Tag: leading with the heart

WYC 084 – Youth Basketball – Ryan Hohman talks Starting your own Youth Sports Program from scratch

Ryan Hohman has lived in the Pennsbury School District for 29 years and has been working with children since he was ten years old when his mother ran an in home daycare out of his home in the Thornridge section of Levittown. He attended West Chester University and graduated with a degree in education, and after two years of teaching in the city of Philadelphia, Ryan returned to Pennsbury where he has served as a Language Arts teacher and head basketball coach at William Penn Middle School for the past 10 years. Coach Hohman has established a reputation as a dedicated and passionate teacher both in the classroom and on the court. He has established Lady Falcons Elite Hoops to offer the level of basketball instruction that the girls of his beloved community deserve. Coach Hohman lives in the North Park section of Levittown with his wife Brooke and their two daughters Joley and Nola.

Facebook: /LFEHoops

Website: ladyfalconselitehoops.org

Listen Now:

Listen on iTunes: iTunes link

Listen on Stitcher: Stitcher link

Listen on Google Play Music: Google Play link


‘It’s about we, not about me

If you can’t find the youth sports program you want…start your own!

  • Ryan was frustrated with the lack of attention the leaders of the youth basketball program were giving to the girls side of the program
  • They did a bunch of research on how to start a non-profit, did a Gofundme, and launched program with 250+ girls in the 1st year and going into year 3 they will have 450+ girls!

Coaching your own kids

  • ‘You told me to pass more’ – Ryan was very stubborn when his dad coached him, and one time after scoring 27 points, his dad told him to pass more, so for the next couple games Ryan overreacted and took it to the opposite spectrum
  • Ryan goes with the ‘I love to watch you play’ after coaching his daughters
  • Ryan wants ‘Try-hards’ – kids that give it their all

My Cringe Moments

  • Most of all of Ryan’s cringe moments are sarcastic things he said to refs
  • The second thing was he used to take the results of all the games way too personally

Teaching Skills

  • You have to establish what the core fundamentals are that the level of kids you are coaching need
  • Make skill work fun and turn it into a game
  • With smaller kids it often starts with their feet!
  • Good game: Defensive slide duck-duck-goose: So you play the normal game but have to do defensive slide when running around the circle.
  • Another good game: Jump stop Mr. Fox

Mental Toughness/Achieving Peak Performance

  • Biggest thing a coach can do to help his kids: SMILE. Remind them that this is fun
  • Jay Bilas’ book Toughness talks about ‘Next Play’ – you can’t worry about previous plays, bad calls, etc. – you need to focus on the Next Play
  • All you can control is yourself and preparation, so don’t worry about things outside of your control

Culture – Discipline/Rewards/Teambuilding

  • Anytime they refer to people involved in the program they talk about the LFE Family. They constantly hashtag #LFEFamily
  • Establishing mentors within the program – Have the older girls connect with the younger girls
  • The standard is that everyone is going to work hard

Connecting with and Impacting Kids

  • Ryan coached a team that had a really tough situation with a girl who had a serious eating disorder – the team rallied around helping this girl out and it actually brought the team together

The One that got away

  • They have one team that spooks his girls – the best thing he has found is just to be prepared.

Best borrowed/stolen idea

  • Rick Pitino – ‘As I go through practice, I try to make corrections in 7 seconds or less.’ There needs to be a rhythm and pace to your practice. For youth- maybe this needs to be 20 seconds.
  • Tharp Gallimore study of John Wooden’s practice: What a Coach can Teach a Teacher

