Ian Goldberg is the Founder and CEO of iSport360, a SportsTech company that is helping 12,000 coaches, parents and kids set goals, share player feedback and track player development….all so our kids can have more success, more confidence and more fun. Try iSport360 for free here.
Who hates tryout season more than sport parents? Well actually, the coaches. And who stresses about tryout season more than the coaches? Unfortunately, our kids. So why has tryout season become the most terrible time of year?
Well it really comes down to three reasons, and our kids carry the burden:
- First, is the commercialization of youth sports…regardless of what sports your kids play, several towns, teams, clubs and academies are competing for your dollars (notice I said competing for your “dollars”, not for your “kids”).
- Second, is the lack of communication by the people organizing tryouts. It sure would take a lot of pressure off our kids’ shoulders if they got some clear communication saying what the evaluators will be looking for at tryouts. It would be a HUGE step up from the current state of affairs where kids and their nervous parents try to guess what’s in store at the tryout.
- Last, is the lack of consistent and fair methods for evaluating the players. Every team, club, academy, township I speak to has a different method. Outside evaluators are fair, but don’t really get to know the players well-enough in a 90-minute tryout. Coach evaluators know the players but may have biases. And in both cases there is no consistent criteria or objective scoring system from one evaluator to the next.
As a sports parent and coach, I got so fed up with tryout season that I actually changed careers and started a company to fix the problem. And now, iSport360 has a new feature that brings humanity to tryouts:
- First, our app provides coaches with 10 well-defined, age- and gender-specific goals for his/her players which can be emailed to all parents on the tryout roster in advance. Can you imagine how stress levels and emotions subside when parents and players know EXACTLY what the evaluators will be looking for?
- Second, our app provides an objective player assessment tool that evaluators can use on the sidelines. This mobile assessment tool, which is based on the 10 goals, brings consistency, objectivity and fairness to the process regardless of who is evaluating the players.
- Last, our app provides a rating report for the coach that ranks players based on their overall scores or can be sorted by any sub-category score (such as technical skills, tactical skills, physical skills or life skills).
I’ve spent years researching this problem and it is felt from North-to-South and coast-to-coast (it’s also a problem in places like the UK, Israel, India, Japan, South Korea and Canada). So if you are terrorized by Tryout Season, please get your team on iSport360 and join our community of progressive sports parents and coaches.