Many people aspire to leading high performance sporting teams, organisations and national sporting bodies. However, most are unprepared for the real challenges of leadership – particularly of leading effectively in an environment of pressure, stress and high public expectations.
There is a tribe in the highlands of Papua New Guinea who have never seen modern technology, who could not even imagine using the latest electronic tools, who can not comprehend western society concepts of computing, social media, high speed Internet links, laser technology or satellite navigation.
This tribe, believes that the best way – the only way – the way everyone must adopt to cut down a tree is to make an axe by lashing a sharp rock to a piece of wood. This knowledge has been passed down from generation to generation for centuries….this tribe knows for certain that the only way to cut down a tree is to use a hand made stone ax.
And then, one day, through the forest, comes a man from the USA carrying a chain saw…….
The term “Sporting Widow” (or widower) is almost a cliche in high performance sport as many, many relationships have fallen apart in the industry due to the demands and pressures of travel, preparation, competition, training camps etc etc.
This article is for all my coaching, sports science, sports medicine and sports management colleagues (and their long suffering partners and families) written after many years chatting over beers and lamenting the challenges of working on the road, away from loved ones trying to balance success in high performance sport with a successful relationship.
There seems to be a high performance program or high performance system in every country in the world….but what is high performance sport?
I often get asked, what’s the difference between sport and high performance sport.
Read the next 800 words and find out.
High Performance on a Budget – can you create a high performance environment without spending any money?
As soon as someone mentions the words “high-performance” in sport, people start running for their cheque books and credit cards. The most commonly held view about high-performance sport is that you need significant investment and resources to run a successful high performance sports program. However, money alone does not guarantee success in high performance sport and almost any coach or Club can create a sustainable high performance environment by targeting and prioritising their resources on the right things at the right time. This article discusses how to prioritise in high performance sport and how to target the things that matter: the things that will make a difference where it really matters….the performance of your athletes
High Performance sport is founded on a relatively simple equation: you either win or you lose.
A critical aspect in understanding the “losing process” is to find the answer to this question….were you outplayed or out-talented?
Gone are the days of the “Guru” sports coaches: the “Super Coach” of the past has lost his powers to the kryptonite of modern sport – i.e. the increased complexity and sophistication of high performance sports environments.
Sure, the great names of coaching have all been “one man bands” – strong, decisive, authoritarian, personal leadership focused head coaches who controlled every aspect of the team’s performance.
However, high performance sport has developed at an incredible rate over the past twenty years and the knowledge and skills required to win a high performance sporting competition are greater than any one person can bring to the table.
Think of the advances in performance science, sports science, sports medicine, analysis, IT, nutrition, psychology and technology since the 1980s.
How can we expect that any one person can be the expert in all performance areas plus coach the team, deal with the media, work with Club Board and Executive, recruit new players, talk to sponsors, meet the fans etc etc etc?
So – the Coaching Team and High Performance Team concepts are born.
The High Performance Sport Checklist – Part Two of the List of 50 Things you Must be doing to Succeed in High Performance Sport.
Score Key: 0-10: High performance sport is not for you. Maybe try your hand at pavement painting or hole digging or grass mowing or something else which does not require the consistent application of excellence. 11-20: You might dream about being high performance and talk about being high performance, but as for actually understanding it,
If you read one post today – read this one….the Top Ten Solid Gold Tips for Success in High Performance Sport…or everything you ever wanted to know about creating and sustaining success in high performance sport in 500 words or less.