There are many ways in which a captain can influence a game on a weekend at any level. A captain can lead by example by doing the things on the ground that inspire others. They can lead by voice and organisation. As the older age groups have more involved captains as they make their way through to senior footy, it is also important to help develop young players in their leadership skills which can assist them with whatever they do in life.
Leadership Roles and Captain
Teaching young players the importance of responsibility and leadership is a life skill that goes beyond footy. Therefore, introducing leadership roles from an early age can be beneficial to their personal development. If you have a tackers team up to about under 11’s, there are ways in which to do this. Instead of picking captains, you could give roles to players on a rotating basis to ensure everyone gets a go. Some of the duties or responsibilities that a young player can be given are:
– Thanking helpers on the day
– Saying congratulations to all the players in front of the group
– Some players are in charge of putting rubbish away
– Thanking umpires
– Help put equipment away
These are some of the things you can do with young players to start making them understand responsibility. This can help their captaincy skills in the future.
Picking a captain in juniors…
This can be a tough task. Some players are born leaders and will pick themselves. Some leaders are not so obvious and may need some inspiration or opportunity to try the role before they realise they are a natural and talented leader. Therefore, in the junior age groups where the focus is on development, fun and education; captains can be rotated so that everyone gets a go. Each week two captains can be named and they can decide who wants to give the a pre games address, or who gets to flip the coin and choose which end. It is important to let all your players experience captaincy. It just might make a player feel more confident and included, which will help them develop better and stay in the sport for a lot longer.