Missouri Institute for Positive Coaching Holds First Annual Workshop

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COLUMBIA - The Missouri Institute for Positive Learning held its first annual "Positive Coaching Workshop" Monday at MU's Memorial Union. Athletic coaches from across the nation met to discuss ways to translate negative coaching into positive mentoring.

Dr. Rick McGuire orchestrated the event and said he hopes positive coaching will extend across the state of Missouri.

"We're promoting the notion of every school can be a positive coaching school," McGuire said. "I'd love to hang a banner in our school colors and say 'we are proud to a positive coaching school.'" 

He said promoting positive coaching is important because many kids are bullied by their coaches. 

"Negative coaching is just another form of bully behavior," McGuire said. 

Eldon High School Athletic Director Colleen Abbott said she wants to see positive coaching implemented at her school because she knows kids invest a lot of time in their sports. 

"As a leader, I feel like if you're going to ask people to do something and give up their time, you need to make sure that it's something that's good," Abbott said. "And also just how to implement it not only with coaches, but how can I also impact our students in my leadership position."

Military veteran Christopher Larsen said he can see "positive coaching" expand beyond athletics. 

"Positive coaching, I would argue, has far bigger implications than just sports alone," Larsen said. "It has implications for good parenting and good leadership, whether it's business or government." 

The workshops will continue through Wednesday. McGuire said he hopes to get more schools involved on a national level.