Improving Observation Skills

The strength and conditioning coaches from Singapore Sport Institute (SSI) – Ranald Joseph and Kelvin Chua conducted a great CCE (Continuing Coaching Education) workshop – Basics of Strength Training: Its Importance, Principles and Basic Movement Progressions last month. They were engaging and covered the Why, What and How-s of basic strength training. For NROC coaches who missed the session, keep a lookout for the next session in September!

This post isn’t about the content of their workshop though. It’s about what I’ve observed during the micro-coaching bits, specifically, when the participants got into small groups and took turns to play the role of coach to observe the basic squat and hinge movements of the athletes.

circle
“How are you supposed to make accurate observations when you are performing the exercises in a circle with your athletes?”

Almost every coach got into a circle with the participants/athletes and performed the exercises together. There were only two coaches who did not do so. One simply walked around the circle offering praises, and the other one got into positions where he could actually observe if the athletes were performing the movements correctly.

Now, the ability to make proper observations is a “bread and butter” coaching skill, and is taught in almost any coaching program. Hence, I was surprised with the behavior of the coaches – how are you supposed to make accurate observations when you are performing the exercises in a circle with your athletes?

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