Developing relationships with local sports coaches can help bring many new athletes into your facility.
If the coach decides to bring their entire team into your facility on a regular basis for practice, those athletes will often decide to come back for additional training on their own. However, just making a positive first contact with a coach can result in referrals and recommendations that can extend well into the future, since coaches are well-connected to your community’s sports scene.
If you offer sports performance programs or sports specific training at your sports facility, coaches clinics are an excellent way to get coaches into your facility and acquainted with your staff. Coaches clinics also offer coaches a valuable networking opportunity where they can share best practices and compare strategies.
How to host a coaches clinic at your sports facility:
- Choose your sports. Identify the sports that are particularly well suited to coaches clinics, based on their popularity in your area and on your own facility’s strengths. Especially if this is your first time hosting a coaches clinic, it helps to start with a sport that you’ve already established plenty of contacts in. At DNA Sports Center, we’ve hosted coaches clinics for baseball, softball and football – all are very popular in the area, and we already have a solid base of coach contacts to use. You should also identify what age levels and competition levels, from recreational to select, that you’d like to target; depending on which groups are the most important to youf facility, you can tailor your schedule and timing to suit them.
- Finalize the date and time. Make sure to do this 3-6 months in advance, making sure that you select a time during the season when the coaches won’t be busy with games or pre-season training. Remember that rec teams have different schedules than school based and competitive teams. One hour for the clinic is sufficient, allowing for optimal learning time without the risk of coaches getting overwhelmed or bored.
- Assign your staff. Make sure your staff develops a curriculum, including both sit-down discussions and hands-on trials of new fitness techniques. You can cover topics such as the latest advancements in training, including the newest speed, agility and strength drills, and on how to improve practices. Develop a printed packet that summarizes the material that you’ll go over that the coaches can take home with them.
- Prepare your materials. You’ll want to provide refreshments, depending on the time of day (at DNA, we host clinics relatively early in the mornings on weekends and provide coffee and bagels), and and make sure the coaches go home with plenty of your facility’s marketing material (apparel, etc.).
- Set your pricing. Keep clinics relatively small for a more intimate atmosphere that facilitates good discussion. Consider charging admission. At DNA Sports Center, we charge around $20 per coach. While it’s tempting to make these clinics free to get a higher attendance rate, adding a cost to the clinic keeps coaches accountable to come, adds more perceived value to the clinic in the coach’s eyes, and covers the cost of refreshments, printed materials and marketing giveaways.
If you would like to discuss planning coaches clinics in more detail, consult with Mike Meszaros at (513) 791-4940.