Athletes are Individuals

June 20, 2013

Performance, Rehabilitation

Vern Gambetta, one of the preeminent strength, sports performance and speed coaches of the last century and pioneer of functional movement left this statement on his facebook page April 27th, 2013.

“It is all about the difference. Biggest error in coaching is to treat everyone alike both from a training & motivational perspective. It is the individual difference that makes the difference. Respect & honor the difference. It takes more work but that is what is what coaching is about.”

I include this quote because I could not have said it better myself.

The best coaches are short, concise, and individualized in their feedback and player instruction. While no one can deny Steve Jobs’ 2005 Stanford Commencement Address (seen below) was inspiring and motivational; contrary to what you may believe the best coaches and leaders do not give long diatribes at halftime. Instead they choose to provide short individual instruction to each player at opportune times to promote optimal learning. Studies have shown that this is the best way to promote learning in each athlete. This also provides the coach with the opportunity to tailor his instruction to each players personality knowing how they will respond and learn optimally.

Coaching is not a general art. Although you may be coaching or your athlete may be participating in team sports keep in mind that each athlete has a different personality, a different set of skills and a different way of reacting to instructions and criticisms. Each player is different and should be coached accordingly.

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