IDEAS BEHIND A SUCCESSFUL COACHING SESSION
- Before you begin, have the training session planned out. If possible, place your cones/props out beforehand; this will give the session proper structure rather than making it up as you go along
- Gather the players in and explain what you will be working on today
- Skill Development (as above, use drills but not for the sake of it)
- Tactical Development (Stop and talk to players; discuss positional skills; what to do with the ball when in possession etc)
- Live game (interrupt to “coach” where needed)
- Special Situations/Tactics (discuss certain match situations eg what a half back does if an opposing midfielder comes through the middle with the ball etc)
- Wrap up and review
A TYPICAL COACHING SESSION
- Group Organisation (5 mins max – Talk)
- Warm-up (5 mins). Simple movement with a ball (with young children)
- Play a Modified Game (10 mins), in 2/3 groups if needed.
- Introduce/Revise a skill (5 mins) As above.
- Practice the technique (10 mins). Drills, increase tempo, Observe, coach. Stop and correct. Don’t criticise!
- Progress the skill (10 mins). Fun game, Game Play Drill or Modified Game
- Play a game (15 mins). Eg Backs & Forwards, possession etc. with emphasis on the skills learned today.
- Warm down – speak to the players about what they did and practice at home. Talk about the next event
HURLING TRAINING FOR YOUNGSTERS
During the hurling sessions there were a few things that we as coaches were on the lookout for and a few things that kept cropping up. These are listed below.·
The Grip – The way players hold the hurley. This is the most common mistake that young players make and it is the most important aspect of hurling to get right so that players can reach their full potential. Players will often have their dominant hand on top when they throw up the ball to strike but they then switch their non dominant hand to the top when they strike the ball. Players then get confused and start catching the ball with different hands and try picking the ball with their hands in a different place every time. Some players will get away with striking the ball this way on their strong side from a standing position but will then struggle to strike the ball on the run or on their weaker side. A few points that you may find of use are listed below –
o Ask players which is the hand they write with (this will be their strong hand)
o This hand is to be at the top of the hurley at all times
o This is the hand that does all the work and is used for all of the control.
- Ready Position
o Players to be aware that all movements come from the ready position
o Players should be in this position when they don’t have the ball.
- The Swing
- o Watch for players swings
o Players should be making a C with their hurley when they swing.
- The way the toe of the hurley is turned
o The toe of the hurley is always to be turned out away from the body when picking the ball, soloing etc
- Striking Left and Right
o Get players to perform skills using both sides as they will only develop one side if we let them.
COMMON TO BOTH HURLING AND FOOTBALL
- Head, Hands, Feet, Hurley (Hurley added when coaching hurling)
o When coaching we need to break down technique using Head, Hands, Feet & Hurley
o We need to coach using head, hands, feet & hurley
§ Coach players as to what they should be doing with their head, hands, feet & hurley when performing each skill
§ By breaking it down this way it makes it easier to get the point across to the players especially younger players
§ When coaching we should not give players to much information at one time
§ 2 to 3 points at one time is enough (Head, Hands, Feet, Hurley)
§ Our demonstrations should be kept short (less than 1 min) as players lose interest and concentration – We should do most of our correcting of technique during drills and games
o We need to watch what a player is doing with their head, hands, feet & hurley when they are performing a skill
o This way we can correct which part, head, hands, feet or hurley, is not being performed correctly
FOOTBALL TRAINING FOR YOUNGSTERS
- Hand/Fist Passing
o Watch for players throwing up the ball when they hand/fist pass the ball
- Kicking the Ball
o Watch for players not following through when kicking
o Get players to keep their head down when kicking
o Watch for players throwing the ball up when they kick the ball
o Watch players throwing up the ball with 2 hands when kicking the ball
o Watch players dropping the ball with the opposite hand to the opposite leg (dropping with right hand to left leg)
§ The ball should be held in two hands, to one hand and dropped onto the foot with the same hand to the same leg (Kicking with the right foot ball should be dropped with the right hand)
- Doing Skills Left and Right
o Get players to perform skills using both sides as they will only develop one side if we let them
o Get players to hand/fist pass, kick, turn etc using left and rightIt is very important that we watch out for technique when players are performing all skills. It is our responsibility as coaches to correct poor technique in a positive way and we have to keep doing this until the player improves. All skills and aspects of hurling and football are important but for younger players we really need to watch out for the points listed above as these are the fundamentals of hurling and football.