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Just Curious | Welcome and General

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Posted in: General

Just Curious

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  • SteveRuis

    I wonder why there seems to be no clear distinction between coaches of team sports and coaches of individual sports. The differences are huge, yet we seem to lump everyone together. I coach an individual sport (archery) and team dynamics, playing time, etc. just never come into play. Designing plays and group drills, meh. The relationship focus is one-on-one and "playing favorites" doesn't come up.

    It seems that a division of the two categories would help clarify tasks and subjects both.

  • anfy

    In my opinion, this forum covers a wide scope - some topics are very relevant, others not so. I personally would not like to see a division, because, as a bowls coach, I have to deal with both individual and team play, as well as (usually) two different disciplines - indoor and outdoor, but any tips, ideas, etc I can get I am grateful for, no matter what sport they come from. I regularly use a tip which originated from archery to great effect!

    What I would like to see is the major sporting field beside contributors as it is interesting to see the different approaches in different sports.

  • SteveRuis

    I am not suggesting physical separation, something more like just a tag system: this post applies to ind coaches, or to team coaches, or to both. Obviously a post on team spirit building would be tagged for Team Coaches alone, etc.

    Of all people, I would not be recommended division or exclusion. I find most of my coaching inspiration in the golf coaching literature (there is almost no archery coaching literature)!

  • dustya13

    The relevence of 'team coaching' may not be apparent - do you or your athelete consider you both as a team? is your athelete a member of a club whereby she/he enters competitions both individually and as a club?

    Whilst the main thrust of 'team coaching' is often focussed in strategy and tactics - culture, community and realtionship building are just as important.

    I would suggest that Justin Rose has enjoyed being part of a 'team' over this past few weeks and indeed, when the Ryder Cup rolls around he will again

    I guess I am trying to respectfully suggest that 'team coaching' may mean something different in Archery - the challenge is to find the pearl which will help your athelete flourish 

  • SteveRuis

    Please do not misunderstand. There are tem archery competitions, but there is almost no team work, just a combination of individual performances. In baseball, if you want to be able to pull off double plays, a small gropup of people have to cooperate; their skills have to mesh together. The shortstop needs to know his second baseman likes the ball to come in high, the first baseman is weak at "digging out balls," etc. The teams I am talking about are one's in which the players act in concert, not one's like in archery and gymnastics in which the scores for individual performances are combined.

    In some forms of team golf (alternate shot match play, for example) there is some small amount of team play but by an large it is individual paly. In golf match play, four-ball, it is best individual score on each hole that counts and each individual plays his/her own ball and while the players can consult with one another one has to ask if those consultations are any better than between a golfer and caddy.

    Football, soccer/futball, basketball, and baseball are clearly team sports in which team work and team dynamics are important. Archery and golf are not.

  • robertkmaaye
    On 18/08/16 4:59 PM, Steve Ruis said:

    I am not suggesting physical separation, something more like just a tag system: this post applies to ind coaches, or to team coaches, or to both. Obviously a post on team spirit building would be tagged for Team Coaches alone, etc.

    Hi Steve

    Welcome to the community! I think you’re the first US based coach to join…so great to have you on board. Always happy to get suggestions on how we can improve the site. The reason we haven’t set up a ‘tagging’ system as you described or differentiated is largely because we don’t want to pre-judge what someone might feel is relevant to them. You could be reading a blog or forum post that might focus on something more commonly associated with team based sports (e.g. team spirity building as you say) but there might be something within that post that might trigger a thought or idea that you can apply when coaching an individual sport.

    Hope that clarifies the thinking.

    I hope you enjoy your ConnectedCoaches experience and find it useful



  • skitson

    Hi Steve. Hope you are well. I think this is a really interesting discussion. I like the baseball analogy. As someone who develops coaches and puts programmes together to support coaches this is certainly something I will be more mindful of. I think there are possibly further opportunities to develop support (formal and informal) that lends itself slightly more to individualised coaching for those wishing to learn more about unique relationships, dynamics, practices they encounter linked to team and/or individual coaching in a given context for example.

