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Joe Ehrmann On Life Lessons Through Sports

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Joe Ehrmann (@JoeEhrmann76), a PCA National Advisory Board Member and winner of PCA's Ronald L. Jensen Award for Lifetime Achievement, is a former NFL Pro Bowl defensive lineman, founder of Coach For America and author of InSide Out Coaching. Ehrmann gained additional prominence when Parade Magazine dubbed him “the most important coach in America” for his unorthodox, but highly effective, coaching at Gilman School in the Baltimore area. Ehrmann was also the subject of Season of Life by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Jeffrey Marx.

One of the greatest outcomes of children playing sports is their ability to learn life lessons. Joe Ehrmann believes that kids can learn just about any life lesson through sports, including how to develop relationships, how to depend on teammates and how to make a commitment. All of these are critical to successful interpersonal skills throughout the rest of their lives. It’s also important for kids to feel a part of something bigger than themselves through their commitment to a sport, because it teaches them important perspective.

Sports also provide a platform to learn victory and defeat, which Ehrmann describes as “part of life’s course for every young person.” For kids to learn failure and success while playing a sport -- with the support of parents, coaches and teammates -- they will be better equipped emotionally to handle the ups and downs in life, an invaluable takeaway.