Our player vision starts with the term ‘Performer.’ For us, this is a critical piece. Every coach knows players who have technical skills, athleticism and multiple talents but never function to their potential in competition. Performers come up with the performance when it counts.
Our ‘Mission’ to empower players to be a performer is:
“To transform players’ beliefs, values, mindsets, attitudes and energy through the elements of Head. Heart & Legs.”
Empowering players to use what they have in competition requires a systematic and intentional process from the coach. You need to meet the player wherever they are and journey with them to higher levels.
Quite the contrast from the typical ‘performance’ coaching, which is about technical perfection and high intensity in an environment that fosters a ‘you are not good enough yet’ mentality with feedback mainly focused on what they are doing wrong.
For a helpful additional acecoach.com article on Positive feedback, click here.
We can package all the qualities listed in the mission into the labels ‘Head’, ‘Heart’ & ‘Legs’:
Head: ‘Selective attention to task-relevant details.’
This includes the thoughts, focus, and inner dialogue/self-talk a player engages in. Training for this involves high tactical intention for every shot a player hits and good in-between point routines to be mentally and emotionally prepared to play a point.
Heart: ‘Being a confident competitor by applying full effort under adversity.’
This is usually connected to a player’s effort and adopting a ‘never give up’ or ‘I can handle it’ mentality. The coach trains this by ensuring the player knows they unequivocally believe in them. Challenging situations are created through movement, modified targets or modified scoring. The coach helps players overcome adversity through applying effort.
Legs: ‘The intensity, energy and desire a player brings to the execution of their shots.’
It is the ‘work ethic’ a player brings to the court developed through practice that makes intensity, energy & desire a habit.
An effective performance coach can keep the atmosphere positive while pushing them beyond their comfort zone.
If you don’t feel your players are achieving the vision of being a ‘Performer,’ this could be a helpful mission to adopt.
Here is a much more detailed article exploring the many aspects of developing a performer including examples of training drills.