Young coaches will inevitably use the same coaching cue to get a response from an athlete. It is true on the field, court, and in the pool, in the weight room, or even in the business world. As we become less green, and earn a bit of grey, we realize there isn’t a need for more volume, but more so better quality and clarity. A simple rule to consider as a coach, captain, or teammate is that if you say something three times and nothing changes, change the way you are approaching the situation.
There are many style to coaching a new concept to athletes/clients. As people in general, we have various ways we learn. You have the “show and go” who can hear it and be off and running. The “watch me” who wants to walk through it to make sure they are doing it right. “Mr./Ms. Draw It Up” who learns most effectively when you break out the dry erase board or have a video cut up. And the ever more common, “I gotta see it” who wants and/or needs to see their teammates work through it before jumping in and taking ownership of what they are responsible/accountable for.
As you prepare to work with a team or group, whether it is at your next practice or in a board room, take time to prepare how you will teach each of these four learning styles. Do you lead with a video or talk through your expectations first? Do you have teammates explain the expectations off of print outs before you coach them up on the finer points of each play? The more ways we can connect the better the overall outcome will be.
Listen to the advice from UMBC’s Head Strength and Conditioning Coach, Brian Amenta, as he shares what has worked for him and the Golden Retriever strength program.
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