coaching

4 MOST IMPORTANT THINGS CLIENTS NEED FROM THEIR COACH

As a coach you are teaching clients to achieve new skills, helping them improve strength and performance. On a daily basis you are being asked for your professional expertise and guidance on learning, correcting or progressing to pull ups, handstand and ring skills.

What does your client need from you in order to achieve a gymnastics skill specific goal?

You may think the answer is more progressions, coaches eyes, different cues. At one point, I thought so too.

Have you ever provided a client with cues and progressions, you turn your back and realise they revert back to their old ways. Seeming to disregard your expertise. Why is this happening? In my quest to understand the learning process better I read Josh Kaufman’s book “The First 20 Hours.” The thing that struck a chord was that learning and skill acquisition are very different things. I started applying this to coaching.

LET’S TAKE THIS COMMON SCENARIO:

Sally kicks up to quite aggressively to a handstand, back to wall, feet touching, back in a slight arch with head sticking out, she fatigues quickly. Sally has been doing this for 12 months and asks for a progressions to a freestanding handstand.

You watch and realise there are number of things going wrong, she doesn't have the correct body position, body awareness is lacking, timing is off and needs to improve her strength.

If you are adequately prepared to help her the goal, you need to set her on the right path or send her to someone that can.

 

You (the coach) need to teach the client about the Why, How, Help them Identify Mistakes and finally Practice.

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Learning and Practicing

  1. Why- Why is this important? Why must it be done this way? First comes learning, this includes an understanding of why it is important for a skill to be done a particular way. If the client doesn’t understand why, they will find little motivation take on your advice. Why are you asking the client to move in a particular way? Is it to progress them onto a higher level skill? Safety?

  2. How- How are they going to change what they are currently doing. What are they missing, strength, mobility, body awareness? All of the above? Provide them with positional drills, mobility, strength and always link it back to the reason why. This will emphasise the importance.

  3. Identifying their own mistakes- Can they feel when they have performed a drill correctly or incorrectly. Now that the client is starting to get a better understanding of what is required. Ask them question, "can you feel what happened there, what could you have done better?"

  4. Practice, practice, practice- Repeating the set drills, progressions, mobility, strength. This is only complete once the steps above have been thoroughly understood.

If you’re a Coach or PT and are guessing your way through gymnastics coaching join our Coaches Gymnastics Classes at Bondi Junction and Marrickville. You will learn new skills yourself and become a better coach to your clients.

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Do you have LEAKS in your training?

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Reading Seth Godin’s blog this week Visualize the leaks had me thinking about wasted effort. Whilst Seth is referring to leaks in organizations. I started to think about leaks in training sessions.

When was the last time you saw a leaking tap in your home and simply walked past without doing anything about it?

You didn’t I’m sure.

You hate waste.

If you had walked past it would have been on your mind all day long.

However, there are leaks in your training and you keep walking past. Address them and stop pretending they don’t exist.

1. Goals

Have you set them?

Training without setting goals does not mean you won’t make any progress. You almost certainly will. 

Although, training without specific goals that are meaningful to you means that you might make moderate progress in areas that are not really that important to you. 

Example- you consistently PB your back squat, but deep down you are frustrated that you still can’t manage a pull up.

You need to identify where you want to go- and have a plan of attack to get you there.

Goal setting can be extremely challenging if you haven’t done it before. Recruit a coach that you trust to guide you through the process. 

Upon completion of a successful goal setting session you should have clarity on:


1. Where you are right now

2. Where you want to go

3. What immediate action you need to put in place & a plan to stay accountable to it

 

Finally- the goal needs to SCARE you. Not to death, but it needs to give you butterflies thinking about it. If you have set a goal that would likely be achieved in time with little or no effort on your part, a very low sense of accomplishment will be associated with ticking off that goal.

 

2. Are you bringing the right attitude to your sessions?

Each and every training session has the power to transform you. You can come out a better person and better athlete in every single session if you approach it with the right mindset.

However, if you are dragging yourself to the gym with self talk such as “I just want to get this over and done with.” That is exactly what you will get. Before you know it, the session will be over and done with. Whilst you will have gotten some physical benefits out of doing it, you haven’t taken anything away and become a better person in the process.

DO THIS INSTEAD

Before you start your workout, ask yourself

WHY am I doing this? 

After you finish your workout, ask yourself

What did I learn about my mind and body today?

What could have gone better?

What can I implement to improve next time?

Once you are aware of the leak, you need to TAKE ACTION. 

           STOP WALKING PAST.