Classic Track & Field Tales

trackclassicsThis is a page-turner; I could not put it down. I absolutely devoured this book in one sitting. This is a trip down the memory lane of the true glory days of track and field. The stores, anecdotes and recollections that Larry Knuth has complied represents a look back at the golden years of Track & Field though the eyes of athletes’ coaches and fans. If you are a serous student of coaching this is a must read, If you are a track & field coach fan or coach this will be one your definitive historical texts. Read more

The Future – The Coaches Domain

By necessity the future is where coaches live. Sure we have to be in the moment just like our athletes but virtually everything we do in training is preparing for events in the near or distant future. Planning is a huge part of this future orientation. Planning is a way to bring the future into the present and be able to do something about it. It seems that the longer you coach, the more experiences you have the more proficient you get at producing future performances. Read more

Learning to Train – A Giant Step

Watching the swim workout Saturday with the Sarasota Sharks reminded of how important it is to learn how to train. It also reminded what a big step this is in the development of the athlete. The group ranged from junior level world-class swimmers to fourteen year olds just finishing their fourth month with the senior group. The contrast in the workout was amazing to watch. Everyone did the workout. Read more

How good are you?

What are you doing to get better? Are you the best at what you do? How do you know how good you are – How do you measure your performance? What do you do? Are you doing what you do because everyone else is doing it or are your forging your own path? Read more

Movement Screening

How can you call something a functional movement screen when most of the movements are in positions that are at low levels of function for any athletic body? We need to always keep in mind that we have three movement constants the body, the ground, and gravity. In movement assessment we want to see the effect of gravity on the body and how the body effectively uses the ground to be able to stabilize, produce, and reduce force. Screening using artificial movements in a sterile environment is of little or no value. Read more

Trainability

How well can you train? That is trainability. Great athletes have a high level of trainability. They thrive on the work, while an athlete with lesser trainability just barely survives. Your ability to train effectively enough to stimulate the appropriate adaptation is a key ability. Well you might say that is obvious, if it so obvious then why do I see this factor ignored everywhere I go. Read more

Connect The Dots

kinetic_chainGiven that the body is a kinetic chain and all systems of the body work synergistically to produce efficient movement then training is all about connections. Biomechanically think toenails to fingernails, everything is connected. The better and more effective the training the more effective the connections between body parts and the various systems of the body. We can isolate in theory and for mental convenience but that is not the way the body works in real life. As coaches we need to consciously make connections to make training more effective and efficient. Read more

Some Notes/Thoughts from “The Generals”

GeneralsJust finished reading Thomas Ricks latest book “The Generals” – American Military Command from WW II to Today. I found it very interesting reading in that it explained much of our military success and failure  over the past eighty years. But as a coach interested in leadership, organizational behavior and excellence I found it rich in ideas and thoughts. Here are a few thoughts that I found particularly relevant: Read more

Your Brand

I have been hearing a lot about brands and branding lately. In a traditional sense a brand is a name or a symbol. In coaching and teaching it represents more, it is you and what you stand for. You are your brand. Who you are? Read more

Practice – Getting Better at Getting Better

9781118216583_cover.inddI 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. Read more