Jurgen Van Leeuwen
Coaches are humans believe it or not !
Players might not always see it that way but we have feelings and we respond to certain behaviours.
Now to maximise your time with your coach you will have to ensure you commit to a couple of things :
- you are curious and eager to try new things when your coach is making suggestions
- you show that show you actively listen and try to show that your taking information in. Carolina Marin still takes notes when she talks with her coach!
- you and your coach a share a couple of goals some very short term ones and perhaps one or two longer terms ones.
- if you have a bad day or you think you might have one you speak to your coach so can agree on a minimum effort level for that session. Coaches will help to still make the best of that time we understand you have more than just badminton to think about.
- you ask questions and share ideas no matter what they are. We love players that have questions! 🙂
- We coaches, appreciate not every player is the same and we will try to adapt where possible of course.
Think about all the things above in your next session and see where you could improve a little.
There is every chance you will get a positive response from us! Don’t forget we want you to be the best you can be.
Use their experiences
Definitely need to get the most out of your coach.
So for me, I really listened to the advice they gave and follow them as much as possible to reap the rewards. Ask lots of questions especially if they used to play at a high level. You never know you may be in a difficult situation and yet they may have been through a similar situation that could help you in how to tackle the problem.
It's a collaboration, not a competition
I think that trusting what your coach is doing is really important to develop the relationship.
Having this trust will allow your coach to be creative and challenge boundaries which may lead to breakthroughs in your training.
But also be critical. Ask your coach why you're practicing in certain ways and give your input as to how it could be improved. There is no perfect way to coach nor train as it varies from person to person. It's important not to make anyone right or wrong - it's a collaboration between player and coach and you're both in it together (not to prove each other right or wrong!)
Talk to them !
Ask them questions, hopefully, they will ask you if you have any 🙂
Engage with them and try and understand what they mean. Never assume you know what they mean without using some questions. Most coaches like questions.
If they don’t then either you asked them at the wrong point in time or they are not doing a good job. (Normally it’s always a good time to ask coaches questions within reason)
Honesty is a key factor
Getting the most out of your coach is crucial to improving faster, an interesting perspective on this is to realise that your coach is (hopefully) trying to get the best out of you. How would they analyse you each day?
Your relationship with them is so important - and honesty is a key factor in it. You need to analyse your coaches - what are their strengths and weaknesses as a coach? How can you get them to perform their best?
Once you have this approach you will realise you and your coach are on the same journey and the speed of your progression will increase
Be daring in your communications
It is important to first understand how to communicate with your coach. Understand which way works best for you to absorb and learn. Be daring to ask, demonstrate to the coach to fully understand it.
Buy into the process
Unless you buy in to your coach then there will always be something holding you back.
Of course, you have to be lucky enough to find a coach that you feel confident enough to buy into. But I find that it’s quite common these days for players and parents to flit from coach to coach. We call it finding the ‘gold dust.’ But actually, this inconsistency can be to a players detriment.
So buy into the process fully or you won’t get the benefits.
Don't wait for official meetings
The little things are very important. There is no way you can absorb or fully understand everything from one hour touch points, so I found it very beneficial to catch up for dinners, lunches etc and find extra time for questions. Please don't wait for the official meetings
It depends on their coaching philosophy
We could say the obvious 'ask them questions, communicate well' etc however there is so much more to it than this!
We believe it really depends on who your coach is and what their coaching philosophy is. We've worked with some coaches that have an authoritarian style of coaching and do not like to be challenged. And we're not saying this is completely 'wrong'; in many of these cases, the coach has a great amount of knowledge and experience and has wholehearted belief in their methods. And these methods can create 'success' for the right individual. So it also depends on the individual and what you like in a coach.
We believe it's important to develop a good relationship, based on trust.
Every player has to trust their coach and that also they would do anything it takes to help you to reach the next level and your overall ambitions in the sport. We need to have a complete understanding of why we are doing a practice and how it will help us in a match, and they need to know this. We think your coach also needs to have a full appreciation of your strengths and weaknesses, both on and off the court. This will enable them to do their best to help you with your weaknesses and double down on your strengths.
So have that sit down chat and talk through these things (and don't stop at just these) with your coach so that they know how to get the best out of you and hopefully then you can get the best out of your coach.
If you have more than one coach then repeat the process! And hopefully, you trust that they have your best interests at the forefront of their mind, unfortunately, a lot of coaches don't for one reason or the other.
- Challenge them to challenge you!
- Try to bring out their passion and get a feel for 'why' they are coaching. Hopefully, this isn't because it is an easy route for them! And for many of us if they don't have this 'passion' then it may be better to look elsewhere!
Thanks to everyone for their time and considered thoughts
If you'd like to read more about how to work with your coach then click this image and see if you agree with me 🙂
If you'd like to join this expert team and start sharing your knowledge, send me a message and I'll send you some questions