Coaching Journey a Memorable One for Ringette Dad, News (Oshawa Ringette)

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Coaching Journey a Memorable One for Ringette Dad
Submitted By Darryl Mathers on Wednesday, July 18, 2018
Colin Deans’ ringette experience began when his daughter, Hannah, started her first house league season with the Oshawa Storm Ringette Association (OSRA) at age five.

To that point, Deans’ exposure to the sport was limited to seeing the beginning or end of the odd practice, if it happened to bookend one of his hockey practices while he was growing up in Ajax.

As Hannah, and later sister Farrah, began their respective journeys with the OSRA, Deans learned the game by helping out on the bench during house league games and on the ice as a helper at practices.

“Frankly, I knew very little,” says Deans of his early days as a ringette Dad. “I don't recall ever seeing a game. That said, once you see the game, you get hooked.”

Despite his unfamiliarity with the sport, Deans had little reservations about getting involved in a leadership position.

“The reason I decided to coach was because it was an opportunity to do something exciting with my kids,” he says. “It provides a sense of community, responsibility and growth.” 

As his daughters grew and rose through the association, Deans’ role also increased, eventually becoming a head coach. With no ringette playing experience, he became a student of the game.

“I watched and learned as much as I could,” says Deans, who is the head coach of the Oshawa Storm U19 A for the 2018-19 season. “I would talk a lot to those coaches that were still in the sport and I got on the ice with them as much as I could.  I learned from them.  I talked the sport with them.”

During his time behind the bench Deans says he hasn’t had the on-ice results many would associate with success. While he concedes he wished his teams would have posted a few more wins over the years, the scoreboard is not how he judges success.

“I don't yield the results that would qualify me as a successful coach, but when I judge what I'm doing outside of the lens of wins and losses and focus on player development, team comradery and emotional investment, then I believe I'm fulfilling the role.”

Now as a veteran coach in the sport, Deans strongly encourages parents to throw away any inhibitions and get involved, regardless of their level of ringette experience.

“You need to view your time coaching as progression over years,” he says. “There are going to be good times and difficult times. You are going to get feedback that you may not want to hear, but use that to grow and become a better coach.”
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Storm Spotlight tells the stories of players, coaches, parents and volunteers of the Oshawa Storm Ringette Association. Email [email protected] if you are interested in being featured in a future Storm Spotlight profile.

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