Highly acclaimed UCLA Women’s gymnastics coach Valorie Kondos Field shares insights on how to use uniqueness and authenticity to achieve success.
How did a professional ballerina become one of the winningest coaches in NCAA history? Valorie Kondos Field-or Miss Val as she’s affectionately known-has never even tumbled, flipped, or ever played any type of organized sports and yet she has been able to craft a legendary coaching career through curiosity, creativity, intention to detail, and unwavering care for the overall well-being of her athletes. For Miss Val, it’s not about the X’s and O’s, it’s about choreographing your life and owning the choices you make.
Miss Val has shaped her UCLA Gymnastics program as a life skills class and now she’s sharing those lessons with you, whether you’re an athlete, business leader, or simply someone who wants to own their destiny. Miss Val’s philosophies are timeless. Her coaching style is unorthodox. LIFE IS SHORT, DON’T WAIT TO DANCE is a thought-provoking, fun journey through the personal stories and anecdotes of the 35-year career of a dancer/choreographer turned athletic coach. Included are Miss Val’s favorite memories she experienced with her mentor, legendary coach John Wooden; as well as some of her most unforgettable stories of the Olympians and student-athletes she’s coached. In 2014, Miss Val was diagnosed with breast cancer and explains how she made it one of the best years of her life-really!
Miss Val reveals how her head coaching journey started off disastrously, spending years mimicking other top coaches while her team suffered because of her lack of authenticity. In time she realized being a gymnastics immigrant wasn’t a detriment, it was a gift. When she embraced and honed her own uniqueness Miss Val led her Bruins to six NCAA Championships and became one of only two active coaches to ever be inducted into the UCLA Athletic Hall of Fame. In 2016 Miss Val was named Pac-12 “Gymnastics Coach of the Century.” LIFE IS SHORT, DON’T WAIT TO DANCE is packed with brutally honest advice delivered in an inspirational tone Miss Val is known for. Did we mention she’s a ballerina who’s never played sports?