Performance = Potential – Interference

11219605_772726436174593_5704022954026677535_nLast fall I took John O’Sullivan’s Coaching Mastery course. I loved all the great content, expert interviews, and the community interaction. Going into a big tournament this weekend this equation from the first module comes to mind:

 “Performance = Potential – Interference” 

The most common forms of interference on game day are the stress and pressure of winning, the stress and pressure of the big moment, the stress that follows a mistake, and the distractions of getting caught up in a bad call.

Many times the things we do to “help” our players can actually hurt their performance in that we put too much pressure on them for a particular game or situation.

I’m also reminded of a book called Bounce by Matthew Syed where the author talks about Olympic athletes pre-competition routines. Athletes at the highest level and on the biggest stage go through these elaborate pre-performance routines to convince themselves that what is to follow is “just another game.” Yet we do the complete opposite with our young athletes in what is a relatively meaningless game.

I say all that to say this. Go out there, let the kids play and do not get so caught up in the moment that you take away from there experience. Encourage them and do not beat them up over mistakes. Mistakes will be made. Calls will be missed. We know that it’s going to happen so when it does lets keep cool and remember you are feeding them interference that will subtract from their performance. Also, we must never lose sight of the fact that the kids are here to have fun They are kids first and athletes second. They cannot stop being kids, but they can and will stop being athletes if we don’t let them be kids.

Registration for John O’Sullivan’s 2015 Coaching Mastery course closes on June 23. Click here to register.

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2 Comments

  1. sherry lehr

    reading your blogs,when pressure is put on kids or adults we feel the pressure, sometimes it seems like people are waiting for you to fail. and what happens is you fail.

    Reply
  2. Pingback: One Misunderstood Quality of a Great Youth Sports Coach - MarshallLehr.com

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