It’s a crazy time for the world of football right now. With all major competitions being put on hold, people everywhere are missing out on watching their favorite teamsin the big leagues.
But even worse, the effects are being felt in grassroots football as many teams from across the world aren’t able to practice together and continue with their regular developmental activities.
It’s easy to become passive and not practice or improve. However, true champions face challenges like these as opportunities to get ahead, no matter how uncertain the circumstances may be.
In this article, we’re going to look at fives ways you can nurture the development of your players from home so that even in the event you can’t meet with your players face to face, they still have the chance to develop and reach their goals.
‘In times of adversity and change, we really discover who we are and what we are made of’. -Howards Shultz
1. Create Engaging Home Workouts & Training
First and foremost, players need to have access to quality training sessions that they can do individually in areas such as their back yard or living room, without the help of others. Having a plan in place showing players exactly what they need to do is the first step to continuing the development process remotely.
‘A goal without a plan is just a wish’. -Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
One of the strengths of the 360Player platform is that it gives coaches the ability to easily create individualized development plans (IDPs) for their players. Here’s how it works; first a coach inputs some basic information like a player’s position and physical maturity, then they do a quick assessment of the player’s skills. From here the app has all the information it needs, and the algorithms will recommend specific exercises to players based on their own strengths and improvement areas!
Coaches also have the ability to create their own exercises and sessions with our training planner tool. Here it’s easy to create or curate the exact exercises you want and save them to your own personalized library. It’s also easy to add your training sessions to events and invite players so that they can do the exercises on their own while working at a distance!
We’ve curated some of our own favorite ‘working from home’ training exercises in the platform that can be used at any time but the real magic of the training planner tool comes when you personalize your library just the way you like it for your team.
2. Improve Tactical Understanding
While quality training activities and workouts can ensure that players stay at the peak of their game technically and physically, spending time at home can also be a great opportunity for players to improve their tactical understanding. Using video analytics can be a great way of getting players engaged in tactical discussions and gain new insights.
One of the unique features of the 360Player video analytics tool is that it allows not only coaches, but players as well to create clips and highlights from video footage. Having this capability has allowed users to use the tool is some fun and creative ways. In one such example, a coach added professional matches into the platform and then gave homework assignments for the players to watch and tag certain events in the match. In the events the players tagged, they could reflect on the match being played and leave comments that the coach could go through and read. The assignment ultimately provided an opportunity for valuable tactical discussions to take place and the coach could share their insights and knowledge with players to improve their understanding.
Here you can see players have gone through and made comments on relevant tactical events in a professional match between FC Bayern and RB Leipzig.
3. Stay Engaged & Increase Accountability
When unable to meet with players in real life, accountability is very important. Great coaches have the ability to engage their players and when this can’t take place face to face, we can use virtual tools to fill the gap. Features like messaging groups, interactive calendars, and a team wall make it easy to stay connected with everyone in the team, no matter the circumstances.
Within the calendar coaches can invite players to training sessions who can then mark whether or not they have completed the assigned exercises. In addition, some teams within the platform have had players video record portions of their workout and post it to the team wall. The serves multiple purposes. Firstly, it keeps players accountable and inspires their teammates around them when they see their peers working hard. Secondly, it allows the coach to go in and comment to leave positive or corrective feedback very easily.
Having a team wall filled with engaging updates from players and coaches creates a good feeling within the team. Just because everyone is apart doesn’t mean you can’t stay connected!
4. Reflect & Review Goals
Having some down time can be a great opportunity to either set or reflect on one’s goals for both personal and team development. Writing goals down is always a good idea so that it’s easy to go back and refer to later. When setting a goal, try to be as specific as possible. You can even check out this article for tips on goal setting.
‘People with goals succeed because they know where they are going’. -Earl Nightingale
A great place to jot down goals or notes on progress is within the 360Player performance review tool. Here coaches can set a template for players to respond to and reflect on how they are doing. In addition, all responses from both players and coaches are saved to player’s profiles so that it can be easily referred back to at any time.
The fifth and final point is a culmination of the four previous points combined, and that is to use the tools available to keep your team inspired and working hard. Having a community of players that push each other and motivate each other is extremely valuable, especially when going through a difficult time. As a coach you can stay in contact with your players easily and ensure everyone gets the attention they need. One idea to give your players that little extra push could be to post a daily inspirational quote or video on the wall. This not only serves as a great daily check in, it also helps players get in the routine of consuming content that will help them reach their goals.
Above all else, figure out what works for you and your team. Remember that you’re all in this together, don’t be afraid to get creative, and use this as an opportunity to get ahead of the competition, one day at a time.
If you want to learn more about what the 360Player platform can do, you can check out an overview here.