The Learning Space

If you believe that your training sessions should be a learning space, then make sure that there is space for them to learn.

When working with young children (6-12) in sport, play should be the key strategy in developing the design of our training sessions. It should be variable enough to encourage a constant need for -”thinking and reflection” and have the substance  to provide the inherent enjoyment and short term gratification that the child seeks. When we do this we are what I refer to as “coaching in context”(in the context of the game and in context with the child’s needs.)  We are approaching play from the perspective of learning. We are creating experiences that engage our young players.

Recently I did a session with a group of 10 year old boys of variable ability. I decided to use the classic one-two (wall pass) as a way of introducing concepts such as identifying, creating and attacking space in tight areas. Also I wanted to set an extra challenge to the players. After a player leaves a space to attack a new space how best can the players organise themselves to maintain balance. Of course I didn’t go in to too much detail with regard to this, actually I didn’t mention anything related to this until after a few minutes when I posed a question to the group.

Throughout out this session the coach and players will also have the opportunity to revisit and put into practice some of the essential points that were worked on here https://footblogball.wordpress.com/2014/08/21/twitter-constraints-on-coaching-coaching-in-context/

The Thinking Man’s Rondo:

rondo vag 1

 

Rondo with a one-two (wall pass). 8 passes is one point. A one-two (wall pass) is 2 points.

Question: How does the rondo best reorganise itself after the one-two is carried out?

Magnus Pettersson a coach at Stockholm club Enskede Ik tried this recently for the first time with his 12/13 year olds. You can watch it here:

 

Game situation 1

rondo vag 2

4v4 with 2 jokers (6v4). 5 passes is a point. A one- two (wall pass) is 2 points.

Question: How does the team in possession best organise itself to maintain balance after the one-two is carried out?

Game Situation 2

rondo vag 3

Normal game: 6v6 (plus joker). A one-two(wall pass) must be completed before a goal is scored. A one-two can be completed with any of your teammates including the joker.

Question: How does the team in possession best organise itself to maintain balance after the one-two has been carried out.

Football is a dynamic sport and for me it demands dynamic learning. Players should be given the chance to experience and understand various concepts and apply their understanding based on the information they have taken in from the environment. This will have technical and pedagogical implications and shift the focus away from the idea of “coach managed learning”  thus providing the space for a more player/learner-centered approach.

If you believe that your training sessions should be a learning space, then make sure that there is space for them to learn.

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