Rachel Steinman is taking the reins as Head Coach of the Varsity Field Hockey program, as well as becoming a full-time physical education teacher at GFS.
GFS recently announced that Rachel Steinman of Chestnut Hill is taking the reins as Head Coach of the Varsity Field Hockey program, as well as becoming a full-time physical education teacher.
Coach Steinman comes to GFS after a notable term at Upper Perkiomen High School, where she served as assistant coach in 2019 and 2020; seasons which saw the Indians clinch the PAC Championship alongside numerous district and state appearances. Starting in 2018, Steinman has coached at the X-Calibur Field Hockey Club in Pottstown.
A standout athlete at Temple University where she majored in Kinesiology, Steinman was an impact player in every sense of the word, from being a starter all the way through her time in the program to eventually becoming the captain of the squad in 2014 and 2015. Temple field hockey had a highly successful string of seasons during Steinman’s time anchoring the Owl’s defense, making it to the Big East Tournament every year, and finishing as the Big East Runner Up in 2014 (losing to the eventual National Champions, UConn) and 2015.
Along the way to her growing coaching career, Steinman has continually rounded out her experience with instructional, managerial, and administrative responsibilities in related industries. At HealthEase in Wayne, drawing on her kinesiology background, she created and taught exercise and nutrition classes, as well as developed individual training programs for each client’s needs. During this time she also held the position of assistant manager of the facility, where she gained important supervisory and logistical skills. Coach Steinman has further connected with the Field Hockey world through her position at Longstreth Sporting Goods (now BSN Sports), where she has spent the past three years working directly with many field hockey clubs and coaches, not to mention hands-on immersion in the latest developments in field hockey safety and equipment technology.
Having made her mark at Upper Perkiomen, Steinman sought the head coach position at GFS. “I was drawn to Germantown Friends School once I saw how they stress the importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion,” she explains, describing how being an Owl played a foundational role in this thinking. “My time at Temple University helped me grow individually by being immersed in the Philly community and being able to meet people from different backgrounds. That appreciation led me to realize that I want to continue to be a part of a diverse and inclusive community and be an example and role model for younger generations.”
Coach Steinman intends to bring her ability to make human connections to her new role as the GFS head coach. “I have always made it a priority to establish connections with the athletes,” she explains. “I find joy in getting to know these young athletes on a personal level and want to build trust amongst them all. I believe establishing these types of connections with athletes is crucial to their success.”
Field Hockey is the perfect sport for Steinman to implement her people skills in a way that fully stimulates each person to challenge themselves and to grow. “My coaching philosophy is to have a program that encourages athletes to learn and develop on and off the playing field and to create a safe and positive environment during good times and bad,” she remarks. “I will constantly challenge athletes while providing both encouragement and support. Field hockey is a game of mistakes, but it is how the athlete responds after a mistake is made that influences their success.”
GFS Director of Athletics Katie Bergstrom Mark was enthusiastic about the range of abilities she brings to the job. “Coach Steinman brings with her an impressive depth of skills and the most current knowledge of the modern hockey world. In a sport that has changed so much in the past few years, it is imperative that we have a head coach that is hooked into the most up to date field hockey training and strategies. Even in my first conversation with her, I personally learned something and immediately knew that she would make a positive impact on our athletes on day one. GFS has just surpassed 100 years of field hockey, and I am really looking forward to Coach Steinman’s leadership and spirit as we head into a new era of GFS hockey!”
For Steinnam’s part, she has already outlined her immediate first steps to take the team to the next level. “I plan to come to preseason and hit the ground running right away to prepare the team for a successful season,” she asserts. “Preseason will focus on basic skills, learning strategies and set plays, and improving overall fitness by conditioning and weight training. I plan to develop this program to be competitive in the Friends School League. In my first year, we will also focus on developing youth athletes by offering camps and clinics to our middle and lower school students at GFS and the wider Germantown neighborhood. Philadelphia needs more youth field hockey opportunities!” Commenting on the reasoning behind her strategy, Steinman explains, “Introducing and offering field hockey opportunities to younger athletes is essential to this program’s success. It is also my goal to create connections with these athletes. I will provide positive experiences, help them understand how to deal with adversity, and will push them every day to better themselves on and off the field.”