I don’t remember who said it, but I once heard the early part of a new volleyball coach’s development called “the drill collecting stage”. I thought it extremely apropos. It hits the mark very neatly. I’m guessing it’s not something confined to volleyball coaches either.
Basically, this is the phase of a new coach’s development where they are learning different ways to teach skills. They are answering for themselves “How can I train … ?” Or perhaps “What’s the best way to teach …. ?” It is a necessary period of learning for any coach. It creates the foundation for developing priority driven training plans. Also, being able to dynamically adapt practices as required.
The eagerness and enthusiasm of this stage in coaching development can get a bit carried away, though. It can result in what I referred to earlier as Fancy New Drill Syndrome. It can also take a coach down the path of just compiling a collection of drills, games, and coaching methods which they don’t necessarily understand as fully as they should.
As members of the volleyball coaching community, and the broader volleyball community in general, we really don’t want to dampen the enthusiasm of new coaches. We need all of them we can get and more! This stage, though, is where mentorship can be highly valuable in helping with guidance.
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