Committing, coaching, embracing the struggle and finding your place

sent by Nick Grantham | 25th May 2021

"Sometimes which choice you make is not as important as MAKING a choice and COMMITTING to it."

Matthew McConaughey

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Analysis paralysis happens when we overanalyse or overthink a situation. There are times when we get so close to a problem that we become incapable of making a decision and figuring out a solution and appropriate course of action. The next time you're wondering whether to use a block, linear or undulating periodisation model, or you can't decide if a trap bar deadlift will be a better exercise to use than a back squat, stop, have a word with yourself and make a decision. Once you've made your choice, commit to it and crack on.

Source: Green Lights by Matthew McConaughey

"Repetition, it turned out, was less important than struggle."

David Epstein

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My daughter has just finished her GCSE's. It's been a tough old time, what with all the disruption that COVID-19 has caused to her regular schooling and the constantly shifting exam landscape! Learning and revision have been a real challenge. The easy option would have been to learn a bunch of facts and figures through repetition. A bit like how I learnt my times' tables back in the day! There were numerous days when she struggled to grasp key concepts. I'm not sure she was convinced when I tried to explain that real learning would occur during those tough revision sessions. However, the results are starting to come in, suggesting that Dad was right (for a change!). She's done pretty well in the subjects and topic areas that required the most work. It's OK to struggle; that's where real learning takes place.

Source: Range by David Epstein

"A coach's chief responsibility is to capture, keep and direct their athlete's attention."

Nick Winkleman

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The start of a training session is an excellent opportunity to map out what you want your athletes to do. Capture their attention by telling them what they will do, why it's important and how they will do it. Once you're into the session, use Nick Winkleman's coaching communication loop to bring attention to critical moments in the coaching process. DESCRIBE it, DEMONSTRATE it, CUE it, and then get the athletes to DO it. Finally, direct their attention by DEBRIEFING it together.

Source: The Language of Coaching by Nick Winkleman

We often trick ourselves into thinking that we need first place but what we are really looking for is our place.

We Are The Champions Yo-Yo - Netflix

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A few years ago, one of my mentors asked me why I was happy to work with a mid-table football team (he was trying to push my buttons!). I explained that my CV might not be littered with Olympic medallists or include household names and feared and revered teams, but I knew that I thrived on the challenges that the teams and athletes I worked with presented. I like working with 'broken biscuits! Working with a team or athlete that has been written off gets me excited. Of course, it's nice when an athlete wins, but I know that I don't need first place to be considered a success. I've found my calling. Do you know what place makes you happy?

Source: We Are The Champions Yo-Yo - Netflix

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