Is patience over-rated?

I do quite a bit* of coaching with younger children, 7 and younger, right down to weekly groups with 3-4 year olds. Sessions can be messy, they can be loud, sometimes they must look pretty chaotic.

In truth, I really do quite enjoy the chaos (sometimes). I’ll let activities run on, if the players are engaging in some sort of “constructive” play.

Probably the most frequent feedback I receive, from parents and fellow coaches, regards “patience” — how I must have incredible depths of patience to work with the young groups, how much the children enjoy the freedom they get to play and learn.

And I also get the counter-statement — “it’s OK to be firmer with the kids, if they misbehave” (i.e. “you really are too patient, sometimes”).

I am coming to the conclusion that patience by itself might not be the virtue that it is held up as.

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Coach education — minimum set?

I recently updated my CV (no, I am not applying for new jobs, just a periodic review and trim) and it is now overflowing with CPD courses — mostly interesting, and all relevant in some way to the work I am doing, but I suspect that only a few will actually change how I coach (for the better, hopefully).

Which set me wondering about the “minimum set” of qualifications required to call yourself a coach?

What are the most important lessons from coach education — formal qualification, ongoing CPD, informal learning — lessons that have fundamentally shaped the way I coach?

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Make the sport fit the child, not the child fit the sport — thoughts on iCoachKids

Really interesting video from the iCoachKids project, on “making the sport fit the child, not the child fit the sport”

Some of the concepts discussed might appear obvious, but I thought it was very helpful to see how the video (and the associated activities on the MOOC) provides a framework to think about why and how to adapt and differentiate activities in children’s sport.

Continue reading “Make the sport fit the child, not the child fit the sport — thoughts on iCoachKids”