Celtics Coach Brad Stevens on Why Positive Coaching is Powerful

Celtics coach Brad Stevens on the need for coaches to be “warm and demanding.”

In this video, Stevens explains that positive coaching is not “rah and yay” and cites research that indicates “the best leaders are warm and demanding.” He suggests that coaches be approachable for players who need to explore challenges on the court or off, but once “between the lines” have an understanding that excellence is expected.

He specifies that those demands not be delivered in a demanding manner, though recognizes that the competitive nature of sports can bring out negative emotions. When that happens, it is important to quickly re-center and reassure players that even while operation at a high level is a must, coaches still understand that players are human.


Positive Coaching Alliance develops BETTER ATHLETES, BETTER PEOPLE through resources for youth and high school sports coaches, parents, administrators and student-athletes. In addition to 1,000+ free audio-video and printable tips and tools at PCADevZone.org, PCA has partnered with roughly 3,000 schools and youth sports organizations nationwide to deliver live group workshops, online courses and books that help those involved in youth and high school sports create a positive, character-building youth sports culture.

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