We decided this summer to coach my daughters basketball team. A team of 4-5 year olds, 8 boys, 2 girls and half of them had never played in a game before.
The sports league has a smart way of helping the kids learn who to guard. They use colored wristbands. The order of the colors corresponds with skill. This helps match up kids so those who haven't played have a chance to learn vs. be run over by a good player.
We made it to the championship game! Our kids did great. In the final game, we set our wristbands before our players hit the court. The other team sees our players and change their kids bands. The second quarter begins and this happens again. We asked why they were changing the bands when they are supposed to be equated to skill level? The other coach responds, we do it by height because that equates to skill.
Ohhhh no. Not a good thing to say to my 5'3" Division 1 collegiate basketball partner coach! As she shares her opinion in opposition, another coach on the other team walks out to the court to start an argument.
We looked at them, shrugged our shoulders and proceeded to play the game. This season, every single one of our kids had a chance to touch the ball, to bring it down the court, and attempt to pass and shoot. Two of their "tall" kids racked up 33 points to win the game.
But winning for me... was when each one of the parents said to us, "My child had a great time", "Thank you for letting my child play", "Thank you for teaching my child". At 4-5 years old, I assure you... It's not about winning. It's more about learning skills you can use in sports and life in the future. Sometimes you might loose the game, but you win a life lesson!