It’s About the Athletes not the Coaches

Mash Mafia Family

I’m on the bus headed back home with Team MDUSA after an amazing weekend at the American Open. Team MDUSA and my Mash Mafia Team combined for 9 Gold Medals, 6 Silver Medals, and 4 Bronze Medals. Team MDUSA won the Team Championship for the Men, and the women received Second Place in a close battle. It was the most thrilling weekend of my coaching career. Coach McCauley, Coach Pendlay, and I make a really good team that I am excited to be a part of for a very long time.

I was going to write about the whole experience, but there is something more important that comes to mind first. Lately, I have noticed that a lot of coaches think that this whole thing is about them. It’s not! Normally I try to stay out of opinion type matters, but this is important to me. I love my athletes, and they deserve a coach that loves them. If your main purpose in coaching someone is to get credit for his or her accomplishments, then you are in the wrong profession.

Now I love it when my athletes win medals and qualify for teams, but I also love it when an athlete simply PRs. Mainly I just love helping people reach their own specific goals. It’s an honor to walk someone through the process of athletic development. When Rebecca Gerdon was my athlete at the Mash Mafia Compound, it was my idea for her to go the Team MDUSA. It was a better situation for her. Rebecca is like a daughter to me, so I didn’t want to see her go. It was just the right move for Rebecca to succeed.

Lately, I had a girl, whom I won’t mention her name; ask me to be her second coach at a National Meet. She already has a full-time coach and club, but just wanted a little extra help at the meet. Remember, I would get zero credit for her. Her existing coach would get it all, which was totally fine by me. Well when he heard about it, he literally blew his top and kicked her out of the gym. Can you believe that? This girl is going to be a top women’s lifter in the US, so I guess he thought that he might be losing control. How silly!

The crazy part is that I trained her online before she went to him. When she asked me if it was ok for her to train with someone locally, I told her to go for it. If there is a good coach locally, that will always be a better option. Once again, it was better for her, so I was all for it. I didn’t get upset at all because I am a coach that cares more about the lifter than myself.

Another one of my lifters was kicked out of her club because she was doing my program. He didn’t like the fact that she was getting better from a program that was different than his own. She lifted there a month, and he told her that it was totally fine. Then out of the blue he kicks her out forever. He didn’t try to work with her at all. He could have told her that it was upsetting him, and given her the option to follow his plan. However, his pride overrode his brain, and he made an emotional decision.

It’s no wonder that I had three athletes in the American Open last year, and now this year I had around 30. Yes I believe that I have more knowledge than a lot of coaches out there, and I have a lot of experience to pass on to athletes. The biggest quality that makes me a good coach is my love for my athletes. That is the secret to growing a bigger club. If you care about your athletes, your program will grow. Here is my list of characteristics for a top-level coach:

1. Love your athletes more than yourself!
2. Always seek to improve the environment of your athletes!
3. Have a solid base of knowledge that matches the athletes that you are working with.
4. Always strive to improve your level of knowledge!
5. It always helps to have experience in the filed that you are teaching!

These qualities are in order. If you don’t get the first one, the others don’t matter. There are a lot of coaches out there that do care, and they are qualified. As an athlete you need to do your own homework before choosing your coach. It’s a decision that will be very important to your career as an athlete. Your peak years are numbered. Any wasted years are years that you will never get back.

Coaches remember that your time as an athlete has come and gone. Don’t ruin the only time in your athlete’s life to excel because of your pride. Instead, strive to make their time as an athlete better than your own. It’s a privilege to lead young people in their athletic journeys. A coach should strive to be a worthy steward of that honor!

These are my words to my athletes, the athletes around the world, and all coaches out there!


Coach Mash

Christmas Specials:

$50 off Online Coaching with Coach Mash use Coupon Code: MASHCOACHING

$50 off my Learn 2 Lift Seminar January 20th at the Mash Compound use Coupon Code: MASHSEMINAR

20% off all Apparel including the “I Do What I Want” T-Shirt use Coupon Code: MASHELITE

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We are hosting a Holiday Olympic Weightlifting Meet December 20th at the Mash Mafia Compound. Come hangout with the Mash Mafia Crew, some MDUSA Stars, Coach Mash, slam some bars, and of course KILL Some PRs! Click on the link to find out more:

December 20th Meet at the Mash Mafia Compound

We are hosting a New Year Learn 2 Lift Seminar at the Compound as well! January 10th and 11th come out and hang with Coach Mash and the Mash Mafia. Weightlifting Day 1 and Powerlifting Day 2. Come to one or both days just click on the link to find out more:

New Year Learn 2 Lift at the Mash Mafia Compound

To check out one of the Online Teams, click on one of the following on links:

Eat What You Want! Lift What You Want!

Online Coaching and Mentoring with Coach Mash

Mash Mafia Online Team

Or if you are interested in hosting a Learn 2 Lift Seminar on the topics of Olympic Weightlifting, Powerlifting, Athletic Performance, and/or Eat What You Want Nutrition email me at:

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