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Showing posts from May, 2017

Needy Kids and Millennials

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The original title of this post was, "When do you make it special?", but I've been accused of being esoteric before so I thought I'd put a bit more 'oomph' in the title. The premise of the post remains the same though - in what ways do we actually create the 'neediness' of athletes in our charge and at what point to we remove obstacles rather than use them as learning opportunities?

There have been a couple of high profile posts lately which really challenged the idea of 'millennials' being needy and demanding. Frank Martin's being one of the more high profile. John Rosemond wrote about the importance of parenting earlier in the year, which hit some similar themes. The ideas of 'helicopter parenting' seem to be related to the predispositions of the young generation today. What impact does that have in sport?

My question comes back to the idea - when do we make things special for developing athletes? I'll give you an example: A…

What Makes a Coach Great?

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When I'm talking about 'Great Coaches' in this context, I'm not only talking about great coaches of champion teams, but also, what makes a great coach of beginners, and developing players?

The traditional coaching pathway is linear in nature. Beginner coaches coach beginners, developing coaches coach developing athletes, and elite coaches coach elite athletes.1 This is understandable and generally due to two things: ambition and money. Developing coaches are always wanting to coach 'better' athletes, and we financially reward coaches who coach higher profile athletes.

Most of what has been written on 'great coaching' is simply looking at a coach who won, and then working out what he/she did. It makes sense to do this, we want to learn from success. One of the risks of only doing this, it that it often involves historical revisionism. (Hint, when you hear someone say: 'the results speak for themselves', that's code for 'please don't …