- Reflect upon your last 5 practice sessions – to what extent (if at all) did they deviate from your practice plan for the session?
- How do you keep track of time during a practice session? Do you:
- use your watch?;
- use the scoreboard? Counting down or counting up?;
- delegate someone else to keep track of the time?
- Do you share goals for each practice session with your players? Do they have their own goals for practice sessions?
- Discuss with a colleague the advantages and disadvantages of using “performance goals” instead of “outcome goals”.
- Plan a practice session and note specifically for each activity:
- your assessment of whether it has a high, medium or low physical load;
- your assessment of whether it has a high, medium or low psychological load.
At the end of the practice, ask the players to rate each activity for physical and psychological load. Do their ratings agree with yours?
- Consider an activity that you commonly use in practice. How could you:
- decrease the physical or psychological load that the activity imposes;
- increase the physical or psychological load that the activity imposes;
- vary the activity if you are using it to introduce the skill;
- vary the activity if you are using it to replicate “game-like” pressure.
- Have someone video your practice, keeping the shot as wide as possible –
i.e. showing as much of the court as possible. As you watch the video, consider:
- how often are players standing and either listening to you or waiting for their turn?;
- when you speak, are you facing all the players?;
- note where you are standing during activities – does the camera angle show you things that you didn’t observe at the practice?
- Watch another team at practice and observe:
- how does the coach organize players into groups?;
- how often are players standing around waiting?;
- what are the teaching points being used? How clear are they to you?;
- how many different activities does the coach use?
Reflect upon your own sessions. Is there something that the coach did that you could incorporate into your coaching or that you should avoid doing?
- Exercise 7 can be particularly useful if you watch a practice session of another sport. If possible, discuss with the coach after the session why particular activities were used.