Every team has had their little funks where there is so much drama going on and it takes away from practice. So what do you do? Even though every situation is different, there are some ways to help. Here are some tips to help improve your team unity:
1. Have an outside function – Just have an outside function to get away from the sport so that we can actually get to know everyone on a personal level rather than just a team member level.
2. Fun fundraiser – Do a fundraiser that everyone enjoys and works together. It can be as easy as a car wash or as more intense as a camp. Just do something that’s team oriented that will make money for the team and incorporate everyone working as a team. (Don’t do fundraisers like “Door to Door” selling, etc.)
3. Team building games – Make practice fun on a team level. Include team games rather than individual games, so that it forces the team to have fun and work together as a team.
4. Team drills – When running through warm-ups and drills; make sure they are doing it as a team. Things like running together, lining up together, and leaving together indirectly teaches everyone how important team unity is.
5. Team punishments – If someone makes a mistake, then it’s on the team to take on their punishment. It will not only force each person to obey by the rules by peer pressure but you will eventually have an improved team.
6. Improve communication – Make sure that the communication is clear between team members and coaches. Have stand ups or “open door policies” help alleviate confusion and opens the doors to better communication amongst the team including coaches.
7. Move people around – If you can try to change up the groups of team members. This will not only help with cliques among the team, but it will also serve as an opportunity for each member to get to know new people. Sometimes paring up senior members with newbies is a good practice as well.
8. Have seniors run practice – Sometimes it’s good to have the seniors run practice so that they can see how difficult it is to run practice, so that they can incorporate some of their ideas, for a change of pace, and it gives the coaches a break.
9. Change it up – Try changing this up once in awhile. It will make practice more interesting and will get everyone’s minds off of any drama that may or may not be occurring.