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FSM
08-17-2007, 09:56 PM
Interesting topic from another forum: "Do young female athletes play as well for a female coach as they would for a male coach?" Any thoughts?

Vman971
08-17-2007, 10:16 PM
My 2 older daughters have played for both and their preferences have been based on the personality of the coach and not the gender.

My oldest (20) had 1 female coach she liked and 1 she didn't. Same with her male coaches. one of them she adored and he made it fun for the girls, the other was a complete idiot who was more interested in seeing how loud he could yell and had no idea what he was doing. It was no wonder the team forfeited the last 3 league games because nobody wanted to play for him.

My middle child (16) had a female coach her first 2 years in soccer that was good to her and had male coaches from U12 to U15 that she enjoyed playing for.

My youngest (10) has only played for a male coaches and I honestly don't think she'd care one way or the other. She just wants to play for whoever is coaching the team

beentheredonethat
08-18-2007, 01:23 AM
I think that part of the issue is that there is a lesser number of female coaches than male coaches and regardless of gender not every coach is a good coach. A truly great coach can inspire regardless of their gender or the gender they are working with.

MASoccer
08-18-2007, 08:42 AM
Another interesting take on this is how many female coaches coach boy's teams? On rare occasion I have seen a female coach on teams my sons have played against. I believe that every time this has happened the level of play is more recreational (indoor leagues, summer high school league, 3V3, etc.) We certainly see a large amount of men coaching girl's teams by why is the reverse not as apparent? I know for my sons (sadly) it is about typical stereotypes that foster themselves in young men. Many years ago I remember asking my younger son if he would like to be coached by Mia Hamm. His response was, "Duh, of course I would she's the best!" Now when I ask him (he's a sophomore in high school), he looks at me sideways and says, "C'mon be real, a female coach?" Even after trying to explain the many benefits of having the best and most knowlegeable coaches coach you, it comes down to what fits into today's society and stereotypical biases. This is something that I have seen very little progress, if any, over the last couple of decades.

MASoccer
08-18-2007, 08:55 AM
FYI, this past year out of the fourteen coaches on the girls ODP side, only 4 of the 12 coaches were female. None on the boys side.

1994
Girls Head Coach
Laura Ray
Girls Asst. Coach
Lisa Dakin
Girls Asst. Coach
John Frederick

1993
Girls Head Coach
Krista Fulton
Girls Asst. Coach
Paul Vasconcelos
Girls Asst. Coach
David Suvak

1992
Girls Head Coach
Darren Marshall
Girls Asst. Coach
Humberto Calle

1991
Girls Head Coach
Jennifer Goff
Girls Asst. Coach
Mike Carney

1990
Girls Head Coach
Robert Sprague
Girls Asst. Coach
Tom Newell

MASC
08-19-2007, 10:12 PM
As far as my daughter is concerned, the sex o fthe coach made no difference. It was a personality thing.

She wants coaches who push her to be her best, not cheerleaders. Her U11 through U14 town coach was a man who was one of the best coaches that I have ever seen. He pushed her very hard. More than I would ever have thought possible. She has immense respect for him.

On her club teams she had multiple coaches sometimes a male head coach with female assistants, other times female head coaches with male and/or female assitants. The women were uniformly very qualified and did an excellent job motivating and treaching the players.

The same question can be asked about women as referees. Why is there such disparity in numbers between qualified referees?

08-20-2007, 09:22 AM
I think in the next ten years you are going to see a new crop of female coaches. I believe there are far more male coaches that understand how to coach girls, than there are female coaches that understand how to coach boys. That will change as the girls going into college now have a much deeper understanding of the game, both on and off the pitch. I've seen some college players working at camps that will become great coaches someday.

08-20-2007, 12:56 PM
My daughter played for one female coach. She seemed more concerned about being buddies to the girls then teaching them how to play soccer. She let the kids run the practices. The parents grew increasingly frustrated as the team lost every game fall and spring.

Red99
08-27-2007, 09:49 AM
From Time Magazine:

Where Are the Women Coaches?

