Issue 98 - May 1997
We are all saying the same thing, we just say it in a different way. There is a fundamental contradiction in this statement that means as coaches we have to be careful that we are delivering the same message. We communicate our ideas through language and if our language is different then either our ideas are different or we run the risk of presenting them incorrectly.
Create the right environment for learning
A child learns to walk after about a year without even being able to say the word walk. This is largely due to the patience, persistence and encouragement of its parents. Learning is best achieved where the athlete is not under pressure. Where there is enough time to properly deal with the problems, and the coach and athlete persist in the process. The rewards should also be clear. The rower feels better and the boat goes faster.
Learning is the gaining of knowledge
You will need to avoid merely describing the perfect stroke to the rower or crew as they go along. Each rower must have an understanding of how they are going to make the boat go and be able to put it into practice. As a coach you will have to demonstrate to the rower the need to make the change. This must involve the rower feeling in some way better about what he's doing an
© Copyright Sean Bowden, 1997.
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