RED DEER – Hockey Alberta’s Coach of the Month for December, sponsored by Players Bench Team Apparel, is Randal Thiessen of Edmonton.
Randal has been coaching for eight years in the Millwoods organization, and is currently the head coach of the U13 Millwoods Bruins MW503 and an assistant coach with the U7 Millwoods Polar Bears.
With a passion for teaching and a love of sports, it was a natural fit for Randal to begin coaching and developing youth in his community. His work has not gone unnoticed by the parents and players that he has impacted over his years as a coach.
"Randal has dedicated many years towards coaching minor hockey. He demonstrates a genuine passion for coaching children and displays a true essence of leadership amongst his coach team. These qualities are easily seen and sensed through the children’s enjoyment on the ice and the strides they make in their hockey development each year," said the parent who nominated Randal. "Randal also has excellent communication skills, both in positive and difficult situations, with the children, families and management team."
Described as the most rewarding task he has ever taken on, Randal has many coaching memories over his eight years. The times that stick out most, are the messages he receives from players at seasons end. The encouraging words that let him know he is making a difference and leaving an impression inspire him to come back and help each year.
"My philosophy is ever evolving as I continue to learn and as my players continue to challenge me. It begins on a foundation of respect through all aspects of the team. I expect a high level of compete that drives a player’s training and their gameplay by identifying small victories as building blocks to something greater," said Randal. "Hockey is way too fun to bog it down with negativity, so it’s important to take responsibility, learn, and adapt to the challenges."
The Coach of the Month award is presented every month during the Minor Hockey season, based on nominations submitted to Hockey Alberta.
Minor hockey coaches will be selected throughout the hockey season and will receive a coaching package from Players Bench Team Apparel valued at over $500, which includes a helmet, gloves, track suit, coach bag, puck bag, rink board, and coaching resources.