REMEMBER: Players need to know that you care about them. Your role demands a strong sense of responsibility for mentoring and teaching skills beyond the game on the ice. You’re also in a unique position to educate your players that mental health challenges can affect anyone, and to encourage them to keep a supportive eye out for each other. Coaches are only as important as the team decides they are.
Green is the colour of mental health. The experiential act of taping a stick in the dressing room and listening to a coach deliver a mental health message can be powerful. Please feel free to tailor the chat for your age group and share some of yours or your coaching staffs personal experiences. For younger players (Novice and younger) this message can be a simple one about teamwork and remaining “positive” with the green tape being symbolic of that. For older teams you can get more in depth with a focus on the message, resources, and taping in the dressing room. Hockey players can be creatures of habit, it is understood that some high level players may want to minimize the green tape they use.
Use the Coaches Notes below as a guide. Feel free to use your own words and share some of yours or your coaching staffs personal experiences with mental health. Choose whatever time you feel works best for your team to deliver this message.