Coaches are not magicians and do not perform wizardry. Changes in coaching do not often result in immediate results because the same new brand of play, new philosophy and new culture all take time to take root and develop. For the most part, the coach will seem tactically inept as players yo-yo between the new direction and what they are accustomed to.
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A team’s culture is a set of repeated behaviours that reflects the team’s values, beliefs, it is its collective character on and off the field. Therefore, a team’s culture is the product of collective habitual behaviours and routines. A team’s brand of play, whether a team employs a conservative or aggressive approach in their tactics is based on the team’s habits.
A number of players have reported that they have felt mental strain from being in bio-secure bubbles for extended periods. It is always difficult when all you have in terms of physical contact are your teammates. But, there is a silver lining.
In a match where our team is leading or dominating so much that victory seems certain, we own the victory. We count on it and perceive it in the same manner that we count on our ownership of a physical object. We are endowed with victory and we are unwilling to part with it. Therefore, when a victory that we thought was ours is unexpectedly taken away, we are devastated.
The importance of understanding is not limited to individual team members, it also extends to subgroups. A lot of times when people think of building trust and cohesiveness in diverse teams, the common standpoint is that subgroups are detrimental to team culture and cohesiveness. The belief is that “fault lines,” or divisions based on race, gender, income, age, religion, and so on give rise to conflict and distrust among players in different subgroups.
Sometimes looking at head-to-head statistics or success in the leagues or tournaments that teams or athletes participate paints a false picture of a rivalry. One team might have more wins or more success, and looking formidable on paper, however, that does not take away intensity or the motivation to outdo from the rivalry.
Technical perfection wins the prodigy adoration, but if the prodigy does not eventually go beyond this, and develops a real-world application of those technical abilities, they will sink into oblivion. After all, technical soundness is not enough. Players with unsound techniques go on to make it big if they manage to adapt their styles to match situations. Sound technique needs to be coupled with creativity, that is the only way that it can be adaptable to differing conditions.
Once told of the stereotype, the athletes will be consumed by the idea, and an intense drive to discredit the stereotype that they invest, unnecessarily, more brainpower in attempting to debunk the stereotype and forget to simply focus on what they are good at.
One of the most common situations where self-consciousness is likely to take hold is when an athlete faces established stars or players whom they admire. Immediately, they are caught between awe, admiration of their opposition and the impostor syndrome. They are starstruck and drowned with doubts on whether they are good enough to face this pedigree of opposition.
Play the tape “When you get home, watch the videotape. Watch it before you go to sleep and when you wake up.” That is what Bob Bowman used to tell the teenage Michael Phelps each day after practice. Even before races, Bowman would tell Phelps, “Get the videotape ready.” The tape that the World Swimming