Jan 29, 2015Strong Values
By Jason Benguche, MS, CSCS, PES
Coaches at every level in today’s society are performance driven. Wins and losses are the ultimate gauge of success in our profession. With this in mind, we must remember that unlike the playbooks and systems of our head coaches although similar, the physical and mental development of an athlete takes time. Here are a few concrete values that help guide us with the football program at Georgia Tech.
With every head coaching change in major college football, there is one common ritual: The official press conference. After thanking the athletic director, family and fans of the particular city the new head coach goes into the goals and standards of his future program. In determining these, the staff has a vision of where the team is and the potential of what the team can be. Here are some of the concrete values that a strength coach can bring to the table:
Every coach values an athlete’s ability to do the “ordinary things extraordinary.” These are things that can be as simple as lining up behind a given cone for agility movements or as difficult as some find to wake up at 5:15 am for 6 o’clock workouts. In the strength coaches everyday training program, this is a value that cannot be ignored for it can translate into poor conduct both on the field and off if not consistently enforced.
Unlike individual sports, team sports have multiple athletes of varying personalities and degrees of maturation. This can make it is easy for individuals to point fingers at others within the team. Consequently, the value of personal accountability must be held to the highest standard. This can be translated to training in judging individual efforts on a day to day basis.
When one individual is lacking in effort or not doing their job to the highest standard, the team suffers the consequences of those actions. The thought that everyone is responsible for their own actions can lead to great things when it comes to team performance. Only when everyone is doing their own job can a team be firing on all cylinders.
Toughness simply put is the ability to endure hardship and resist adversity. In training, developing this quality occurs on a day to day basis, and mainly in a three part system.
In developing physically, an athlete needs to believe that their abilities can get them through the tough times ahead. Next, our role as coaches is to motivate the athletes. Teaching athletes to push through previously defined limits is a key component to success to.
Lastly, an athlete’s ability to focus on the task at hand ultimately carries over to their success. However the strength and conditioning program is designed, it ultimately needs to tap into these three aspects for athletes to perform on game day with a will to win.
One of the vital roles of a strength coach involves instilling the goals and standards that are created and established by the head coach and sport staff. We as strength coaches have the notable duty of working with our athletes for a longer period of time throughout the school year than any other group of coaches or support staff. This gives us the opportunity to continually work on not only the physical aspects of training but with equal importance reminding our athletes of our goals and standards for success.
Jason Benguche, MS, CSCS, PES, is Assistant Director of Player Development for Football at Georgia Tech.
Great article on coaching and standards. Good luck this off season. – Rich Jacobs M.S., SCCC, CSCS, PES, ACSM Strength & Conditioning Assistant Coach Xavier University