A new group with different goals. Chatting and waiting for their session to begin, I listen to them a little and I learn about their day, their injuries, how they’re feeling.
I’ve done this before I know my stuff. But this is different, it’s a new group and I’m new to many of them. Watching over me (with note book in hand) is their coach and helping out are their assistants. I am new and I have to prove myself. I am the only woman coach. I am also younger and I also have less experience. But I will be confident and this session will be great!nI will be listening and learning.
Lets warm up – off you go, you know the route, no they didn’t really no the route, an explanation from me of where and how takes place. Just an easy warm up run and the session has begun. I listen to the group and assess what has happened, I make a mental note and a lesson is learned.
Back they all come and I pass over to those supporting the session tonight, for a further warm up. I am more qualified than those supporting but they seem more experienced, I do not really know this, but that’s what I tell myself. I should not be telling myself this; I should be reminding myself of why I am here. I am here to coach. I continue listening to the group as they stretch and warm up, I learn a little more and my session is taking shape.
The session runs well and I divide the group in to groups based on their abilities. I listen to the runners after each rep and I learn from them. They complete their tasks and achieve their session goals. I resist that temptation that I always have when there is someone else there, to pass over to them because they know more or I believe they do. But I do listen and they listen too and together we learn.
I listen to the coaches and learn from them, I take onboard what they have to say and adapt my session because of their input. We are a team a coaching team. I may be leading, but I’m not in this on my own. It’s about a coaching team, who coach a team of runners. In turn each of us develops individually. We listen to each other, our athletes listen to us (most of the time) and we each in turn, learn.
If you do not listen how can you learn? Listening is a skill, you need to tune in to what is being said and take it on board. How many times have you appeared to be listening and then realise later you didn’t take anything in.
When you’re coaching my advice is always
LISTEN and LEARN
Bio: Claire has been a runner for 10 years having evolved from beginner to competitor and then to coach. On her journey she has collected information, experience and qualifications that she now carries with her to develop the running that they want to do. Working with groups and individuals, Claire looks at all the parts of the puzzle to create a full picture of running. She is looking forward to sharing her experiences , thoughts and aspirations within the blogs.