If Skaters feel powerless they won’t be in control of their goal setting and it will be harder for them to act with intention. I like to go around the group at the beginning of each practice to ask the skaters what they’d like to work on; I think this can help them have awareness of why they are there. If someone is there to just get out of their house that is fine by me but it can help people focus if they have a goal for the day.
Teams need to have the guidelines in place and a unified goal to experience the group efficacy of champions. If a coach can’t follow this philosophy it will be nearly impossible for the skaters to rise up. Derby practice should be about basics, basics and more basics.
OK, growth isn’t easy; it can hurt and I think this: TEAMS SHOULD NOT COMPETE UNTIL THEY ARE FULLY COHESIVE AND HAVE A WINNING WARRIOR MIND AS ONE UNIT.
I also believe that until skating skills are mastered, most common derby drills will either be dangerous or innefective at best.
If coaches are direct about their expectations it will pave the way for skaters to have accountability and accept feedback that is direct. If the overall environment lends itself to skaters stepping out of their comfort zone to try new things the energy will be driven by “aha” moments, sharing and empowerment. If this is achieved, then it could also diminish or eliminate cliques.
If there is a discrepancy between:
1).the criteria identified by the coach and 2). who is actually “chosen” to be on the roster it will:
diminish the skater’s accountability for their own actions.
If skills are cut and dry about what is required for competition they’ll be better prepared to do what is necessary for the team and have a mind set to be ready to focus on their performance.
The goal is to prepare skaters to achieve the mind set of training and focusing. If you provide the information that is key in choosing an all star team, then everyone is prepared for not being chosen and may better understand the connection between performance, self motivation and what it takes to be an all star.