Coaches are vital in helping athletes learn all aspects of sport participation. We will often refer to the 14/16U Training to Train Stage as an opportunity to “build the engine” of an athlete. While it’s easy to predict that we want to physically prepare a player at this stage, it is also a perfect time to teach players the off-ice characteristics that can help an athlete as well. As hockey players continue to advance to these older age groups, we encourage coaches to teach athletes behaviors that are important for winning teams; For example, encouraging your teammates, always maintaining a positive attitude and being respectful to referees, coaches and staff, as well as your teammates. These qualities are important for young players to learn. This is the proper time to ‘coach’ this into your players. Players need to learn what it takes to be a good teammate. And while the coach can be extremely influential in preparing athletes, parents need to be supportive to both the coach and player to make this happen.