Coaching Association of Canada

Coach Q&A: Maurice Wilson

October 4, 2011

Maurice Wilson has coached for 30 years in various sports from fast-pitch softball at a national level, to basketball, soccer, track and field, cricket and ice hockey at a senior level. He is an NCCP Level 3 certified coach for curling and has coached 12 teams to the provincials and three to national finals.

The teams he has coached have won titles at the bantam provincials in 2001, juniors in 2003, and OUA and CIS in 2011. He was the recipient of the Asham Coaching Award in 2003 and 2004 for provincial accomplishments and was the CIS women’s curling coach of the year in 2011. Maurice is also very active in the curling community as a Trillium Camp high performance coach since 2006 and a provincial Learning Facilitator since 2005.

Coach’s Full name: Maurice Wilson

Province: Ontario

Sport(s): Curling

Coaching role: Women’s curling coach at Wilfrid Laurier University; Ontario Curling Association Learning Facilitator; high performance coach in Ontario. Elementary school teacher coaching soccer, basketball and track and field.

NCCP Status: Level 3 certified

What is your greatest coaching moment/achievement?
That’s a tough choice between several very important events. I’d have to say winning the OUA (Ontario University Athletics) and CIS (Canadian Interuniversity Sport) titles in 2011 and winning the 2003 Ontario Junior Championships are a tie. The 2003 championship was with my daughter, Lyndsey and she’d seriously hurt me if I didn’t include it.

What are three things you think every coach should know?

  1. Good preparation is all important.
  2. Attention to detail wins championships.
  3. The process is more important than the result if you’re striving for continuous success.

Why did you decide to become a coach?
I’ve been a coach or an instructor in various sports since my early 20s. I always felt a need to give back to the sport and my community. My parents raised me to believe that was necessary for personal fulfillment. I know at school, coaching is always the absolute best part of the day!!

How would your athletes describe your coaching style in three words?
“Patient -- Fire Within”. I hope the hyphen doesn’t count.

What is the most important thing you learned as part of your NCCP training?
Developing the athletes’ thinking process is critical and is central to my coaching philosophy. As a coach, learning to ask the right questions is a huge part of both team development and communication success. I use the NCCP Action Card to help athletes reflect on how they impact team performance. The “I will START/STOP/CONTINUE” concept can apply to everything from game strategy to team dynamics. The “What? So What? Now What?” model (from Coaching and Leading Effectively) is also extremely thought provoking and leads to brilliant warm side of the glass practices. It is tough to get the right answers without asking the right questions. These tools can make the difference in helping me identify what are the ‘right’ questions in a given situation.

Why is being a coach the best job in the world?
The excitement, the challenge, the creativity and the interaction with people that want to be the best they can be. What could be better?

Anything else you’d like to share?
A friend of mine in coaching often says: “Wisdom is simple. Just think of something stupid to say and don’t say it.” That is sometimes the most important lesson we learn as coaches. Experience is the best teacher.

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