The future of cricket coaching – what next for coaches working in schools and clubs? (from December 2013)

What game will the players be playing in 10-20 years’ time?

And what should we be coaching now, to prepare players for the future?

This post originally appeared in Grassroot Magazine, December 2013.

Continue reading The future of cricket coaching – what next for coaches working in schools and clubs? (from December 2013)

A Constraint-Led Approach – a new addition to the coaching toolkit?

I am (I call myself) a cricket coach – I work with people who want to play “better” cricket, however “better” might be defined.

In that role, I try to help players to develop their playing techniques, and, along the way, to build individual motivation and resilience.  Occasionally, I will talk with them about (appropriate) physical development – play other sports to develop all-round physicality; don’t build so much muscle in the gym that you lose flexibility.

But I am also interested in how to become a better coach, which has led me to follow a range of conversations and blogs on coaching pedagogy.

I am not going to pretend that I understand the concept of nonlinear pedagogy (yet), and my exploration of socio cultural constraints within coaching probably missed any number of (academic) points.

But a series of posts (including this, and this, both from ConnectedCoaches.org) on applying the Constraint-Led Approach (CLA) in coaching has piqued my interest.  Coaches are encouraged to modify the drill or game to force the player(s) to develop enhanced responses.

Continue reading A Constraint-Led Approach – a new addition to the coaching toolkit?

#AllStarsCricket – good for the future of the game

To Lord’s on Sunday, for an ECB presentation on their new programme for 5-8 year olds – All Stars Cricket.

The promise is ambitious.

All Stars Cricket is a nationwide programme developed by the ECB and our Elite Coach Development team that aims to inspire 5 to 8 year olds to take up cricket and join your club!

All Stars Cricket enables children to acquire the skills to play the game and connects them to England cricket heroes. We will provide your club with everything you need to deliver an unique experience for kids and their parents.

Active and direct support from ECB to recruit players and volunteers, and the added incentive that “the programme will be unbureacratic and will not require the level of training of coaches as clubs are normally used to” combine to make All Stars Cricket very attractive to Clubs struggling to attract young players into the game.

The pitch was strong on “player experience” and engagement (both good things, essential, in fact).  Less clear (at this, very early, stage) on progression and retention of players.

But at first sight, All Stars Cricket definitely looks like a winner!

Continue reading #AllStarsCricket – good for the future of the game