View Full Version : Am I A Coach?

November 7th, 2008, 05:19 PM
Question: Am I A Coach?

This may be a dumb question, but it is something that has been in the back of my mind for quite some time.

Primarily, I swim and train myself. I get up at 4:45am and I am in the water from 6:00am to 7:00am M-F and from 7:00am-9:00am on Saturday. Sometimes, friends will join me for sets and we trade calling sets.

Some of my self coaching activities:
I write my own workouts
Keep a training log
Keep a performance log
Read all I can about the sport and have a modest library
Purchased and studied Reese and Marsh's instructional DVDs
And I've read extensively about anatomy, exercise physiology and kinesiology (biology undergrad; engineering Ph.D).
I've purchased a Flip Video Camera with the underwater housing so I can video tape my stroke below the water (with the help of a friend).
And I have library of video recordings of race competitions.

I use the information to plan my swim season and to correct certain stroke and race faults. I believe that you have to concentrate on controling gross motor movements so that you can correct flaws during practice. I have a list of cards that remind me of the things that I need to fix based on watch my video taped performances. Before these gross motor movements can become automatic, they have to be burned into the proprioceptive memory (muscle memory).

I plan to conduct a simple velocity analysis on some of my video recordings of my race to find areas for improvement.

I love competing and have had some success at the national and world masters level - which why swimming has become my adult avocation.

So, can I call myself a coach?

BTW, I spent several summers coaching and served as a volunteer assistant coach for my college - back in the ancient days of mens college swimming.

November 7th, 2008, 08:50 PM
Question: Am I A Coach?
No, you’re a swimmer who trains alone and writes stuff down.

There is an old saying; A lawyer who defends himself has a fool for a client. The same may hold true for self coaching, :bolt:I suggest you find a real coach.

November 8th, 2008, 05:35 PM
Since Philipp has earned All American honors several times and is a USMS National record holder, he's probably doing just fine coaching himself.:applaud:

Redbird Alum
November 10th, 2008, 03:33 PM
The appropriate Webster's definition says "a person who trains or instructs an athlete".

Since you are an athlete, and you are training and instructing yourself, then yes, you are a coach.

Must be especially hard on you when you refuse to listen to yourself, or when you attribute your unwillingness to push the next set as you being hard or mean to yourself.

I can't imagine the conversations and debates....

January 26th, 2009, 06:12 AM
Im well aware that this is an old post. But I think it is an interesting subject.

I believe Phillips approach to his swimming is great. Not all coaches put as much effort into their swimmers as he puts into his planning.
There are many ways of doing swimming and Phillip seem to have found one that is good for him.

Especially for masters swimmers its important to find a way of training that suit the individual. For some that will mean training in a team, for others its training alone and some will maybe do a mix of team training and practices on their own.

I even brought an athlete to Beijing last summer who was training 40-50% of the time herself.

I believe the key to succes for swimmers is in tracking what you do like Phillip explain and to stay mentally ready for both competition and practice.

By keeping track of what you do at practice training also become much more fun. You will start to see to full purpose of your training and will know why you go to the pool every time you get there.
It will keep most swimmers motivated.

On the mental side I believe all masters swimmers should make sure they REALLY enjoy everything they do with their swimming. Staying happy keep you motivated and when you go to competitions to have fun its most likely you will swim fast!

Have fun