Where there’s a team, there’s a coach. Whether you’re the coach of an intramural, club, collegiate varsity, professional, or youth sports team, sharing your love of the game with young athletes is a rewarding experience. From developing essential leadership qualities and problem-solving skills

to promoting a sense of community and confidence—in both yourself as a mentor and your players—read on to learn about the advantages of working as a coach. Spoiler Alert: Mentorship is life-changing in more ways than one.

Build Leadership Skills

When it comes to coaching, keeping your athletes’ best interests in mind is the name of the game—both on and off the field. From unlocking player potential and understanding individual personalities to motivating the larger team, delegating responsibilities, and building morale through wins and losses, you’ll find yourself practicing leadership skills on a daily basis. With time, you’ll learn to develop your personal voice and style as a coach and apply what you know to help further establish yourself as a standout leader in the sports industry.

Build Exceptional Planning Skills 

As a team facilitator and backbone of the organization, you can also add ‘project manager’ to your list of skills and collection of ‘hats.’ Between heading up projects, planning and coordinating practice schedules, developing game-day strategies, recruiting new athletes, conducting physical and strength conditioning sessions, and much, much more, the role of an athletic coach extends far beyond the field. Remember, an organized coach equates to greater athlete engagement. Just don’t be surprised by your vacation-planning skills now that you’re used to handling schedules for dozens of players at a time.

Build Communication Skills

Not only will you work with athletes, but you’ll also collaborate with other coaches, managers, trainers, team owners, players’ parents, staff, and even fans, further developing interpersonal skills that will help bolster both your professional and personal life.

Build Community Relationships 

As a key member of the sports team, you’ll have a chance to build deeper connections with like-minded individuals and grow your professional network. You never know when a single conversation with a fellow colleague, parent, or player could spark the beginning of a lifelong relationship. But community-building doesn’t stop there. As a leader, you’ll gain great satisfaction knowing you brought a team together to work toward a shared end goal. As they say, teamwork makes the dream work.

Build Confidence 

By building meaningful connections with players, praising their strengths, offering constructive feedback, and successfully motivating and encouraging players to reach both personal and team goals, you’ll set yourself and your players up for a long and triumphant career in sports—a win-win situation for everyone.

All-in-all, while coaching is an opportunity to boost your personal self-development, you’ll also gain the added benefit of creating close relationships and building lifelong bonds with team members in the field. Most importantly, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment knowing the life lessons you learn—and teach—will far outreach any game. Ultimately, giving your players the tools they need to succeed is the greatest reward.