Firstly, I think that coaches need to be aware of their language as a powerful and potentially harmful tool, especially when coaching children. They are looking up to the coach as a role model and an expert who has now implied to them that 'football' and 'girls' should be tied together in a negative way. This is nothing new, old-school coaches have long used comparisons to females or sexuality as a motivational tool when coaching young male athletes and it is simply not good enough anymore. I even recall reading a study at university where a coach justified this language by stressing he didn't agree with it but that it 'worked'. As far as I am concerned this is lazy, short-term and inappropriate coaching. It is my belief that a youth coach should put effort in to, and take pride in, creating a positive environment and culture that focuses on process and development.
Secondly, too many coaches are drawn into negative comparisons when coaching - "you are doing THIS, like THESE people and that is NOT what we want to be". Athletes, especially young athletes, will only hear the comparison and remember negative experiences from the session. Language should be a motivational tool within the bigger structure, aspiring to be something and using positive benchmarks.
Thirdly, patience is key. That group of U10s may not have executed the drill to his liking on that occasion but they may have done the next time, or the one after. If at that point they still haven't got it then I, as the coach, would have to look at myself - what am I not explaining properly? What is it that I am doing or saying that they just aren't connecting with? Is there something else I can do to get to the same end point?
Language is key to framing the experience for young athletes in all sports. It dictates their view of the session, their view of the end point and what is considered good or bad. Coaches need to take responsibility for this rather than using lazy motivational tools for short-term sporting results but potentially long-term social implications. As a rugby coach I want to inspire my young players (boys or girls) not just to be the next Robshaw or Ford but the next Alphonsi or Scarratt too.