Hansen on hating losing

The Herald reports:

Kids need to be taught the joy of winning and the pain of losing.

That’s the message from World Cup-winning coach Steve Hansen in a wide-ranging interview with the Herald.

The All Blacks coach believes coaching took a wrong turn when emphasis was changed from winning to participating.

Let alone when kids now don’t even get told the score!

He believes his hatred of losing is his greatest strength and greatest weakness as a coach, and as he has grown to accept losing as an inevitable byproduct of competitive sport, he has become better at his job.

“The fact I hate it so much, I’ve got to learn to control it. There’s no point having a hissy-fit just because you’ve lost, but it doesn’t mean you just accept it,” Hansen said.

“There are so many things you can learn when you lose if you’re open to it.

“At the same time you’ve got to have that huge love of winning that can motivate you to make sure you don’t lose too often but you can’t allow that to overshadow the process of how you win.

“That’s the most important thing in sport.”

Hansen believed that it was unnatural to minimise the importance of competition when coaching kids.

“Where we got it wrong a number of years ago was when we said winning was not important.

“You ask any kid from the age of 10. Whether it’s rugby or two kids playing marbles, they want to win, that’s a natural instinct,” Hansen said.

It’s very natural. You can teach to be a gracious winner and an accepting loser, but that’s different from teaching that winning isn’t important.

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