Thursday, Aug. 16, 2007 By SEAN GREGORY

If you're a young woman looking for a coaching job, dreaming of winning a college championship, be sure to talk first with Dena Evans. Her stint as coach of Stanford's top-flight women's cross-country team was anything but glamorous. During meets, she would roam the sidelines of cold Midwestern towns and between races breast-feed her baby beneath a tree. She spent team van rides stressed out, wondering if her child's wails were ruining her runners' concentration. Because her husband traveled frequently for work, she often couldn't leave the kids with him. "We're not like Posh and Becks with the nanny and the private jet," she says. Two years ago, despite having won a national championship, Evans left the field.

Too many women are following Evans out the locker-room door. Lost in the recent tidal wave of praise surrounding the 35th anniversary of Title IX, the federal legislation that spawned an explosion in the number of women and girls participating in interscholastic sports, is a disturbing statistic: only 42% of women's college teams are led by a female head coach--the lowest level ever, according to a recent study by two retired Brooklyn College professors. In 1972, the year Title IX outlawed gender discrimination in school sports and any other federally funded education program, that proportion was higher than 90%. The trend has even carried over to the pros. When the WNBA started in 1997, seven of its eight head coaches were women. Now nine of its 13 coaches are men. "Just as opportunities are opening up for women coaches, [these jobs] seem to be escaping them," says NCAA president Myles Brand. "It's ironic, even a bit cruel."

What's driving the decline? Evans' work-life dilemma is a good place to start. As a result of Title IX's success, women coaches are expected to win as much as the men. With those expectations come crippling hours, including weekends spent on the road recruiting. That puts unique pressure on women with families, who, since they are less likely to find a spouse ready to back-burner a career to raise the kids, may have more trouble than their male counterparts in making child-care arrangements.

To stay in the game, some coaches have to take desperate steps. Karen Tessmer, women's basketball head coach at Massachusetts' Worcester State College, a Division III program, ran practices while her infant daughter was strapped on her back. "I couldn't go out and demonstrate a jump shot like I used to, but I could still walk through plays," she says of coaching with a backpack baby. Tessmer insists the arrangement was more hazardous to her than to her daughter. "She pulled my whistle back a bunch of times and almost choked me," she says.

High-profile, time-consuming coaching jobs can also strain marital relationships. "It takes a remarkable man in this day and age to be married to a successful female coach," says University of Georgia gymnastics coach Suzanne Yoculan, whose championship drive (she has won eight national titles) contributed to a divorce. "The expectations are so much higher for women now," she says. "We wanted this. You have to watch what you wish for."

Men also have more incentive now to go after women's coaching positions. "With the addition of funding and notoriety in women's sports, these jobs are very appealing for men," says University of Arizona softball coach Mike Candrea, who has won eight national titles with the Wildcats. For men seeking these spots, it doesn't hurt that 80% of college athletic directors are male. Says Brand: "Breaking the old-boys'-club bias is very difficult."

Although it's easy to minimize the impact of the women's coaching shortage--for example, fathers often introduce young girls to sports and remain active in their athletic development, so many female college players say they prefer playing for a male coach--here's why we shouldn't: most student athletes spend more time with their coach than with any other adult at school. Many coaches wield enormous influence on campus and in their communities. So what message is being sent to young women when men fill most of these leadership roles? "Their own expectations, their own aspirations are limited and distorted as a result," says Marcia Greenberger, a co-president of the National Women's Law Center.

Addressing the shortfall won't be easy. Ultimately, it will be up to individual schools to provide family-friendly benefits like off-season flex time. But will the athletic directors spend that last dollar on day care for a female coach or a shiny new locker for the football team? Will they actively recruit a woman coach as hard as they do a man? "The most important thing to my athletic director is the Directors' Cup," Yoculan says of the award given to the school with the best overall athletic performance in both men's and women's sports. "You win that by winning national titles. You don't win it by how many women coaches you have." Thanks to Title IX, women have a bigger stake in college athletics. Just don't count on them to call the plays.

