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Decision making in players at u9's and 10's. | Coaching Children (Ages 5-12)

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Posted in: All other coaching children topics

Decision making in players at u9's and 10's.

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  • Hi everyone...

    I think decision making at this age is a vital skill for a young player. I would like to know how everyone feels about decision making at a young age and how you create sessions to progress decision making.

    Regards

    Dan 

     · Rob Maaye, Tony Worrall and 2 others like this.
     
  • Hi Dan,

    Welcome to Connected Coaches.

    I think decision making is a huge part of kids' development and the best way to help under 9's/10's is to give them lots of opportunities to play small-sided games - 2v2, 3v3, 4v4, Futsal and 7v7 games will all help and, importantly, the children will have fun!

    Cheers,

    Andy

     · Rob Maaye, Jon Woodward and 2 others like this.
     
  • Hi Dan,

    I find the best way to develop decision making is to give the players lot of choices, challenges are a massive part of decision making as players have to think about how they will achieve success..

    I delivered a practice a few weeks back for an U9 team with 12 players, the focus of the session was in game management, now with U9's you're probably thinking this is too much too soon? 

    This wouldbe true if i ws to start talking to them about tactics and strategies. 

    The session starts with an arrival activity to develop speed of thought which will help players make decisions quicker,

    Pick a subject, for example football teams

    Rules: cant say the same team twice or repeat what your partner has already said

    In pairs players have 1 ball to share

    They stand about 5 yards apart throwing the ball to each other 

    As they receive the ball they say the name of a team and throw the ball back as quick as possible

    first one to stall, or say umm loses that point..  

    Then let them come up with heir own subjects (their decisions)

    Then we played 5min scenario matches 6v6 green team and black team 

    Example: Last game of the season green team you are 2points clear at the top of the league, black team you are in second place

    If its a draw, greens win the league, blacks must win to overtake greens... 

    Give players 1min to discuss as a team their plan and how they will execute it

    They coaching style I would use would be Q+A 

    Coach

    "Simon why did you decide to cross it hard and low instead of in the air"

    Player

    "Because only Daniel was in the box and he was being marked by Henry who is taller so the defender would have probably won the header"

    Not only has the player made a decision based on the specific situation but he knows why he made it, which is very important!

    Hope this helps.

    Lance

    Alpha football Intelligence 

    Head coach

     · Rob Maaye, Andrew Beaven and 3 others like this.
     
  • Hi Dan!

    Decision making is vital throughout all age groups. But you're right in saying it is really important at a young age. It is imperetive to give young athletes/players the tools to be able to cope in a realistic environment.

    There are several ways to do this within a training environment. One of which might be overtly questioning the young players, this may help you gain an understanding of their knowledge - so you can cater your session to their understanding.

    Another method may be more of a guided discovery session. Whereby the session will provides lots of opportunity for players to make decisions. In essence, the session facilitates the learning.

    To conclude, decision making is vital at any age. Especially if it is in a sport that requires optimal decision making. The key is to not overload the players with the answers and allow them the opportunity to discover the answer themselves. Furthermore, giving them the tools and independents to be a confident and effective player.

     · Jon Woodward, Elly Moore and 4 others like this.
     
  • Welcome, Dan – it’s a good question.

    I would contend that effective decision making is a dynamic, situation-specific skill.

    So I believe that you have to coach the process of decision making rather than (only) practicing making good decisions (if that makes sense).

    Less “when to play the short pass to feet, and when to go long”, because conditions and opposition in practice will never exactly replicate the next match, or a game in 18 months’ time; more ”what cues do you need to make the right decision?”

    As both Sara and Lance said – lots of questions.

    Almost any practice that demands (and rewards) good decision making will help to develop awareness and confidence; even a bad choice is a learning opportunity.

    In cricket, we use “traffic light cricket” to work on decision making in running. After hitting the ball, the batter has to decide how far to run. Hit the ball close to a fielder, and run a short distance to a green marker and score 1; hit it a little further, or into a gap between fielders, and run further, to a yellow marker, and score 2; or decide to run further still (red marker) and score 3, if you think you have the time to get all the way out and back.

    So the right decision is always the one that gives the best return (runs scored) for the least risk (chance of a run out).

    Immediate, tangible feedback, rather than (just) the coach’s subjective feedback. It’s a good pass because the forward had space to go on and score/time to put her foot on the ball without a direct challenge.

     · Rob Maaye, Elly Moore and 2 others like this.
     
  • Great question Dan - and welcome to the party!

    Not sure I can add too much more to everyone else's comments, but I think there are key considerations:

    - don't create too many practice situations with too many (very subjective i know!!) decisions to made at once, but keep the number small so the children can get comfortable and confident with making decisions

    - help to understand the 'why' and 'what' of decision making - why did you decide to do that, and what was the outcome?

