Why Coaches Need Rest Days, Too


Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, because I am lowly and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” – Matthew 11:28-30


Sports culture thrives on the idea of going harder, pushing, breaking through your limits to keep going. We applaud it; therefore, it gets repeated and even expected, because, yes, such grit is necessary for competition. This is equally true for the coach.

Coaches push hard, cutting into personal family and vacation time. Compromises are made to check out a new recruit or restructure the offense. For some coaches, there are no days off, and this can dangerously lead to burnout.

Jesus offers a better way. He shows us how to approach our sport or career with excellence and heart, yet not be so identified with it that it rules our life and decision-making. Coaches need rest because of the sheer demand of the job, and because God demands and modeled it.

We’ve been gifted a relationship with God where He invites us to cast our burdens on Him and rest in His grace, love and provision. God allows us space and freedom to pause from the weariness of life. Sometimes it’s a physical break; sometimes it’s a break from an attitude and way of thinking.

Resting means we can choose to not be anxious and stressed in a worrisome situation. We can, instead, give God permission to work out the uncontrollables and trust Him to do so. Do you give Jesus the burdens of your life and career? Can you lay at His feet in honesty and transparency and talk about how you’re really doing, allowing Him permission to take care of you?

Jesus modeled incorporating rest into our rhythms. Whether in the early morning hours or after a long day of ministering, part of Jesus’ rhythm was to go to a quiet place and connect with His Father. This time of connection is like a coaches’ Huddle, when we get affirmation, direction, instruction and strategy from one another and God’s Word.

When we can cast our cares on God and learn to truly trust Him, we put peace in God into practice and free our souls for what’s important. From our time of connection with the Lord, we can give deeper impact to our teams, our staff and other coaches in our network. Jesus’ way of living is light, and it’s offered to us as a gift. Take it today.

  • Have you been experiencing burnout? How has it made you feel?
  • What can you do to deeply rest in Jesus instead?
  • Try getting up a little earlier or carving out time in the evening to read the Bible and hear from God.

“Father, I admit that I have placed my job, things to do, my status, over You. Forgive me when I have burned myself out from striving instead of being still with You. Help me to pull away from the rigors of my day and hear from You, receive Your Word and apply it to my life. You are patient and loving, and I want to rest with You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”