Tag Archives: speaking

Speaking At The 2014 US Lacrosse National Convention

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Coach Lou Corsetti and I are speaking once again at the 2014 US Lacrosse National Convention! This will be Lou’s 15th time speaking and my second time.

Coach Lou is speaking to men’s coaches from 9-10AM on Sunday, January 12th on “Progressive Shooting that Becomes the Foundation Of Your Offense“. He’ll be on the demo field explaining how to run progressive shooting drills that encourage players to shoot and look for additional options if denied a good shooting opportunity. He is representing Atlanta Youth Lacrosse and the Riverwood High School Lacrosse Program.

Last year I spoke to youth coaches about getting players to effectively work together as a team. This year I am co-speaking with fellow officials trainer Greg Hite. We are speaking to adult officials about how to better train youth officials from 2-3PM on Saturday, January 11th in our presentation, “Training Youth Officials Without Making Their Heads Explode“. Greg and I are representing our work at Atlanta Lacrosse Official and the Georgia Lacrosse Officials Association.

We are both looking forward to seeing a lot of old friends in Philly, and making a bunch of new ones!

If I have the time I will try to do some live-blogging of the convention while we are up there.

Featured Image Credit – www.uslacrosse.org


Speaking With Conviction And Authority

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Ever since I was a kid I was told that I spoke like an adult. This observation has always confused me, but now that I am more of an adult it is making a little more sense. The more I interact with young kids, high schoolers and collegiate athletes the more I realize how most lack conviction and authority when they speak. The young kids I get, they have no reason or experience to have conviction or authority, but the young adults in high school and college, for the most part, lack those attributes when speaking.

This kills me as a coach and youth officials trainer. For every team I coach the only major thing I demand is that they are loud at practice and in games. It takes me a week or two, but I can generally get any player at any age to get louder than they were when they started. You can’t be timid or quiet on a lacrosse field and expect to get anywhere. My big problem is many of the players coming into lacrosse have spent most of their lives being told to pipe down. When they finally get the opportunity to speak up, they don’t know how.

I will let Taylor Mali, a fantastic poet, make his point about the importance of conviction and authority:

I don’t find it surprising that people consistently rank public speaking as a greater fear than death. Humans are social creatures and the fear of embarrassing ourselves in front of our peers or strangers can be downright terrifying. What I don’t get is why we let kids off the hook about how they talk. I took a public speaking class in middle school, and one teaching technique got rid of every student saying “um”. The teacher had one of us stand in front of the class and would hand us an index card with a topic on it. We never knew what the topic was, and that was the point. We had ten seconds to think about the topic and then we had to speak for five minutes on that topic.

Once the five minute clock started we had to talk continuously, but anytime we uttered “um”, “like”, and “you know” the teacher squirted us in the face with cold water from the spray bottle he held. I once had to speak about fermenting grapes into wine. I had no clue about how to ferment grapes and I got sprayed with water for the full five minutes. By the end of the school year most of us had gotten proficient at removing “um”, “like”, and “you know” from our public speaking vocabulary, but the interesting side effect was those phrases dropped out of our normal conversations as well.

I spend season after season teaching youth officials and youth players how to speak because no one teaches them how to find their own voice. And if they never learn to speak strongly with their own voice they will stand quietly on the field and watch those who can pass them by.


The 2013 US Lacrosse National Convention

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I am pleased to announce that my father, Lou Corsetti, and I will be speaking at the 2013 US Lacrosse National Convention! This is my Dad’s fourteen time speaking at the convention, but it is my very first and I am incredibly excited. Being selected as a presenter is a tremendous honor, and I am looking forward to representing Atlanta Youth Lacrosse at the convention.

So what in the world are we speaking about? My Dad’s presentation is entitled, “This Is Not Working – Changing Your Practice Without Changing Your Foundation.” He will be presenting on the Demo Field during the convention, which is a mini sprint-turf field used to demonstrate drills and plays for the coaches watching the presentation. Coach Lou decided on his topic after his 2012 Lacrosse season with the Riverwood Raiders. Shortly before the middle of the season he revamped all of his practice plans because the team was not performing up to the standards of the coaching staff. Mainly, the team could not pick up ground balls. So he went back to basics with multiple drills designed to improve his team’s ability to pick up ground balls, and by the end of the season they were decidedly a ground ball team.

My presentation is geared towards U9 and U11 coaches and is entitled, “Putting The ‘I’ In Team: Getting Individuals To Play For One Another.” The presentation will cover the following four topics:

  • Practice drills emphasizing the basics and more advanced drills that build upon those basics.
  • Set plays and formations that were successful in U11 games.
  • A coaching philosophy that can be applied to any U11 team.
  • Successfully managing parent expectations.

While I’ve coached many youth teams over the years, I decided to apply to speak at the convention following my summer spent as the head coach for the U11 Coyotes Team. I had a blast coaching this group of young players, but what got me truly excited was seeing how the players interacted with one another from the first game of the travel season to the last game. In our first game, players were still learning to trust their teammates to do their jobs on the field. By the end of our first tournament the team had gelled into one unit, and by the last game of the season they all knew their buddy had their back on and off the field. That meant more to me than any of the wins we earned during the summer.

As I’ve done over the past two years, I will be live-blogging the convention while I’m up in Philadelphia. So definitely stay tuned to the AYL Blog as we get closer to the convention.