In the third article of our “Women in Esports” series, we wanted to explore the coaching scene of League of Legends esports. Following up on our interviews with Prime League ADC, Mareike “Sayna” Burg, and freelance caster, host, and support player, Anna “Banana” Schifft, we got the chance to talk with Lea “Lea One” Fitzen.
Lea One is a twenty year-old coach working as the assistant coach for Flayn Esports, an Austrian team competing in the Prime League’s 1st Division. After playing League of Legends for many years, she’s developed a passion for coaching and has been in the professional esports scene for two years.
Here’s some of her thoughts on Women in Esports and her experience.
How did you get into coaching professionally?
“I start[ed] as a League of Legends player competitively with a D[iamond] 1 Peak. At this time, I realized that I want to be a Coach and got my eSport Trainer Licence by ESBD, at the same time I was starting my Coaching Career at Flayn Esports.”
Is there someone you look up to in the esports scene? Who?
“It’s the [current] Head Coach I’m working with right now at Flayn, @CoachReveal.”
In your opinion, how important is coaching? How much does it impact the performance of a team?
“A coach is the fundamental of a team, [they’re] essential for the success of a team. A good coach [leads] a team [in] the direction in which they need to improve.”
As a female who coaches male players, do you think that male players respect you and value your opinion as much as other coaches who are male?
“It doesn’t depend on the gender, it depends on the person you are. It is important that players from early on see that you have a certain understanding of the game and that you show some assertiveness.”
In the most prominent teams in the LoL esports scene, female coaching staff are far and few between. What do you think are some main causes of that?
“I think the reason for that is that not many try to achieve something there. A lot of girls take it easy as players/coaching staff and go to the female scene, because for reasons like money they don’t want to join [the] mixed scene. I think if more women would actually try to achieve something they would be able to. Even if there are some prejudices, that does not apply to all organizations. “
What do you think can encourage more female representation in LoL coaching staff?
“Close the only female scene, and the will to work hard for it. Go public if you get discriminated.”
Do you have any tips for other women hoping to become coaches for a team in the future?
First, you really need to have the will to be a coach, don’t do it half-baked. Apart from that, start in learning positions [like] Manager/Assistant Coach, where you get the chance to work with experienced coaching staff. Most teams don’t look for an assistant coach, so be proactive. Last but not least, don’t give up, eSports, or sports overall, will always have ups and downs.”
A special thanks goes to Lea One for sharing her opinion on the issue, and providing an in-depth look on working as a women in the League of Legends mixed gender coaching scene.
Watch out for our next Women In Esports article, where we will be talking with a player in the all-female scene, providing a look at the female-only scene of professional League of Legends.