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Do you have to be a hard coach to be successful? | Welcome and General | ConnectedCoaches

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Home » Groups » Welcome and General » blogs » Dan Cottrell » Do you have to be a hard coach to be successful?
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Emma Tomlinson, Richard Hicks and 4 others like this.

Comments (2)


I think a coach should be able to wear either hat when nexessary.

I recently started a new squad which has brought this question into focus for me.

Anyone that saw me coaching my old squad would think I was as soft as they come. There was a lot of fun and laughter which I was as much a part of as them.

Anyone watching my current group would probably think I was pretty tough. We’re getting there slowly, but they’re on a big learning curve at the moment and I need to be pretty firm with them.

The difference isn’t what has happened to me as a coach, it’s purely the circumstances in which I find myself. The new group aren’t used to structured training or putting themselves out of their comfort zone in terms of exploring the limits of their ability. Getting them to realise that a certain level of commitment is expected in return for the time and effort that I put in has proved challenging at times.

The old group were bought into the programme 100%. There weren’t any issues about them not wanting to do things or attendance. Obviously they had some sessions which they enjoyed less than others, but they accepted that they were a necessary part of the overall mix. If anyone stepped out of line, the group as a whole would pull them back in - I didn’t need to be a disciplinarian. In that context, I could afford to let there be a more playful environment, because the underlying commitment to the programme was always there. I think the best example is a few Halloweens ago - they decided to do a fancy dress session as they were going to be missing out on Halloween parties due to the clash with training - every single one of them made sure that they wore things in which they were capable of sprinting/hurdling in without any restriction - playful, but not compromising the importance of the training session.

 · Emma Tomlinson and Tony Rogers like this.
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Ian Milligan said:

Great article. Completely agree with it. I think that as a coach you set the standards and direction of progress. The team get an input into that but then it's a "journey" towards that objective. You don't change the objective or the standards you might just have to work hard to get there.

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