Team chemistry is one of the most important factors in determining the success of your team. Having the most talented players does not matter if they refuse to get along, sacrifice and play as a team. Chemistry happens naturally over time with teammates, but you can help it along with successful team building activities.
Choose captains that are going to bring the team together. Teams often follow the attitude of their captains, so it is important that your captains are enthusiastic leaders and unselfish players. If they put themselves before the team, the team will follow.
Include some time in practice dedicated to team building. Conditioning athletes by using games and contests makes it more fun for them and helps them bring out the best in each other. When they push each other in practice, they will push each other in games.
Have a positive attitude. Remind players that they need to compliment and congratulate each other on their successes and support each other during their failures. A team whose members blame each other when things go wrong will never succeed through adversity.
Spending time together away from the field is an excellent way to build team chemistry. Go to a professional or college game together as a team. Have a barbeque or party at a teammate’s house. Attending an early-season tournament is a good way for teams to bond. All the hours spent sitting together in the hotel pool and lobby helps build camaraderie.
Forbid hazing rituals. These so-called “team building” activities are harmful, dangerous and potentially illegal. Hazing causes animosity between younger and older players. Coaches and captains have a responsibility to make sure that younger players are safe and that hazing does not occur.