanted to introduce and profile some of our BC Games Coaches.
The BC Winter and BC Summer Games are an important part of BC’s athlete development pathway, but the Games also provide an important opportunity for coaching development including earning certification, attending coaching clinics, and learning from other coaches around the province. Organizations like Baseball BC have made the BC Games an important part of their coaching development where young coaches can learn from experienced coaches like Charlie Law of Vernon.
Question and Answers with Charlie Law
How long have you been coaching?
I have been coaching youth baseball for 16 years and high school basketball for 8 years. I've also coached Special Olympics Basketball for 3 years.
What is your coaching certification level?
I am Provincially Certified in Baseball and Regionally Trained in Basketball.
How many BC Games and/or Canada Games have you attended as a coach?
I have been to three BC Summer Games for Baseball, the 2011 Western Canada Summer Games for Baseball, and a BC Winter Games for Special Olympics Basketball.
Why did you choose to get into coaching?
I chose to get into coaching for two main reasons: I wanted to be involved with my two sons when they were little athletes, and I wanted to be able to help child and youth athletes in general get better (as athletes and citizens) while learning to love a sport, hopefully for life.
What is your favorite thing about coaching?
Hard to pick only one favourite! I guess I would choose my attempts to make competition fun; the process not the outcome, seeing the pure joy and fun I detect in young athletes while they're playing a GAME. Win or lose. "We're here to win, but let's win the right way".
Do you have a particular coaching style?
My coaching style is best described as laid back and mentally tough.
I'm pretty easy going with the athletes, no military or teacher in my blood. I only ask for max mental effort. The intensity is in my passion for the mental minutiae of the game, (situations, strategy). I like teaching my players to be "heads up" at all times.
What is your favorite memory from the BC Games and/or Canada Games?
One of my favourite memories from this past BC Games was watching two pitchers I'd only just met perform outstandingly in pressure situations. Particularly the starting pitcher who was David to the heavily favoured Goliath team- he baffled the other squad for 6 innings and we almost pulled off a huge upset. I loved watching his self confidence increase every inning!
What were you able to learn from other coaches at the BC Games?
I learned some more about the importance of organization and planning. I had a very detail oriented assistant.
How is coaching at a multi-sport Games different from a single sport event?
Coaching at a multi-sport event is a lot more fun and enriching simply because there are a broad range of athletes and coaches from various communities playing different sports. You meet more new people and get to cheer on your fellow zone team mates when you're not playing. It's quite dynamic that way.
What has been your best success in coaching?
My best success in coaching results wise has been a 2006 Provincial Championship in Peewee Baseball and a Silver Medal at the 2011 Western Canada Summer Games in Kamloops. My best success athlete development wise was helping a first year player with very little confidence, and no experience playing baseball, turn into a confident hitting machine by the end of the year!
Do you have a coach mentor?
I look up to the coaching style and philosophy of the late John Wooden, who coached UCLA Basketball for many years and was very successful, and extremely well respected. He's the gold standard in my opinion (and in the opinion of others) and I have a long way to go yet!!
What are your next goals as a coach?
My goals for the future are to coach in next year's Western Canada Summer Games in Wood Buffalo Alberta, and to begin coaching at the University level in three years.
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