A thread started on Volley Talk a while back on the subject of preferred coaching gender. It’s a bit unclear if it was meant to refer to whether players prefer male or female coaches or whether those in the hiring process lean one way or the other (women in volleyball coaching is a fairly continuous discussion US coaching circles). The respondents seem to go in both directions. I want to flip things around a bit and ask the following question from a coaching perspective:

Do you prefer to coach male or female players/teams?

If you asked me that question when I first got into the sport I would have said male without hesitation. That changed a long while back, though. These days I would say female before you even got the question completely out.

This is not to say I won’t coach male players or that I haven’t had success doing so. I’ve actually had good success coaching guys. I just prefer the dynamic I have with female players. I find it more rewarding.

What about you? Have a clear preference?

By the way, a great book on the differences in working with the two genders is Kathy DeBoer’s book Gender and Competition. Also check out this post for additional discussion of the differences.

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John Forman
John Forman

John is currently the Talent Strategy Manager (oversees the national teams) and Indoor Performance Director for Volleyball England, as well as Global Director for Volleyball for Nation Academy. His volleyball coaching experience includes all three NCAA divisions, plus Junior College, in the US; university and club teams in the UK; professional coaching in Sweden; and both coaching and club management at the Juniors level. He's also been a visiting coach at national team, professional club, and juniors programs in several countries. Learn more on his bio page.

Please share your own ideas and opinions.