Tactical Periodization – Is it really new?

What exactly is tactical periodization? Is it the newest buzzword or a new name for what great coaches have always done? Before you jump on the bandwagon and try to understand some of the poorly translated Portuguese books and interviews on the subject look at history for a minute.

Look at Dean Smith and John Wooden – they did not call it tactical periodization but their practices were designed to thoroughly and systematically prepare for the demands of the game. Look at Chip Kelly when he was at Oregon or Herb Brooks with the 1980 Olympic ice hockey team. Basic sound pedagogy designed to speed up the game. Practices were fast to make the game slow down for them and speed up for the opponent. They focused on key “moments of the game.” Everything was driven by the demands of the game, no fluff. In short tactical periodization is not new, just wrapped in a different package – good marketing.