When the Skip Hits the Fan

By Mike Warkentin

In Coaching, Columns

March 09, 2016

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Try changing your perspective to connect with athletes who are struggling with a movement.

“Do something different. Take off one shoe. Try chewing gum. Maybe lose your underwear for the next set. Or put on a second pair. Just do something different. Anything.”

Coaching can be exasperating at times, and tough situations sometimes push trainers to their wit’s end and beyond.

For every athlete who learns the false grip and starts crushing sets of muscle-ups 30 seconds later, there are 50 who require dozens of cues, hundreds of attempts and months of struggling before they finally earn a view from atop the rings. Other athletes fight with movements for years, some utterly baffled even long after they’ve acquired far more than the requisite strength.

When an athlete shows little or no improvement for a lengthy period, coaches are forced to play the long game, never knowing which sledgehammer strike will split the stone. Good coaches swing relentlessly from different angles, using everything from the most precise verbal, visual and tactile cues to abstract, “Star Wars”-style advice in the vein of “try so hard, you should not.” But even the very best of us can reach a point where we silently decide a particularly challenging client will never accomplish his or her goal.

At that point, I think you need to hit the reset button.

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1 Comment on “When the Skip Hits the Fan”

1

wrote …

Lo que dice Mike es muy cierto. El sentir la frustraciĆ³n nos hace poner los pies sobre la tierra y entender que todos trabajamos por obtener una mejora y nuestro guia es nuestro coach. Agradezco este consejo y les comento q los clientes dificiles son como un snatch de 200 lb... parecen imposibles pero todos sabemos que con paciencia constancia y trabajo muy duro se pueden lograr.

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