I just finished a book that is a must for every coach’s library, Practice Perfect: 42 Rules for Getting Better at Getting Better by Doug Lemov, Erica, Woolway and Katie Yezi. I have added this book to the reading list for my GAIN Apprentorship program. It is a very good blend of the science behind practice and the author’s practical experience. Obviously the cornerstone for effective athlete development is practice, but too often it is just about putting in the time. Now with the 10,000 hour figure looming out there everyone is even more concerned with putting in the time. It is not the time in practice, it what you put into the time. Practice must be deliberate, focused and connected to the desired end result – performance in competition.
In an article in the January 19 New York Times on 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman says it quite well: “ Every game is different,” Roman said this week. “No matter how you look at it, you have to pay homage to the football gods every week in practice, in meetings, in your preparation. Then you have to go out and perform on game day.”
What are you doing in practice? Do you know why? Are the practices appropriate for the people you are coaching? Are you paying homage to the gods of your sport? Read Practice Perfect for answers to these questions and many more to help your athletes be better at getting better.