We are actually coaching Generation Z Jul 1, 2019 23:59:59 GMT -6 bighit65, Victor, and 1 more like this
Post by somecoach on Jul 1, 2019 23:59:59 GMT -6
Rather then derailing the "war on football" thread I think this should be a standalone topic.
I hear too many coaches (and adults in general) complaining about "these damn millennial kids" ... when in reality we are already up to Generation Z. This thread is to start a conversation about the differences between the two.
So I decided to type out the following rant to help us understand our Gen-Z players a little better:
The lines between the generations are a highly debated topic... but a good rule of thumb is Millennial= 1981-1996
Gen Z is 1997-2010
A freshman in highschool for the 2019-2020 school year was born in the year 2005, thus we are well within the Gen Z range.
Being on the (very) latter end of the Millennial spectrum, I have a very unique perspective on the difference between the two generations.
Believe it or not, us Millennials remember a world where there was either no internet, or a very limited one that would not be able to replace social interaction during the childhood years to the extent it does now.
I witnessed first hand the shift of this paradigm in my own childhood.
When I was in elementary school we had the older kids (Late Elementary to Middle Schoolers) on the block who would roam the neighborhood and "run shop" (not at all in a criminal way
At some point in our childhoods our parents would see us enjoying a game of street football/wiffleball and sign us up for football/baseball because we ENJOYED playing "sandlot ball".
Even though we all had Playstation 1&2, The original Xbox, and the N64/Gamecube, these systems did not have the online access that we enjoy today, thus even playing video games against an human opponent required the social interaction of getting a friend to come over.
Thus although (some) of us later millenials had the "helicopter" Gen X parents that would take their kids to the doctor if they had a scraped knee, we did in fact enjoy the experience of "playing outside".
Fast forward to my middle school years we had the advent of "online gaming" in which the Xbox 360, PS3 and Nintendo Wii came out. These systems would allow us to play with and/or against another human player without being in the same room, or even the same country!
At this point it was my turn to be "the older kid on the block" but sadly the only one's who were outside "playing ball" were us Millenials... this is due to the fact that in the prime time of playing outside as a young kid, the Gen-Z kids had the option of getting their daily dose of social interaction via the internet.
Fast forward to when I "aged-out" of playing outside and went on to play highschool football (obviously)... the next crop of kids had no older kids on the block to play with as they were pre-occupied with online gaming. Thus they followed suit.
Much of this didn't occur to me until I started driving, because I honestly can't remember the last time I was driving down a street and having the neighbor hood kids clear out whatever game they were playing at the shout of "car!" to make room for my car; yet in my memories I remember having to yell that out atleast 10x per afternoon
These kids did not have the "older kids" to guide them as they were preoccupied playing online video games.\
Much of these kids also have Gen X/ Early Millenial "Lawn Mower" parents whom, like a lawnmower knock every obstacle down infront of the child, which would stop them from facing ANY adversitry, hence why we see the prevalnce of the "transfer portal" culture. You know the type "Why is my kid not playing position X" ... 'Because they aren't the best X on the team' "That's it I am pulling little Johnny out", as opposed to going home and telling the kid to get better at position Y/ out work the others to become position X.
... with all this being said, when we are addressing our players going forward, we should keep in the back of our minds that:
- They aren't used to the "go play outside" culture
- majority of their "sports" only existed in a league setting
- We are competing with mobile FREEmium games such as Fortnite in which it is free to play, easy to learn, and allows them instant gratiffication
How do I suggest to combat this?
- Shorter choppier sentences for coaching points because they lose you after the 5th word.
- Visual learning as opposed to Verbal learning as they tend to lose you after the 5th word.
- Overall give them that sense that they are "Alpha" for participating in football as opposed to their peers who will go on to smoke vapes, become overweight, and play video games all hours of the non-school day.
- With the "lawn mower" parenting these kids get, the 4 years they have with your may be the only hurdles they have to jump before the real world. So make sure you develop them as men and prepare them the best you can for their future... because that's what this profession is all about!
...Not to go down the next rabbit hole, but with the advent of the iphone circa 2008, Generation Alpha (2010-2025) should be an interesting case. Many of these kids have been addicted to screens since the age of 7 and due to bad parenting have been arguably "raised by screens". I am terrified to think in my life time there will be a point where majority of the population rather watch "Let's Plays"/E-sports then our beloved game of football. However, I think the novelty of Superbowl Sunday
If you made it this far, thanks for reading and I hope this possibly cleared some WTF moments up when trying to rationalize what goes through your players head.