"Commitment is the state or quality of being dedicated to a cause, activity, etc.. It is also known as a pledge or an undertaking"
Winter is amongst us. You wake up in the morning and its dark. You leave work and its dark. The nights are drawing in so quickly now that You start to lose yourself in the 9-5 working week. You feel tired. You mentally feel drained. The football is on tv and an ice cold beer is waiting for you. You are drawn to your bed.
Today is Tuesday and for a sale hockey players the 2nd most important day of the week.
Today is training... Training is fundamental to each and everyone of us. Training is the acquisition of knowledge, skills, and competencies as a result of the teaching of vocational or practical skills and knowledge that relate to specific useful competencies. Training has specific goals of improving one's capability, capacity, and performance.
As a coach I look at training in a whole new and different light. Some of you may not realise how much energy and out of hours work goes into just that one hour on a Tuesday night. So I am going to break it down for you.
I am the Sale junior coach/Moss Park ladies assistant coach. I am going to run you through the typical training session.
Season objectives - This is the first thing I do before I even pick up a pad and pen. What key things am I going to focus on this year? For example this year I want all juniors, no matter ability or age to confidently push, stop, hit and move the ball under control.
Research - as I am an up and coming coach. A lot of my drills are basic. So I spend a lot of the time watching hockey on the Internet. Reading blogs, listening to podcasts and viewing YouTube clips. I invest a good deal of my free time into trying to improve my knowledge.
Session planning - This is never as simple as everyone may think. Lesson one, always plan two session. Lesson two always plan a third. It still to this day amazes me how I can spend hours the night before planning in depth sessions and they never get used. Sessions depend on so many different variables; number of participants, ability of participants, weather, space on pitch, time on pitch, equipment etc etc. I could go on. As a coach I am constantly checking the weather reports. I have too. I am solely responsible for whoever I coach. I am the one who decides whether its safe.
Practice - once everything above is ticked off and training is a go. I then have to put the session into practice. There are so many different approaches and... They all have to be used in order for every individual to get something out of the session.
So most commonly coaches tend use VAK. You will have all seen it in practice Yet some of you may not even have noticed.
V - visual learners have a preference for seeing (think in pictures; visual aids such as overhead slides, diagrams, handouts, etc.).
A - Auditory learners best learn through listening (lectures, discussions, tapes, etc
K - Tactile/kinesthetic learners prefer to learn via experience—moving, touching, and doing (active exploration of the world.
All that above aside a coach then has to analyse difficulty in sessions and apply them to the sed ability of the group.
Questions - a good coach then uses question and answer exercises to engage the group, ensuring key points are understood.
Finally we listen. We watch and we listen. We listen to the needs of the group. We listen to any problems that students may have, any issues with certain exercise. We mentor them. When someone is down we motivate them. We offer support to them. We encourage them, we befriend them, we invest in them.
I don't coach because I have too. I coach because I want to. And with that want comes responsibility.
Rob, Lyndon, Nick and myself do this because we love the club. We are dedicated to cause, we respect the club. We honour our abilities and knowledge and see it only fit to pass it on. We do this most of the time with out a thankyou or even an acknowledgment. We give up our weekends to support the clubs we coach. We give up hours through the week evaluating people's attitudes and moods. We analyse previous games and sessions and prepare for the following weeks.
When you look at it, It's not just as simple as turning up with balls cones and a smile. It's about commitment.
So when you are sat at home, thinking its cold or wet ,the footballs on, im tired, I'm not going training. Remember we are the ones standing there in the wet, in the cold, missing the football, committed to the cause. So think to yourselves...What could I do better? And and respect the amount of time we give up for the benefit of you and the club.
No pain no gain.