Domagoj Sojčić

Coach from your childhood?

I changed a lot of sports and even more coaches in my childhood. Each influenced me in their way, and I would single out Professor Lovro Manestar, because of whom I fell in love with sports. 

The most important coaching virtues?

At the youngest ages, I would prefer the relaxation, patience, cheerfulness and ability of the coach to bring the children together.

Later, leadership and commitment would prevail, but what makes the difference is that your work is a reward, not a punishment.

What is the most useful of the traditional methods of handball coaching, and what of Handball Education?

With traditional methods, we are quicker to win and the world sees a well-mannered, obedient and trained team. There are no shortcuts in handball education and often the whole process seems chaotic to the average observer. The consequences of this process are thinking, independent decision making, and children do not create a false image of themselves. 

It is interesting how the “faster” traditional methods were created in a time of much slower flow of information and worked perfectly back then. Today, when information goes around the world with one click, a “slower” handball education may serve as a balance to our haste.

Experience in working with children in school and in a club?

School and sports are a reflection of their era and the mirror of society. Our school system was created in an industrial age when a lot of labour was needed. With today’s technological advancements, the school should be a place where we learn social skills, manage emotions, and foster creativity. If we find a balance between competitive and recreational, the sport facilitates everything listed.

What questions would you ask?

What are our goals?

What are our values?

Are we creating world champions at the age of 12 or healthy, responsible and functional adults who will positively impact the social community?

Professor of kinesiology, Faculty of Kinesiology, University of Zagreb