February - Coach of the Month

Gazelle Sports Soccer is grateful for the community of quality and diverse coaches we work with. Every month we recognize a coach from our community as our Featured Coach of the month, sharing their story, wisdom and exceptional insights of the game and life.
We are delighted to introduce Bob Kramer, Pass FC, as the February Coach of the Month. Coach Kramer was nominated by his peers not only for his compassionate approach to to his team but also for his contribution to the Special Olympics soccer program.
Coach Kramer coaches the HS Girls age groups at PASS FC and is the Junior Varsity coach at Northview High School. Other off field accolades include recognition on school appreciation days and selected as ‘most influential person in my life’ by his players.
JoAnne Van Slooten, Executive Director, had this to say about Coach Kramer: “This past summer I was approached by a friend of mine who runs the Special Olympics soccer program asking for a field, goals and/or coaches, so I reached out to our PASS FC coaches for any interest in this volunteer experience. Bob was the first to reply and was set up with a team for the fall season. He later thanked me for making the connection saying it was the most rewarding experience he has had in all of his years of coaching.”
Coach Kramer is married with two grown up children, a lifelong resident of Grand Rapids, MI. His experience with soccer started in Middle School in the 70’s eventually becoming a Captain of his High School team at Union High School. As a high school student, Coach Kramer actively worked on an initiative with the Grand Rapids Public School Board to recognize and bring soccer into all city high schools as a Varsity sport. The effort was successful the year after he graduated from Union. He loves coaching and looks forward to staying involved and working with players in the PASS program for many years to come.
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Exclusive Q&A
Q: What’s your favorite soccer shoe all time?
A: Ha, this is an easy one. For many years it's always been Adidas Mundial
    Q: Favorite club team? (EPL, La Liga, Bundesliga)
    A: Futbol Club Barcelona
      Q: Favorite player? (men, woman, U21)
      A: M - Lionel Messi, W - Megan Rapinoe, U21 - Marcello Borgess
      Q: When you coach and teach your team defense, what's more important technique or attitude?
      A: To me it's technique. If the technical fundamentals are in place the mental aspects of the game can be developed with confidence.
        Q: What do you think is the best character trait a coach can possess?
        A: Positive role model and support for promoting skill development with consideration of each players abilities. All players can contribute in many different ways, it's up to the coach to figure out what each player can best contribute towards the success of the team and build the squad to best utilize each of the players strengths.
          Q: If you could choose one place to live in the world where would it be and why?
          A: Isla Mujeres, only those that have been there can understand.
            Q: To – date, as a coach, what has brought you the most fulfillment?
            A: Being a part of our soccer club and developing lifelong friendships with so many wonderful Players, Coaches, and families while being able to stay connected to a sport I truly have a passion for.
              Q: What’s wrong but sounds right?
              A: A "Near Miss"
                Q: What’s your most impressive “go to” meal that you can cook?
                A: Grilled boneless Chicken
                  Q: Did you have any pre-game or post game rituals you practiced routinely when you played?
                  A: Always scraped my cleats together just prior to start the game. Obviously I had to do that after the game as well but that was more for cleaning reason's
                    Q: What's important for players to understand about you as a coach?
                    A: I respect and value each one of them as players and student athletes both on and off the field and I always view my role as a coach as the privilege to have the opportunity to take the field and work with each of them.
                      Q: What team building activities do you like?
                      A: Team Dinners after Away Games & Tournaments.
                        Q: What do you foresee as the key skills your players will want to focus on for development and growth ?
                        A: Commitment, not only to themselves but also to each of their team mates and coaches in both practices and in games.
                          Q: Do you think playing time is more important than training with the best coaches and players?
                          A: No I do not, play skills and personal development builds the foundation for each players abilities for contributing to the team during games. Strong Technical abilities are a necessity in supporting Tactical game play.
                            Q: Is having fun more of an importance than winning?
                            A: Absolutely, enjoying what your doing drives the desire to continue to do it to the best of your ability at all times.
                              Q: Who are some of your favorite musicians, bands or singers?
                              A: Wow, way to many to list but the Beatles, The Who, Yes, Genesis, Paul McCartney, Rod Stewart, Tom Petty, Hall & Oates, Jackson Browne, Alan Parsons, Steely Dan, U2, Fleetwood Mac
                                Q: Why do you feel like impacting the community is important for your club?
                                A:We support each other for the values we all share. Healthy active disciplined activities for today's youth builds character and a foundation as players develop into young adults, and these qualities are displayed as they take part in many activities both on and off the field that contribute to everyone's quality of life within the community itself. With all of our support, today's athlete's/players from our club will eventually become tomorrow's coaches and leaders themselves.