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coachchris
May 17th, 2008, 11:24 PM
This year, the USMS Coaches Committee is taking on the task of overhauling and updating the content on the Coaches section of the USMS website. In an effort to better serve our membership, we're asking you, the members, what you'd like to see on the Coaches section of the site. What kinds of things would you like to see on our site that would be of the most value to you as a swimmer or coach?

Any constructive suggestions would be most welcome! While we won't be able to accommodate every request or suggestion, we'd like to make sure that the changes we make have the greatest benefit for our members. In turn, we're hoping that the resources on our site also benefit the coaches who put in the work day in and day out to attract new swimmers and retain existing ones.

If you have any questions or suggestions, please post them here. If you have suggestions or questions you'd prefer not to post, please email them to me at chriscolburn AT usms DOT org. I will do my best to respond, and will follow up with more questions if they come up.

Thanks in advance to all of you for your help!

Chris Colburn
Coaches Committee Vice Chair
USMS On-Deck Coaching Coordinator

coachchris
May 24th, 2008, 06:05 PM
OK, so it's been about a week... and I've received all of one email (and no replies) from this post. Does anyone else have any ideas about what they'd like to see from the Coaches/Coaching section(s) of the website? Let us know how we can make this stuff better for you.

LindsayNB
May 25th, 2008, 01:34 PM
How about some online video resources? There's lots of good stuff on youtube but it isn't organized.

ViveBene
May 25th, 2008, 08:23 PM
George is a fast hand with YouTube references, so I have started my own list from the links he posts!

Maybe other resources, like books? I found Masters Swimming: A Manual, by Blythe Lucero and Cornelia Bleul-Gohlke, to be pretty useless, but Blythe Lucero's 100 Best Swimming Drills I liked, and other swimmers in my training group found it helpful.

I noticed another question today from someone who is training for a 5k, following a post a few days earlier from someone training for a 3k. These long-distance OW "How do I train for it?" questions seem to come up fairly frequently. I was wondering whether a sticky aggregating useful answers already posted might help (that's a mod's function and decision, of course), then got to thinking, there are other generic questions:
1) How do I train for OW long swim?
2) I've been away from the pool for X years and feel as though I'm starting all over. Help!
3) How do I train for [X] distance?
4) What cross-training should I do to be a better swimmer? Links to sites?
5) Difference between pool and OW swimming?
6) How do I return to swimming after injury, while still in rehab or at risk?
7) My personal interest, because I often swim-train alone: Theory and practice of putting together a good workout for different purposes (200 IM v. OW 5k, e.g.)
8) Exercise physiology.
9) Administrative questions, such as how do I save a pool or program, how do I get extended hours, how do I get management to improve the water quality, and so forth, would, I think, benefit from more answers from ppl in the field who have seen different paths and different outcomes.

I thought from your original post the Coaches section would be coaches talking to coaches - fun for coachees to eavesdrop on, but my input would dilute the Gatorade and gnomic utterances!

If improving the Coaches site came up for discussion among USMS ppl, what was felt to be lacking?


:blah: (me)

ViveBene
May 25th, 2008, 10:57 PM
Coaching for coaches:

There was a post from a coach moving up from coaching youngsters to high school swim team coaching, a new world for her. She sought and got advice.

These forums aren't really set up for online seminars, but possibly if you started a discussion of good pedagogical methods for different ages and stages, others would join in.

I'm impressed and delighted by coaches and elite swimmers responding to questions on this bb from relatively new or relatively untrained swimmers. I would not want the coaches to segregate themselves in one part of the forums!

coachchris
May 26th, 2008, 08:44 AM
Truth be told, what I've been asking about is the Coaches section of the website, and not the Coaching forum... but you guys have provided some interesting feedback about each.

One email I received brought up an interesting idea. What if there were a Coaching section (with advice for swimmers on mechanics, training, planning, and the like) and a Coaches section with resources for Coaches? We know there are a number of swimmers out there who swim without a coach who still want some coaching, even from a distance. In other cases, coaches want to get informed on the latest and greatest in Masters coaching. Two separate sections might fit the bill. A directed coaching section would attract more members.... and a Coaches section would give coaches what they need to attract/retain more members as well.

