Showing posts from January, 2015

Don't Learn What You Don't Need

I've been spending more and more time thinking about Technical Excellence. How important it is, how hard it is to achieve, what is really is and what it isn't. There are two points of clarification to start with: I am not talking about Motor Development , or the gradual progression of technical abilities. I'm talking about Technical Excellence, specific to whatever stage of the development the athlete is at. I'm not talking about Technical Perfection or Competence. Excellence fits into a scale of technical development. If you look at the development of technical ability as a scale, Technical Limitations and Technical Perfection are at opposite ends of the scale. Both are pretty obvious. Athletes often develop technical limitations that prevent them from succeeding at an elite level (as always on this blog, we are talking about elite as athletes who win medals at World or Olympic level). Athletes occasionally develop technical perfection, which is great, bu

You Don't Know What You Don't Know

Confucius  said, "What you know you know, what you don't know, you don't know."  Rumsfeld  talked about "Known knowns", and "unknown unknowns". This blog post isn't about either of those people. Its about recognising when you don't know something, and using that information wisely. Firstly - there are good aspects to not knowing, as well as negative. For some coaches , pre season is the best time of the year, because everything is still possible, and you don't yet know all the things that will end up going wrong! But....... I've coached professionally for much of the last 20 years. I've also spent quite a lot of time in coach development. One thing that has become clear is that when you are a younger coach, you have no idea what you don't know. 10 years ago I thought I was a much better coach than I think I am now. But at the same time, I know I'm a better coach now than I was 10 years ago! I just didn't kn