08-27-2007, 10:02 AM
(Red again) --

there is also a graph in the magazine article showing that from 1980 thru present, the percentage of female head coaches for college women's soccer teams has remained somewhat steady at around 30% (with in fact a bit of decline since the 80's), while the percentage of colleges offering the sport to women has sharply increased from near 0 in 1978 to a current high of 89%.

08-27-2007, 10:19 AM
Another interesting take on this is how many female coaches coach boy's teams? On rare occasion I have seen a female coach on teams my sons have played against. I believe that every time this has happened the level of play is more recreational (indoor leagues, summer high school league, 3V3, etc.) We certainly see a large amount of men coaching girl's teams by why is the reverse not as apparent? I know for my sons (sadly) it is about typical stereotypes that foster themselves in young men. Many years ago I remember asking my younger son if he would like to be coached by Mia Hamm. His response was, "Duh, of course I would she's the best!" Now when I ask him (he's a sophomore in high school), he looks at me sideways and says, "C'mon be real, a female coach?" Even after trying to explain the many benefits of having the best and most knowlegeable coaches coach you, it comes down to what fits into today's society and stereotypical biases. This is something that I have seen very little progress, if any, over the last couple of decades.

And did you reinforce the stereotype by ignoring it, or work to break it down with him?

MASoccer
08-27-2007, 03:02 PM
Another interesting take on this is how many female coaches coach boy's teams? On rare occasion I have seen a female coach on teams my sons have played against. I believe that every time this has happened the level of play is more recreational (indoor leagues, summer high school league, 3V3, etc.) We certainly see a large amount of men coaching girl's teams by why is the reverse not as apparent? I know for my sons (sadly) it is about typical stereotypes that foster themselves in young men. Many years ago I remember asking my younger son if he would like to be coached by Mia Hamm. His response was, "Duh, of course I would she's the best!" Now when I ask him (he's a sophomore in high school), he looks at me sideways and says, "C'mon be real, a female coach?" Even after trying to explain the many benefits of having the best and most knowlegeable coaches coach you, it comes down to what fits into today's society and stereotypical biases. This is something that I have seen very little progress, if any, over the last couple of decades.

And did you reinforce the stereotype by ignoring it, or work to break it down with him?

Absolutely! This has been a point of discussion for both of my sons and myself on many occasions. I see many great coaches that are female and many bad coaches that are male. As a parent I want my sons to get the most out of their athletic experience regardless of what gender the coach is. I use every opportunity to point out the exceptional coaches/ atheletes regardless what gender they are. I love to be able to tell him about NBA player Reggie Miller was once referred to as "Cheryl's younger brother". It's hard, however, to overcome the stereotypes and gender roles that play out in society.

An example of this is at my younger son's school where there is a female teacher with extensive soccer experience as both a coach and player (played for a DII college team that went to the final four twice!) She doesn't coach any of the high school teams (girls, boys varsity or j.v.) at my younger son's school. Apparently she had approached the AD when she was hired to see if she could at least assist, but he explained to her that the positions were already filled by veteran coaches. These coaches for both girls and boys are males with little to no experience. Yes, they've been coaching high school for many years but from what I've seen have little knowledge of how the game should be played. The boy's coach is a former hockey player (no offense Cujo) and the girls' coach is a Dad that has been coaching on the town level for fifteen years. He's had four daughters play for the high school with the youngest one just starting her junior year. For both of these coaches it's all kick and run with no passing game, whatsoever. Both goalies are told not to do their own goal kicks (kicked by the sweeper) and the games spend most of the time ping ponging back and forth between the two goalies with no real touches in between. It's too bad, this female coach wasn't able to provide some input, she could offer a lot to a program that needs a definate lift.

08-27-2007, 03:27 PM
In this area, it looks like most of the best female coachs are coaching at the college level. I wish the clubs would do a better job of recruiting high level female coaches. I wonder if this is because the male coaching directors would feel threatened if they hired a top female coach?