These items could be addressed on the website proper as well as here on the Discussion Forums, and provide a two pronged approach to better serving our membership.

Opinions?

Blackbeard's Peg
May 27th, 2008, 01:47 PM
Hey Coach,
I am sure there may be a few folks coaching just because there is no one else to do it. Perhaps they could use some USMS resources to get ASCA certified... FAQ, where to go about getting it, usefullness in USMS, financial incentives/benefits, etc... (maybe this is already around, i have no idea...)

I really like things such as "Drill of the Week" or "Workout of the Month" and stuff like that. In the magazine, I especially like the "How they Train" section where they profile a USMS swimmer (most of the time not someone entirely spectacular or noteworthy, so not KPN or Rich Abrahams) and they give us a sample workout that they've done that they really like. They're usually doing human sets with human intervals that a lot of the rest of us can do or easily modify.

As a team board member, I would think information about how to attract and retrain more members would be a valuable resource not only for coaches but others as well. Team Management tip of the week!

coachchris
May 27th, 2008, 05:40 PM
Muppet:

Thanks for your response! This is some really good stuff :-)

There are ASCA resources floating around out there, but the Masters curriculum needs to be rewritten (that's somewhere on my to-do list, I think)...

Dennis Tesch
June 3rd, 2008, 07:19 PM
I'm thinking of:

educational resourses... (books, videos, clinics, discussion, etc)

video uploading and downloading of swimming technique

ASCA certification (maybe restart the master certification)

workouts

ask the coach section?

articles from coaches

montlhy or quarterly newsletter

help with club organization

help with swim meet organization

Kevin in MD
June 18th, 2008, 09:13 AM
I'm thinking of:

ASCA certification (maybe restart the master certification)

help with swim meet organization

The masters certification is gone? I'd better throw away that level 3 certification I got last year.

I'd also like to point out that ASCA is not USMS and the USMS coaches committee is not ASCA. Having experience from other federations, that is as it should be in my opinion.

So if members of the usms coaches community wants to work with ASCA to rework the masters certification that is cool. But they are not one in the same.

coachchris
June 18th, 2008, 02:49 PM
The masters certification is gone? I'd better throw away that level 3 certification I got last year.

I'd also like to point out that ASCA is not USMS and the USMS coaches committee is not ASCA. Having experience from other federations, that is as it should be in my opinion.

So if members of the usms coaches community wants to work with ASCA to rework the masters certification that is cool. But they are not one in the same.

Kevin, this is well put. We actually have it on our plate to work with ASCA to re-work the material in the Masters certification... but we are in no way one and the same with ASCA (I'm not even currently an ASCA member).

Brian Stack
June 18th, 2008, 04:49 PM
The masters certification is gone? I'd better throw away that level 3 certification I got last year.

I'd also like to point out that ASCA is not USMS and the USMS coaches committee is not ASCA. Having experience from other federations, that is as it should be in my opinion.

So if members of the usms coaches community wants to work with ASCA to rework the masters certification that is cool. But they are not one in the same.

I don't think ASCA has ever claimed to be one and the same with USMS. If anyone assumed that, they were mis-informed.
I wouldn't toss that Level 3 ASCA cert, that is the only professional certification available to USMS coaches. ASCA has always worked well with the USMS Coaches, but their interest was not always well received or reciprocated.
I did the restructuring of the ASCA Masters Certification materials in '96, as far as I know they haven't been updated since.
When the Masters Aquatic Coaches Association was dissolved in 2001, the USMS Coaches Committee was advocating an in house certification for Masters Coaches, but that effort fell by the wayside as well.
I'm hoping that the USMS Coaching Committee's presence on the web site will lead to a more active and visible coaches committee, one that will take on the challenge of educating and certifying it's member coaches.
BTW, I just renewed my ASCA membership for '08 (celebrating 20 years) and my new card has my certification as Level 3 Masters.