There are 168 hours in a week. Private coaches have as little as 1 hour of an athlete's time during a week. That means 167 hours each week athletes are influenced by people, objects, and messages other than the coach. These messages can agree or disagree with your coaching. They can add to it or take away from it.
What is a coach to do to increase the impact of their message? How can a coach stay on the athletes mind even when they are away?
Here are 3 strategies to help coaches stay connected with the athlete away from the training session.
Meaningful Unique Messages
These messages are based on your vision and vocabulary as a coach. When athletes understand the reason and the words a coach uses, it makes it simpler for the athlete to relate to the coach. A coach who teaches athletes their vocabulary will expose the athlete to new experiences. New experiences create a stronger connection.
Training Improvement Practice
Think homework, but without saying homework. Training improvement practice can include such activities as a workout, reading an article, watching a video, sending a message, answering a question. Be creative in what you share.
The purpose is to provide the athlete with guidance that will help them develop and also keep connected with you as their coach.
Apply to Other Areas
As a coach, it is important to know what else the athlete and their family are involved in. Maybe they like science, have a favorite book, a favorite player, are going to a game, birthday, life changing event, etc. Know what's going on and help them connect the previous two strategies to other activities they are involved in.
There is no way to be with an athlete all the time, but that does not mean impact should be limited. Use these 3 strategies to positively stay on the athlete's mind even while they are away from you to build an even stronger connection. This connection will only enhance their development.
That's the aim as a coach.
What strategies have you used to increase the impact of training for the athletes you work with away from the training session?
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