Though some people may disagree, the saying that kids who play video games are "throwing away valuable time" is no longer accurate. Esports has become a billion-dollar industry with immense opportunities for current and future generations of gamers. The likelihood of making a living as an esports professional, coach, or industry representative is now realistic instead of a childish fantasy.
As online gaming leagues remain unregulated and unmonitored, the serious problem of bad behavior by gamers is only getting worse. Women, minorities, and disabled gamers are especially harassed in these spaces. Some people in the gaming industry have tried to improve things by creating initiatives like an all-girl Valorant team or asking for ability-inclusive tournaments, but more needs to be done to protect young participants from mean or abusive players.
This is why esports coaching for young people is so important to the industry's success. Parents, schools, and large organizations are increasingly comfortable with investing in children's esports leagues that focus on developing skills like teamwork, communication, and strategy. Esports coaching helps train the next generation of gamers to embrace inclusion, fair play, and respect.
Esports players can become good role models for other kids, especially in our increasingly digital world. That's why youth coaching in esports is important. Let's take a look at the factors that are driving the need for it.
Why do people need esports coaching?
Several social and economic factors are causing the rise in popularity of esports coaching, both as a service market and a personal profession. A large amount of money to be made, professional leagues, and overall participation and viewership numbers are leading younger generations to see esports as a serious career path.
The industry is growing a lot.
The esports industry is doing better than traditional sports leagues like MLB and NBA. More young people are choosing to watch esports instead of traditional sports. Twitch and Discord are two platforms that help make this possible by giving people access to their favorite gamers. With all this popularity, there is more competition now too.
Similar to how each new generation of athletes always seems to surpass the skill level of the last, it's becoming increasingly difficult to compete in esports leagues. This can be quite discouraging for noobies/new players. However, with Esports coaching, less-experienced gamers can develop their skillset and build confidence.
How to address the toxic behavior
As esports coaching becomes more popular, it's important to model positive gaming interactions and behavior. Discrimination and harassment are still commonplace in the industry and, not only do they negatively impact participants' health, but they also contribute to the overall issue of toxic online behavior. Like social media platforms, anonymous gaming leagues give users a false sense of security which allows them to act without accountability. Coaching youth esports players helps to teach them values like inclusivity and respect, as well as providing the supervision needed to address any problems with conduct.
The growth of eSports is enabling more and more career choices
With the esports industry booming, there are more job openings for gamers than ever before. Some of these positions include:
- Marketing and PR
- Team Management
Coaching Esports coaches can have a significant impact on young gamers because they help expose them to different aspects of the industry and how vital communication is to team performance in diverse situations.
The Emergence of Children’s Esports Leagues
Parents and teachers who don't play video games themselves oftentimes struggle to help their children adequately progress in the gaming world. It can be anxiety-inducing letting kids explore online unsupervised, but that's where most of them do their gaming these days. Although programs focused on varsity and collegiate gamers are common, there is a much larger group of junior high and middle schoolers who need esports coaching.
Read more on how to coach your team to victory and how coaching can improve your team's performance.