    This has already started in many sports i.e. football (soccer) or rugby coaching that I am a little more familiar with where specific training is now in place for defensive and attacking coaches and specific player roles. Age group specific opportunities for coaches across many sports also continues to grow so I am sure training coach development will continue to evolve and as coaches strive for those marginal gains this could be another area explored further. It is exciting to think what will coach development, courses and training or support look like for coaches in say 5 -10 years time espeically considering the role of technology. The important thing for me though is that coaches continue to share these ideas and different ways of doing things. In my eyes most good coaches are thieves (I know I am) but the very very best coaches are the ones who at a crossroad give left a go whilst everyone else goes right and then in 4 years time meet up and the one who went left finds those tiny gains and gets their athlete or team a gold. I like a bit of revolution in my evolution.

  • SteveRuis

    I could not agree more. we are tryinmg to put together something like what you have created here for archery coaches. There is much we need to say to one another and so far, the dialogue between coaches has either been one-to-one or much too formal.

    It is also difficult to get good feedback from our group. Many coaches don't feel qualified to ask questions or offer suggestions, so it is a bit of an uphill struggle.

    This is why good examples of what can be done, such as you have started here, are so important. Once coaches of all stripes expect to have some sort of dialog available, then we will have made an impact.

  • SteveRuis

    Which is why I suggested a tagging system. The tags are applied by posters so if mistakes are made they can be corrected by them. And because they are just tags they can be ignored but also can be used to sort posts, something that will need to be done easily once the numbers of posts climbs into the thousands and higher.

    Congratulations on your effort, you are inspiring our attempt to do a similar thing for archery coaches worldwide.

  • IanMahoney

    In athletics it is an individual sport but also a team sport in relays and a whole team sport in demestic track & fiels meetings or road events.

    On the team bus on the way home the team manager reads out the results, resulting (forgive the oun) each individual gats their result and hears how the rest of the team got on making both individual pleasant and each athlete can fell a sense of pride, contibuting to the team score.

    It doesn't matter if you got one point or 10, everyone plays a part.

    playing favourites shuld never come in the equation, any sports person has good days and bad days. Coaches and nanagers need to spot the sirns of platwuing/ over training and also take in account of the athltes home life. There are 101 reasons why somebody may not perform well.

  • SteveRuis

    There are sports like track (but not field) that have some team aspects but are mostly individual. The key point is that any athletes who are part of a team effort have to have a good working relationship with one another. Even though a track "team" is participating in a "team" contest, the discus thrower and the pole vaulter don't even have to know one another. Their relationship to one another isn't particularly important. So, we often use the label of "team" for collective efforts of individual, even when there is no "teamwork" involved.

    My point is that in individual sports, the relation's axis is coach to athlete. In a team sport it is coach to team with individual nuances. Individual coaches are never teaching colaborative techniques, they are not trying to get athletes to work together. Group motivation dynamics are quite differenct from individual motivation dynamics, etc.

  • Seahorsecoach

    I have to say having read through this discussion, that I can see a few short comings to tagging posts. I am a recreational paddlesports coach work with performers who don’t recognise themselves as ‘athletes’. My main disciplines are sea kayak, inland kayak and canoe (non-racing). In addition to this if I am on the water coaching I am quite likely to be leading the group of students, look after them and coaching individuals but also managing the group (team) as a whole.

    This by my count would need tags for recreational coaching, individual coaching, team coaching and leadership. This split may sound odd to competition coaches but is very much the norm with outdoor coaches (MTB, paddlesports, climbing/ mountaineering instructors).  

  • SteveRuis

    Once again we seem to be confusing a group of individuals with a team. We use the term "team" for say a group of cross country runners, but there is no team work per se. Such a "team's" standing is simply a sum of runners scores. I am talking about team sports (in which team members must work together with teammates, like lacrosse, etc.) with individual sports like golf and archery.

    Singles tennis is an individual sport. Doubles tennis is a team sport. Working with Individual athletes is different from work with teams of athletes. For example, if a coach spends all of his time working with just one of a doubles tennis pair, he/she is asking for trouble. No such problems are involved when coaching individuals.

    I am not referring to the use of the word "team" to represent all of the athletes in a variety of sports, I am addressingh how we coach different athletes in different situations.

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