What Does a Sports Team Captain Do?

What Does a Sports Team Captain Do?

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What Does a Sports Team Captain Do?
By: Hector AlejandroCC BY 2.0

Can you guess what is one of the biggest reasons an athletic team may not reach their season goals? The answer is a lack of leadership. While the coach is in charge of the team, the captain is responsible for peer-to-peer leadership. The captain plays on the field with the teammates, unlike the captain on the sideline. That gives him an entirely different level of connection with his team.

A sports team captain is the impetus for dedication, drive, and motivation. The sports team captain also inspires his teammates to believe in themselves and in the team.

What a Sports Team Captain Does:

  • Assists the coach with tryouts, choosing teammates, and assigning player positions
  • Helps the coach share the schedules with everyone, especially any changes in the schedule
  • Acts as a role model for teammates by always staying motivated and being punctual to all practices
  • Ensures safety rules and guidelines are being followed at practice, games, and competitions
  • Helps the coach pick team uniforms, shoes, practice wear, accessories and other athletic gear
  • Contributes ideas for team events and fundraisers
  • Makes sure all sport supplies are available, functioning, and ready for practice

How Captains Are Picked:
Nominations, voting, or the coach’s decision are the most common ways for a captain to be selected.

Some sports teams will let teammates nominate captain candidates, and then either the whole team votes or the coach makes the final decision. This is a way that allows the coach to ensure that the captain is well-liked by his teammates and is considered by the team to already be a leader.

Some coaches will make the decision on their own. They will likely decide based on a variety of factors, including team seniority, skill level, and past performance. They might even hold auditions for captain that include a performance and/or an interview.

Why Captains Are Good for a Team:

  • Even if a coach is able to perform some of the skills the team is performing, the team captain is actually out there on the floor, court, or field performing and playing with them. This makes it easier for the captain to relate to his team.
  • Just like the rest of the team, sports team captains are trying to balance their schedules with school, social activities, and sports. They can better understand the stress that the other teammates face.
  • A sports team captain can unite a team as a peer role model, by being easy to connect with and approach for questions or concerns.
  • A sports team captain wears the team uniform during the games and competitions, meaning he can help a coach understand better about how a fabric or style may feel during game time
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