    - its a cyclic process! Once a decision is made, it leads to another having to be made

    - give them confidence and the autonomy of making decisions - we all get it wrong at some time, but it goes back to the 'why' and 'what'...and reflect on them

     

     

     · Derek Maybury, Dan Watson and 4 others like this.
     
  • It's always an important factor that at this age decision making is of huge importance to children. At age 8 and 9 their motor skills are developing and they start to think more in game play other than I have to go get that ball I must have that ball. Kids are starting to look for space and the best place they can move to to best receive the ball. Small sided games like 2 v 2 or 3 v 3 are a good option as is 4 v 2 unequal sides. A big match involving all with the pitch zoned out has helped my under 8's with the importance of using all the space and knowing how best to use the position they are playing in. At this age it's important that we make it fun AND challenging for them. Hardest part always is match time when you have parents on the sidelines shouting out their own instructions taking decision making out of the kids hands which is a bug bear for any coach.

     · Rob Maaye likes this.
     
  • as previosuly mentioned definitely bring in decisin making for the team but only on a small scale to start with, don't ram it down their throat every session.  We have done the scenario thing before with the last game of the season but it ended in arguing so had to scrap it.  Another game we have played which was part of the Youth Module is where you split into 2 teams with a goal either end and equal defenders and keepers either end. The other team have 5 separate chances to score but it is their choice how they play each chance. i.e. they can have a 2v1 in their favour but that will only score 1 point if they score, they could have a 1v1 which would score them 3 points etc etc. Once they have had their 5 goes you swap sides over. (hope that makes sense!!)  Think it was called Risky Business in the Youth Module course.

     · Rob Maaye and Dan Watson like this.
     
  • Yes Steve.. I have used risky business before.. the lads love it. 

     
  • The key, for me at this age, is the question and answer approach during coaching.  The coach keeps asking open questions:

    After a 1v1 exercise:

    What did you do to get past the other player?
    Anyone do anything different?
    Which do you think is the most effective?
    As the defender, which was the most difficult for you?
    Let's do it again, and each of you try something differnt.

    [afterwards] Was that easier or harder?  Why?
    What does the defender think?
    When would you use that technique and when would you use the others?

    The coach has not told them how to do anything.  The players have worked it out themselves, and learnt from each other.  They are engaged in the session and thinking for themselves.  Without specific skill instruction, they are discovering for themselves how to do things.

    Of course, the coach is guiding them towards the preferred results, but you want creativity in the players, so nothing is ruled out.

    Sometimes, the coach needs to step in and be more instructive, but if it is done as "OK, great ideas kids, but what if we try this....", then get feedback as whether the coaches way is more effectve.

    Gradually, as you begin this technique you see players more engaged in the session, and confident in their own decision making.  No answers from the players are wrong, just "interesting".

     · Rob Maaye and Elly Moore like this.
     
  • Hi Liz ... Thanks for your input in my question . I always like to hear different ways of how different coaches put their explanations of decision making across . Thanks everyone .

    Regards 

    Dan

    On 07/07/16 6:02 AM, Liz Brewster said:

    The key, for me at this age, is the question and answer approach during coaching.  The coach keeps asking open questions:

    After a 1v1 exercise:

    What did you do to get past the other player?
    Anyone do anything different?
    Which do you think is the most effective?
    As the defender, which was the most difficult for you?
    Let's do it again, and each of you try something differnt.

    [afterwards] Was that easier or harder?  Why?
    What does the defender think?
    When would you use that technique and when would you use the others?

    The coach has not told them how to do anything.  The players have worked it out themselves, and learnt from each other.  They are engaged in the session and thinking for themselves.  Without specific skill instruction, they are discovering for themselves how to do things.

    Of course, the coach is guiding them towards the preferred results, but you want creativity in the players, so nothing is ruled out.

    Sometimes, the coach needs to step in and be more instructive, but if it is done as "OK, great ideas kids, but what if we try this....", then get feedback as whether the coaches way is more effectve.

    Gradually, as you begin this technique you see players more engaged in the session, and confident in their own decision making.  No answers from the players are wrong, just "interesting".

     
  • Hi Dan

    Just reinforce the thoughts from what has been posted by others. Create rich decision making enviroments in the sessions you provide - guiding as opposed to telling and recognising that making mistakes is all part of the learning process. TGfU is an excellent guide to use and you can also get the APP for your phone with a host of ideas for activities.

    Best wishes

    Richard

     · Dan Watson likes this.
     
  • article attached

     

     · Dan Watson likes this.
     
  • Thanks Richard.. 

    I will find this very useful ..

    cheers Dan

     · Richard Cheetham likes this.
     
  • Hi Richard 

    what is the app for the phone called..

    cheers dan

     
  • Hi Dan

    Sorry for the late reply, if you put in TGFU in your APP store the first one that comes up is PE Activities - PE Games database by Mel Hamada- this is the one i found very useful.

    Best wishes

    richard

     
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