Classroom Sessions

Apr 15, 2019

Do teams need classroom time to be successful?

Almost 90% of our hosted Lead ‘Em Up sessions now take place in a classroom, a contrast to our early years when most sessions were done on court, on the field or in a locker room.

The classroom is the ideal environment conducive for learning and thinking; both required for leadership development.

What happens when sessions are held in classrooms?

There’s something special when you take your team off the field or court and bring them in the classroom.  Very similar to a coach desiring to have a “different voice” speak to the team, going into a classroom can offer a different perspective and get players into a different mindset.

In the classroom players expect to be taught, they prepare themselves to learn.

Teams all over the country are incorporating weekly classroom sessions with their team, and considering their time in the classroom as important as their on-court/on-field time.

“Over the last three seasons others coaches have remarked how our team is the most poised they have played. That poise comes from our weekly classroom sessions where we intentionally work on our character and leadership. Our players have grown and developed. It’s no coincidence the last three years have also been our most successful on the field as well.” Eric Sutz (Varsity Softball Coach – Port Washington High School).

The classroom sessions being referred to aren’t designed for “coaching” (watching film, installing new plays) but rather “teaching.” Teaching our players how to develop as leaders, engage them in a deeper level of focus, building stronger connections with teammates, incorporating higher levels of self-discipline and become more self-aware.

What has the feedback been?

“Based on feedback from current and graduating players, our classroom sessions have helped them learn the importance of the mental side of sports and being a leader. We’ve had a knack the last few seasons of being able to come back from large deficits and I definitely feel our classroom sessions have helped us be able to handle the adversity and show resilience.” Sean Dooley, Varsity Boys Basketball, Port Washington High School)

No coach will argue against the importance of developing leaders and building the mental side of the game. Understanding players do the best with what they know, therefore if we want them to know these things, teaching them in the best learning environment, makes the most sense.

What do classroom sessions look like?

Here’s how many teams are incorporating a classroom session with their teams:

  • Commit 30-45 minutes every week to a Classroom Session, all-season long.
  • Most teams around the country we’ve talked with use the drills, exercises and lessons, provided to them from the Lead ‘Em Up program for about 75% of the sessions.
  • The remaining 25% is comprised of various topics, discussions or content found by the coach.  This content can consist of listening to a podcast together, watching a YouTube video, reading an excerpt of a book or having a relevant discussion on something taking place in or outside of the team.
  • They occasionally give opportunities for players to lead portions of the classroom sessions to help empower them. They’ll prepare the player in advance and give them a portion of the session to lead a conversation, discussion, convicting thought, etc.
  • Oftentimes the classroom sessions are the responsibility of a specific coach to lead this portion of the team. Just like a coach may take offense, one takes defense… often one takes the lead for the classroom sessions.

Could your team benefit from weekly classroom sessions?

It could be the exact thing that takes your players and program to the next level.


Are you new to Lead ‘Em Up?  We provide teams leadership drills and exercises they can use to turn their players into the leaders needed to win.  

Interested in giving it a try?  Sign-up to receive three FREE Lead ‘Em Up exercises by clicking HERE.

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