If there’s anything we realized after a year in a pandemic, it’s that we don’t know what life holds for us. For achievers like athletes, entering 2020 was like helplessly seeing the previous year’s highs oscillate with uncertainty. Several tournaments and meets had to be postponed indefinitely.
It’s sad, but we’re facing an all-time low in the sports industry. It’s one of those global endeavors marginalized by the ongoing crisis. Students whose academic future depend on their athletic craft and professional athletes alike have had to face this unprecedented reality the hard way.
Sports organizations, such as university teams, staggered for ways to make training plausible amid lockdowns and gathering restrictions by coming up with virtual training programs, for instance. Innovations had to be made to keep athletes in their best shape, but this will never equate to the benefits of being coached in person. This sudden shift in the team’s disposition has proven to be difficult to adjust to.
How often do we hear about unmotivated athletes? The statistic has most probably more than doubled since last year. This leaves team coaches with new and unique challenges that include how to keep every member figuratively on top of their game.
Coaches are the best teachers, the ship’s captains that keep the team from sinking, as they say. How do they stay true to this label and keep their team motivated and intact in a sporting landscape that, although is steadily going back to normal, still has drastically transformed in many ways? We impart to you some good ways:
Better Yourself as a Coach
You can enroll in online fitness programs like canfitpro CECs to refresh yourself or learn new exercises and re-certify yourself as a coach. This will then enhance how you can train your team if you’re either distance or personal training. If going back to the training hall still proves to be difficult in your area, you can incorporate the same modules in the CEC courses into your virtual training sessions.
Dedicate one day of the week to have an hour-long (more if needed) meeting with your team to plan out the activities for the rest of the week. This can be done via available online conferencing platforms. For these once-a-week meetings, it’s important to set a fixed itinerary that should always start with a group huddle, a segment for an inspirational talk or watching an inspirational video altogether, and a catching-up session before proceeding with the agenda of the meeting and other pertinent issues that need to be raised and resolved in the presence of all members.
Having an email group to send out helpful content is also a healthy practice. Of course, it’s important to set house rules to avoid unwarranted conduct, such as sharing obscene content or unruly behavior. Other than that, the members are free to share motivational videos, quotes, articles, and other forms of content to one another, and not just necessarily those related to the sport. Applying a holistic approach to training is what the team needs now more than ever.
Empower Athletes to Check on One Another’s Performance
Being apart might take a hit on each athlete’s motivation to push themselves. That’s why you as a coach should constantly remind your team to do frequent performance check-ins on one another. It can be as simple as messaging one another if they’ve already done their morning workout, if they’re keeping up with their prescribed diet, or if their speed or form has improved since last week.
Virtual Team Training
Although nothing can beat training with one another in the flesh, virtual training still offers the benefit of freedom of location for every member. This could be easy for athletes with proprietary training equipment that imitate the actual sport, such as kayaking. However, this proves to be harder for contact sports, such as volleyball, wherein the athlete can practice only with a partner. Some coaches have made up for this by assigning strengthening yoga exercises instead.
Performance Monitoring Mechanisms
As you can judge their performance only by seeing them, you can give your members homework that includes filming themselves performing their workout and practicing their moves and form. As a way to incentivize them, share these videos on your social media, but also make sure they consent to it. Likewise, constantly provide them feedback after seeing these videos and assign to them more feats that they need to reach within a certain timeline.
Follow These Tips
Things are already tough as they are, these tips will help you and your team prove that no barrier could break your union. Be that pillar of strength for each of your team members by not only pushing them to reach record speeds or strengths. Show that they can look up to you as a model in life.