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Jason Fletcher on I.D.E.A.S coaching strategy

For many new squash coaches, planning a coaching session can sometimes be a daunting task. To help with the planning of coaching sessions, Jason Fletcher, Coach Development Leader at Squash New Zealand, shares his insights on the I.D.E.A.S framework for lesson sequence.

“Beginning your coaching journey can be difficult with a lot of different factors that you have to contend with. Many new coaches ask how do we deliver a session?

“First step is planning!

“When planning your coaching session, keep it simple – coaches usually don’t have the time or energy to make complicated plans for every session. Five minutes spent planning the night before could save you 20 minutes on the day.

• Decide on a focus or goal for each session, to which all the activities are related.

• Select one or two simple activities and develop your own variations.

• Remember to allow for the different rates at which individuals will learn.

“Keep the session active and enjoyable. The more chances players have to practice the more opportunity they will have to learn and improve. Research shows that the more time a learner spends practicing, the quicker they improve!

“Use the mnemonic I.D.E.A.S as a check for lesson sequence.

  • Introduction: Always introduce the theme/focus for the session.
  • Demonstrate: Coach and demonstrate the activity. Always site your pupils so that they can see all demonstrations.
  • Explain: The coaching/teaching points of the skill.
  • Activity: This is very important – don’t have pupils sitting or listening for long periods. They need lots of time practicing the new skill.
  • Summary: Always summarise sessions aims, give practical targets and reminders of coaching points, reflect on the session i.e. What went well? /What could be improved? /What to consider for next time?

If you’re a WSF-accredited squash coach, join the official WSF coaching group for more top tips, course information and more.

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