Kids play matches and games in school at lunchtime, do they use bibs?
Kids go to watch a match with their parents, meet some friends, start playing their own match, do they use bibs?
Kids arrive early for training and play a match, do they use bibs?
At a recent review session of the year gone by, one of the requests from the players was to “use bibs and cones more in training sessions”. This led to a discussion among the management team. Management had agreed to not use bibs in training matches and activities where there were 2 or more teams. Now, there is a problem. Should the coach give the players what they want, or should the coach give the players what they need? What they want vs what they need are 2 different things.
So, why would you train without bibs?
- Increases verbal and non-verbal communication.
- Challenges the players to be more aware of their surroundings when in possession and not in possession.
- It demands proactive communications from team mates to assist the player in possession
- Increases the number of decisions a player must make during the games.
- Requires the player to analyse the problems they face and find a solution
We want to challenge them on the pitch, to think quicker, diagnose the problem in front of them and find the solution to the problem. If we train in a tougher environment than we would encounter in a match, then the match should become easier for the players.
Albert Einstein once said “What is right is not always popular and what is popular is not always right!”. Will we continue with the no bibs policy with the team? Yes, we will. But we will also ensure to have greater lines of communication with the players and make sure that we all understand why we do the things we do in training sessions and match preparations. A simple comment in our end of year review, has challenged us to be better coaches and provide a much clearer line of communication from management to players and from players to management.