The Best Coaching Book I’ve Ever Read?

Anson Dorrance does not get enough credit. Unfortunatley that may be because he coaches women. His book Training Soccer Champions might just be the best book on coaching I have ever read. How many people know that Dorrance initially took his practice ideas from legendary basketball coach Dean Smith? Certainly not me. This book was a great read that is unfortunately out of print. Have any of you read anything else by Dorrance that might be more readily available? I’m not looking for a bio but rather a coaching book. The points that Dorrance makes in Training Soccer Champions will help any coach in any sport. If you can get a copy, read it.

10 Responses to “The Best Coaching Book I’ve Ever Read?”

  1. Hey Coach Boyle,
    I’m not sure if you have a copy of it, but Dorrance’s article “Coaching Women” is the best thing I’ve read on the subject. Insights that I’d never considered, like how much women HATE watching game-film. Really interesting read. I’ll post it on my site and copy the link here.

  2. mboyle1959 Says:

    Funny, you put me on the spot. I haven’t read as many coaching books as I thought. I really liked the Charlie Francis Training System, now sold as Training for Speed. I also liked Speed Trap. However, your question made me realize how often I’ve applied business or self help concepts to coaching. I just finished First Break All the Rules which I think has lots of coaching application. I think Good to Great and Five Dysfunctions of a Team had lots of application to coaching.

  3. Coach Boyle,

    What are numbers 2-5 then (best coaching books)?

  4. mboyle1959 Says:

    Frank- do you know where to get the audios? I love audio stuff.

  5. Todd Jones Says:

    Beat me to it Coach! After recommending Anson’s book to me via the forum I swiftly picked it up and have to agree, I wrote over 8 pages of notes from the Book and it only has around 100 pages on coaching. Highly recommend!

    Thanks Again Coach

  6. TJ Allan Says:

    Just bought. You can get it for $20 at They have a couple other books/manuals too

  7. frank dolan Says:

    Coach, a couple years ago I bought a Steven Covey program entitled Leadership. It was a bunch of audios one of which featured Anson speaking about how they quantify everything. And I mean down to how many touches a player had each practice! Everything put up on a big board. Awesome focus, dedication, and u are right… not given enough credit.

  8. Julie Eibensteiner Says:


    Have you read AD’s Vision of a Champion as well?
    Tony DiCicco’s Catch Then Being Good is a great one a the pysch aspects of coaching.

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