Favorite coaching book/quote

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The Experts’ Reading List

The Experts’ Reading List 
One of the great things about interviewing talented coaches from all over the world is getting to pick their brain on where their mind is being fed. So we’ll take a break from our coaching series this week and I’ll share a great reading list that I’ve compiled from my podcast guests. Then next week we’ll start up a new series on Building a Winning Culture.
I’ve read 12 of these, how many have you read? My challenge to you is to pick 2 or 3 to read in the next 6 months, that is what I’m going to do. I’ve just ordered Pete Carroll’s Win Forever, Jon Gordon’s The Energy Bus, and Patrick Lencioni’s The 5 Dsyfunctions of a Team.
I’ve included hyperlinks to all of the books on Amazon, so just click on the name of the book and order it today! Don’t wait or you won’t do it. No excuses.
Also – my friend James Leath published a post with his reading list – check it out for some more great recommendations – Link
  1. Pyramid of Success by Coach John Wooden
  2. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie – the story ‘Father Forgets’ is timeless
  3. The Gold Standard’ by Coach K. – story of bringing together the Dream Team
  4. Raising a Modern Day Knight by Robert Lewis – story of bringing a boy into manhood
  5. Lead for God’s Sake by Todd Gongwer
  6. Inside-Out Coaching by Joe Ehrmann – ‘Be a transformational coach rather than a transactional coach’
  7. Season of Life by Jeffrey Marx – about Joe Ehrmann
  8. Leading with the Heart by Mike Krzyzewski
  9. The Talent Code by Daniel Coyle
  10. The Best-Laid Plans of a High School Basketball CEO by Randy Montgomery and Matt Kramer
  11. The River of Doubt by Candice Millard – about Teddy Roosevelt dealing with defeat by challenging himself to a huge audacious goal
  12. Teaching to Change Lives by Dr. Howard Hendricks
  13. How Children Succeed by Paul Tough
  14. The Inner Game of Tennis: The Classic Guide to the Mental Side of Peak Performance by W. Timothy Gallwey
  15. The 10X Rule by Grant Cardone ‘Never cut anything, never dilute greatness, never pull back on your horsepower, and never put a limit on your ambition, drive, and passion. Demand obsession of yourself and all those around you.’
  16. David and Goliath by Malcolm Gladwell
  17. What a Coach can teach a teacher by Tharp&Gallimore – Followed John Wooden and analyzes the % of his communication
  18. The Sports Gene by David Epstein
  19. Mindset by Carol Dweck
  20. The Energy Bus by Jon Gordon – Get the energy vampires off the bus and surround yourselves with energy-givers and life-givers
  21. Double goal coach by Jim Thompson of PCA
  22. The Whole-Brain Child by Daniel Siegel
  23. The 5 Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni
  24. 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
  25. Coaching Made Easier: How to Successfully Manage Your Youth Baseball Team—A Step-by-Step Guide to a Rewarding Season by Rod Huff
  26. Coaching Basketball Successfully by Morgan Wootten
  27. Win Forever by Pete Carroll
  28. The Score Takes Care of Itself by Bill Walsh
  29. Positivity by Barbara Frederickson – Great book for self-talk
  30. The Female Brain by Louann Brizendine
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WYC 039 Dr. Michael Phillips talks Long Term Athlete and Coach Development

What does it take to be a winning youth coach? Listen in as Dr. Michael Phillips shares stories and discusses his journey to becoming a successful youth sports coach.

Michael is a professor of exercise science at Tennessee Tech University.  He has coached basketball at all levels – 5th grade AAU, middle school, high school, and 8 years at the collegiate level.  Michael also has studied and presented the concept of LTAD and LTCD – Long Term Athlete Development and Long Term Coach Development – concepts used by the Canadians and British, and being studied by the US Olympic Committee.  Michael is married and has 2 children, a 13 year-old son and 8 year-old daughter.

Twitter: @docphillips1

Facebook: /mikephillips

Listen Now:

Listen in ITunes: Itunes link

Listen in Stitcher: Stitcher link


Coaching/Leadership Quote

‘The two most important days in your life are the day you are born, and the day you figure out why’ – attributed to Mark Twain

Coaching Your Own Kids

  • It’s hard to strike a fair balance of how hard to be on your own kid

My Cringe & ‘Ah-Ha’ Moments

  • Being a former player – in Michael’s early years he realized he couldn’t just show up and teach them what he knew – he had to learn how to teach kids

Teaching Children & Keeping it Fun

  • Michael found 2 keys to learning how to teach/coach:

1 – Going to coaching clinics

2 – Talking to other coaches

  • Begin lots of drills without a ball – teach them the footwork first, then add in a ball
  • Great drill – Split the kids in half and have them do drills towards mid-court so they meet their teammates and can watch/learn as they go

Mental Peak Performance

  • Practices have to be fun, challenging, and competitive
  • Preparation is the key to achieving peak performance.  Take the thinking out of it- so they can just perform.  Make practices game-like so they don’t have surprises during the game.

Coaching Resources



  • Spend much more time praising the kids who are doing it right – and much less time getting on the kids who aren’t behaving.  Often the misbehaving kids want attention so if you are giving all the attention to the kids who are doing it right, the misbehavers will fall in line.

Inspiring Story

  • Michael gave a scholarship to a kid who wasn’t as athletically gifted as some others but had an unbelievable work-ethic and attitude.  Michael really connected with the kid and they had a great experience.

Long Term Athlete Development and Long Term Coach Development

  • Canada and Great Britain have created programs that look at long-term athlete development instead of putting kids on teams immediately focused on winning
  • Most new coaches in the U.S. have never been trained on coaching


  • When you coach – ask yourself: is your primary goal the long-term development of the athlete, or just winning?

The One that Got Away

  • When coaching college against his big rival – Coach Phillips showed some ‘Braveheart’ clips pre-game – and his guys got over-fired up before the game, and had absolutely no energy left 5 minutes into the game.  Lesson learned: be more methodical and business-like in pre-game, not too rah-rah.

Coaching/Leadership Motivation

  • Quote: ‘The two most important days in your life are the day you are born, and the day you figure out why’ – attributed to Mark Twain


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