• Allows coaches to self reflect and gain insight on how they coach
  • Gives coach educators the chance to highlight best practices or areas of improvement
  • Shows the balance between play and instruction within a session
  • Is a great visual tool for gauging coach effectiveness

Self Reflection

One of the best things a coach can do is self reflect on how a session went and make some notes on what worked well and what didn't. This is useful to note for your own coaching technique but also for tweaking and improving sessions. Using video analysis allows for a more in depth reflection on the session as you can watch it back and gain some insight that you possibly won't have picked up on in the moment. Some things to consider are:

  • Coaching behaviours (verbal/non verbal)
  • Ability to identify moments of reinforcement or correction
  • Reflect on interventions
  • How effective were your coaching points/interventions and your session as a whole
Evaluate your session's. Evaluate yourself. Then improve on both.

Evaluate your session's. Evaluate yourself. Then improve on both.


Visual Feedback

It's one thing to be assessed on a session and receive feedback via the written word. It's entirely different to sit down and have a discussion about the session with the use of video. The visuals can be very clear, undeniable in some cases. Furthermore, it backs up the verbal feedback and shows exactly what you're talking about.

If a coach does a great job of connecting with the players or is extremely effective in a coaching point, this can be highlighted and given as feedback as reinforcement to keep doing what they're doing. Equally, if there are areas of improvement you'd like to see moving forwards, this can also be highlighted. It's one thing to say to a coach, " I'd like to see you do your demo with speed as players will mimic your speed of play". It's another thing entirely to highlight a slow demo and watch as the players attempt the technique at the same speed. That visual can give clarity and reinforce the importance of the demo.

Video Analysis (in this case vLoop) allows coaches to receive visual as well as written and verbal feedback.

Video Analysis (in this case vLoop) allows coaches to receive visual as well as written and verbal feedback.


Balance Between Play and Instruction

To take the above point a step further, utilising video can also show the amount of time spent during a coaching point or stoppage. I think this is an area where most coaches can improve. We only have a limited amount of time to affect a players game. Therefore it's extremely important to make it fun, challenging and give them an opportunity to learn. If there's a poor balance between play and instruction, a coach is unlikely to succeed in creating this environment.

I often hear the thirty second rule for stoppages and I think that is nonsense. I think the idea is right though; keep things brief. Instead of the thirty second rule, aim for being concise. Watch your coaching point back and ask yourself; "Could I have said that in less words?" "Did I repeat myself?" "Did I mix up my instructions with coaching feedback in one stoppage?" Just by being more concise, you'll give players more clarity on what it is you want from them.

Teach this in 30 seconds... Go!

Teach this in 30 seconds... Go!


Gauging Coach Effectiveness

While this can be a little more subjective than some of the topics highlighted so far, I still think that coach effectiveness can be highlighted using video analysis. Some scenarios are more obvious than others. Let's take the earlier example of demonstrating with speed. It might be apparent straight afterwards that the tempo rises and the players try the given technique or activity at the speed the coach showed them - that's effective, you can see it happen.

On the other hand, a freeze stoppage in a game might talk about the cue for the overlap and when it might come out in a game. But for the rest of practice the scenario doesn't occur again. On watching it back, perhaps you can see a player on the other team identifying an opportunity for the overlap and making that run - indirectly you may have influenced that recognition and decision.

Closing Thoughts

If you're coaching a technical topic, have you talked about the entry, execution and exit of the move.

No matter the topic, we need players to become independent thinkers and decision makers. Give them the information they need by touching on the Who, What, Where, When, Why and What If.

The environment matters. It varies based on so many factors but a coach can heavily influence the training environment and culture of a group or team. This is easily identified when watching sessions back.