The following post was contributed by Ryan Lombardozzi, NCEA Social Media Coordinator.
How should prayer and spiritual formation be incorporated into the athletic community?
Three Assumptions of Coaches:
- Love Your Sport
- Working With Young People – is a source of joy
The spirituality of coaching begins with supporting one another through:
- Praying for your athletes and roster
- Praying for fellow coaches
- Attending fellow coach’s games
- Service projects
- Switching the coaches for the boy/girl’s team for a practice
In the presentation given by Ann Stricherz, she spoke about systematic programming for the faith training of our student athletes and how it can lead to the success of our mission and values.
Coaches should begin each season with the end in mind. Host a commencement for an evening full of reflection. Find meaningful ways to conclude the season and thoughtful ideas to integrate the theme of the school year. Reflect on where you find beauty in the sport and what you are grateful for. The spirituality of coaches starts with supporting one another and committing to two or three things that could be done for the season in terms of prayers and practice with purpose.
Everyday is a spiritual discipline looking for beauty.
Teams should grow closer together through team-based events. Try praying creatively for your teammates, coaches, athletic director, league officials, those struggling with injuries and for yourself. Invite a team chaplain to bring the team together in prayer before and after sporting events. Have team rituals such as a jersey dedication to share traditions about school numbers and why the players decided the choose the number they wear.
It’s about getting comfortable with being uncomfortable.
Finally, reflect on the question, “how are we teaching student athletes to be successful and faith filled?”