Some of the best coaches to have ever walked the planet were known as coaches who emphasized the details. Details have always been emphasized by the best. No stones are left unturned when it comes to planning and organizing every aspect for their team. John Wooden, for example, was known for not only being a winner, but for spending time with his players on some of the basic tasks such as teaching them how to properly put their socks on to prevent blisters. Coach Wooden also spent most of his day planning the days practice. Every aspect of practice was planned for and organized to run the same way that Coach Wooden envisioned.
The best coaches also embrace the process. It is the day to day grinding of helping their teams prepare for every little challenge that their teams may face in any situation. Great coaches also stay in the moment. It isn’t necessarily the next game or the next couple of games. It is the details of improving for the next drill at practice, or the next play or shift during a game.
As I transition back to the collegiate strength and conditioning environment, I find myself planning training sessions well in advance. Not to say that I didn’t previously. However, the difference is now I have the opportunity to take entire teams through training sessions from start to finish. I try to always have a vision of how the session will flow. How much time should I dedicate to foam rolling? How long will they take to go through hurdle mobility? At what point in the session will they progress to the power racks? Etc. Everything from when they walk in the door through their last repetition of the last set of the last exercise is planned for accordingly.
The longer I do this, I realize that it really is all about the process. Its trying to do the little things better over and over again on a daily basis. The better athletes that I have been fortunate enough to work with over the years always embraced this. They enjoyed the monotony of doing the little things continuously to help them succeed.
Strength and Conditioning coaches should have a plan every time their athletes come through the door. They need to be prepared to help them get the next rep and/or the next set. Training sessions need to be scripted out so that nothing is left out or not prioritized- everything is important. “Today is the only day. Yesterday is gone” is a John Wooden quote that I found on the internet. Strength Coaches need to coach and help their athletes through every little aspect of their program on a daily basis.