Coaching on the biggest stage - Toyko
We are here live at the biggest stage in 2021 and we are going to coach at the finals of the discus. Top athletes have crazy things going on. Some big-time athletes are ending up with covid. There is just craziness everywhere.
Still, we have to focus on how to coach at the pinnacle of sports, the biggest stage, and event in the history of athletics. What can we do as a coach?
1. Establish The Goals
Immediately, trying to coach athletes at elite levels requires establishing goals and being on the same page. Whatever is determined to be serious competition for our specific athletes. We need to lay out the goals and the goals need to be communicated.
For example, at this biggest stage, the pinnacle of sport, we sat down with all of our athletes and set our goals. First, we need to make it through qualifying. Once through qualifying, we can analyze the competition and how the athlete competed. Then we can take the next step and set the next goals.
These are key factors. When the coach and the athlete are on the same page with what the goals are going to be, they both can bring the correct energy into the equation. We can provide positive feedback and both work towards the same goal.
Now if the coach and athlete’s goals don’t align we have an issue. For instance, the coach has the goal to make it through qualification and the athlete vocalizes they are just happy being on the biggest stage, now the expectations are different. Not good.
The big aspect behind goal setting is making sure the expectations are spelled out so everyone is on the exact same page.
2. Know The Distractions
As a coach, we need to know what can distract our athletes. We coaches can’t be in for the rude awakening because of lack of preparation. We need to be ready to coach on the biggest stage. We need to understand distractions as a coach to be best prepared, but even more, we need to be prepared for distractions to uplift our athletes.
Travel will be a distraction. Family will be a distraction. Media will be a distraction. Social media will be a distraction. Friends will be a distraction. People and competitors at the competition will be a distraction. We coaches need to tell the athletes to not worry about what everyone else is doing.
We have to be able to travel to the biggest event in sport. We need to plan around those stressors. We need to plan to handle the time zone change. We need to plan to adapt to the different food.
We need to set expectations with family. We need to decide how often we want to be engaging with family and how often we don’t want to be talking to family. We need to make the same considerations with talking to media and the same with posting on social media.
We need to focus on the joint set goals that have been established. Coaching on the biggest stage we need to be on the same page to remove a lot of the distractions or have the coach to manage the distractions.
3. Have A Plan
Not having a full-blown plan with everything laid out ahead of time that makes the coach and athletes prepared for every little detail is non-negotiable. A plan is a must. The best athletes and coaches in the world sit down and come up with a full-blown plan for how to execute goals, avoid distractions, and compete on the biggest stage to accomplish the task at hand.
On the biggest stage, we planned out everything in a worksheet. We discussed and wrote down when to check out when to eat when to travel when to get physical work, what time for mobility and warming up, time to be at the call room, and what time to take pre-workout. We have a sequence laid out.
From there, the next step gets into details. We write down what type of mobility work to be done, what type of warm-up movement to complete, what to focus on from a competitive perspective, all the way down to what exactly will be eaten and what will be in the bag. We even make sure to know exactly how much tape to have and what different pairs of shoes to have available.
All these little things go into the plan. We go ahead and set alarms on the phone to remove all the distractions to make the process as comfortable as possible to achieve the established goals.
Jointly setting goals allows coaches and athletes to understand each other’s expectations. Coaches remove distractions to make the process as comfortable as possible for athletes so everything flows. Tremendous things can be accomplished on the biggest stage when everyone is on the same page. People can go as deep as possible when everyone is on the same page. And when everyone is on the same page, great things can be accomplished.
Dane Miller is the owner and founder of Garage Strength Sports Performance. He works with a select handful of clients on building comprehensive programs for fitness and nutrition. Several times a year he leads a workshop for coaches, trainers, and fitness enthusiasts.