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Posted in: General

What do you do when your athlete/team blames you? Has this ever happened to you? What did you do?

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  • robertkmaaye

    Yesterday Jess Varnish and Katy Marchant ‘raged’ at their coaches after failing to qualify for Olympic team sprint’

    Here are some of their quotes

    “We're in this position through decisions of other people, not through any fault of our own.”

    "There's been no real plan.”

    "I've been around for a long time and you think, 'Should I keep putting my life in these people's hands?”

    "How many more times can I keep putting my life on hold, making these choices for my career, if it's not going to pay off, through no fault of our own?”

    Clearly emotions were running very high straight after the event. It must be so dissapointing to miss out on your main objective qualifying for the Olympics no less... especially when you’ve sacrificed so much! (they can still do it individually)

    Reading about the ‘outburst’ I was just wondering...

    Has anyone been in that situation before when your athlete or team has blamed you for their performance and not meeting their goal?

    How did it make you feel?

    How did you react?

    How would you advise others from your experiences if they were ever to have to deal with a similar situation in their time coaching?

    I appreciate your approach may differ depending on the level you coach at/age group you coach but would be interesting to hear everyones experiences.

  • williammte

    Failure to perform has always been the fault of coaches. Success is due to the natural talent of the individual.

  • Deborah

    Always?!!

  • Wow ... I think if I were their coaches I would be seriously considering my position after that public outbreak. 

    I've not been in this position as a coach but have seen it happen around me ... heads are turned with the "grass is greener" mentality and sometimes it really affects the coach especially if it is a child with potential .

    My question to this is: when during coaching do you progress from "teaching" into merely "directing and maintaining" .... and, if they as athletes had been around a "long time" why was there no change instigated on their behalf when they could see things weren't working rather than waiting for an unsavoury outcome to publically blast people?!

  • robertkmaaye
    On 08/03/16 12:18 PM, Dannielle Starkie said:

    Wow ... I think if I were their coaches I would be seriously considering my position after that public outbreak. 

    Shocked me reading it Dannielle! I thought British Cycling head coach Iain Dyer dealt with it quite well considering he must have been suprised to say the least at the time! Technical director Shane Sutton has said the relationship has been damaged so will be interesting to see what happens moving forward

  • marion

    This is an interesting subject and touches on the 5 points of coaching...??

    Id say keeping the athlete in the decision process, making sure plans, objectives, goals are transparent-everyone has to own up to his or her faults. As an athlete I always felt that during training I had to push harder, that if I didn't feel pain at some point something wasn't going right and the best thing my coach ever did for me was send me back to the hotel the day before worlds....I needed someone to tell me to back off.

    On the opposite end having to constantly push athletes per their power to weight ration, get out and train, do more, is not an easy task and if the results aren't there at the outcome atleast theyve been informed....Keeping the balance is key and not always easy....every little bit helps-at the end of the day each party knows who the winners and losers are

  • Ralph

    Yes always.

    Even if the head coach is completely blameless, someone has to carry the can, the buck has to stop somewhere. Head coach means by definition; your head is always on the block. A successful coach is not one that manages to get his head off the block but manages not to have it chopped off. In M.I.T. you’re not taken seriously unless you’ve had 3 failed start ups, most successful coaches, have been sacked and come back stronger. Leicester’s FC manager for example. Just like our athletes, we expect them to come back from defeat.

  • sophia

    At the heart of coaching lies the coach-athlete relationship. The reason for defining coaching through the coach-athlete relationship is that neither the coach nor the athlete can do it alone. They need one another in the pursuit of skill development, competence and satisfaction; thsu they are equally reponsible  for their successes and failures. Blaming one another reflects a poor quality coach-athlete relationship - one that lacks respect, trust, commitment, co-operation.

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