DON'T FORGET THE PRACTICAL

At the end of January I taught a USAW Sports Performance Course and the following weekend I attended the NSCA Southwest Region Conference in Long Beach, CA.  Both events provided me with an updated perspective on the state of young, aspiring Strength and Conditioning coaches.  My impression is that Strength and Conditioning is now an area of interest as a vocation, and it is attracting a number of young persons who have little idea of how to get started.  Furthermore, upon talking to some of the newly interested I found that many of them have sufficient academic education, but not even the least bit of formal training on the proper use of weights in the pursuit of strength development. 

Part of the problem is that academic institutions can be slow to stay abreast of the latest and best practices in any field.  It is not surprising to find that most universities have PhD’s on their sport science teaching staffs, but that not many of them have qualified instructors in their practical activities courses.  This seems to be a major stumbling block for prospective strength and conditioning coaches.  As the field moves forward, the educational requirements have become more rigorous as far as the academics are concerned, but little attention has been paid to the practitioner aspects. 

As the snatch and clean & jerk are gaining more acceptance as training lifts, more and more physical trainers both within and without the Crossfit community have begun to offer coaching in these lifts, but there is little in the way of formal, practical instruction to develop the coaching skills.  The traditional weekend course provides some direction, but there is nothing better than supervised coaching practice to learn the best methods of teaching the lifts. 

We at Takano Athletics are pleased to have offered a coaching internship for those interested in further developing their coaching skill for the snatch and clean & jerk.  Since the inception of the program in July of 2014, we have had 24 interns pass through the internship and greatly improve their knowledge of the lifts and coaching skills in a manner unapproachable by any other means. 

The best way to learn to coach is to begin coaching beginners under the supervision of an experienced coach.  This is what we offer in a setting that includes both experienced coaches and experienced athletes.  This environment is the most productive one for a young coach as not only is there coaching practice, but the opportunity to evaluate and observe more experienced lifters practicing their craft. 

This learning experience is invaluable and currently is not available at any other venue in the country.  If you’d like the chance to greatly enhance your coaching skills under the regular supervision of an experienced elite level coach, this is your best opportunity.  Application materials and procedures are available at http://takanoweightlifting.com/coaching.