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As coaches, finding the balance between coaching, work, and family can be a difficult challenge for even the most veteran of coaches. Some coaches never find it and end up getting out of the profession altogether.

On Beyond the Whistle this week, I talked to two coaches about their journey and strategies to find that delicate balance – John Allen Snyder of Indiana Area Senior HS (PA) and Kevin Saunders of Pebblebrook HS (GA). Both are head coaches, but that’s where the similarities end as each shares a very unique and interesting story.

Snyder is married and 34 years old, with a son that is two-and-a-half, with another on the way. The first rule to coaching in his program is family comes first, and he takes that very seriously, so much so that if coaches can’t get on board, he’ll fire them.

Saunders is 51 years old, engaged, married twice before, and learned about balancing football and family the hard way in his first two marriages. During our conversation, he shared with me that he told his first wife from the start that football was going to come first, and later on he hit a turning point while celebrating a state title with his coaching staff and their wives when he looked how happy everyone else was and found himself with no one to share the momentous occasion with.

Each one shares their personal experiences on balancing coaching and family life, and I add a personal note myself on how to prioritize it all.

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Content manager - Doug took the reins in 2011 and the website has been better ever since. A former college player and small college coach, Doug now serves as assistant head coach / offensive coordinator at West Ottawa HS (MI).