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‘What have the Romans ever done for us?’
This memorable and much-quoted punchline from one of the greatest satirical comedy scenes in film history sprang to mind when Sports Coach UK recently rebranded to become UK Coaching.
In Monty Python’s Life of Brian, Roman-hater Reg, played by John Cleese, ranted: ‘They’ve taken everything we had… and what have they ever given us in return?’
After being reminded matter-of-factly of the revolutionary impact the Roman Empire had in fact had on the whole of civilisation, a reluctant Reg was forced to acknowledge: ‘All right... all right... but apart from better sanitation and medicine and education and irrigation and public health and roads and a freshwater system and baths and public order... what have the Romans ever done for us?’
When UK Coaching announced it was broadening its horizons to reflect the fact that coaching was changing – ‘We are taking our support as an organisation wider than traditional sports because great coaching goes much, much further than that’ – it got me thinking about the immense scale of coaching’s influence and achievements.
And while it is highly doubtful there are any ‘Regs’ out there who remain ignorant to the tremendous impact good coaching has on individuals and society as a whole, how often are these benefits actively spelled out?
Great coaching leaves lasting legacies and these should be voraciously acknowledged.
Of course, the very act of participating in sport and physical activity can have similar wide-ranging benefits, but with a coach by your side to nurture your progress and act as an emotional support blanket through the ups and downs of your sporting journey, it will help maximise those benefits and vastly improve your chances of fulfilling your potential as both a person and a performer.
So, what has coaching ever done for us? Well, with the help of the new Coaching Plan for England, the government Sporting Future strategy, UK Coaching’s new four-year strategy and a host of previous ConnectedCoaches blogs, here are a few observations that emphasise coaching’s value to society.
I think you will agree, the following list is a mightily impressive return by anyone’s standards. Romans included.
Have I left anything out? Please share your thoughts by leaving a comment.
UK Coaching’s vision is to create an active nation inspired through great coaching. You can read more about how it is helping transform lives by providing expert support and guidance to the sector here.
Physical activity doesn't have to end when you hang up your gloves or throw out your boots. Become a coach instead. More information here.
Excellent as ever. Well done Blake.
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