Coaching in a rep campaign means you have hardly any time to get the team prepared. We may fall into the trap thinking we need our players and team to be good in every facet of our sport, however we need to be selective on where we spend our time to ensure we get ‘bang for buck.’
As the saying goes, ‘if everything is important, then nothing is important.’ Our job as coaches is to decide what is important and spend our preparation time doing the important, high impact stuff, rather than trying to be good at everything. Think of being a sniper, rather than getting the shot gun out, hoping to hit everything.
- You Sport: what happens a lot? What will be easy to influence / implement?
- Your team profile: what strengths do we have? How can we utilise those strengths as much as possible?
- Tactical v technical: Do you spend time working on tactics or developing technical aspects? Or a combination of both?
- How can the analysis fit your ‘bang for buck?’
Whatever you decide, consider spending as much training time as possible in game-like situations, as this may better replicate the realities of your sport and accelerate cohesion between your players. Spending big chunks of time doing isolated drills and perfecting ‘four corners,’ may look nice, but is probably not going to transfer into a match (who can remember seeing players stand in a perfect square, in queues, behind cones, in a match before?). Food for thought anyway.
(This is #2 if a 6 part series of 'representative team coaching.')
Refer to 'Season Planning' from the Leading Coach Programme