Verb - Express warm approval or admiration of.

Noun - the expression of warm approval or admiration for someone or something.

Praise can have many varying results to any athlete. If a player has been denied any recognition, praise can be a stimulus that produces greater productivity and a feeling of team unity. On the other hand, praise has also take a player beyond self-confidence into an attitude of self-centeredness and individuality. Coaches and players alike, must use wisdom in determining the amount of praise to be given or even withheld.

Is praise a gesture of encouragement or an acknowledgement of achievement? Obviously, those who do well are easiest to praise. A game well played by individuals or a team should be commended. But, if improvement does not result in victory, how do we as coaches and teammates address that? If you or your team is still losing by narrow margins , praise could help in continued growth of self worth and effort.

In a television interview, Coach Lou Holtz was asked if he has ever given his team a "tongue lashing" for poor performance. His answer was, "Now is not the time to do it. We are struggling, not playing well. I'm not going to kick 'em while they're down!"

The person who is playing great is not always an a winning team. Yet he or she deserves praise just as much as anyone. Don't join the critics and fans in negative comments, but acknowledge good play and sportsmanship even though it does not always produce a championship.


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