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Resources for Training New Coaches

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elilla

New Member
Feb 22, 2008
40
Omaha, NE
I am the owner of a new gym (18 months) and am working on a training program for my new employees. I have created a training program using my past gymnastics knowledge as well as my foundation in teaching you children. However, I would like to purchase a few books for some of my coaches with little or no gymnastics experience. We have hired 2 new coaches that are great with working with preschoolers but don't have the first hand knowledge of the sport (they were not gymnasts). Does anyone have recommendations of resources? I have been looking at Amazon.com and thought about purchasing the "Rookie Coaches Guide" Any feedback? Thanks!
 
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BlairBob

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The books like the Rookie Coach's guide and Level 1-4 PDP are ok. Honestly, more hands on training outside of just shadowing is more useful when training coaches. Shadowing will show them how to use what they have been taught. I've been having this argument with my current owner, but hopefully you understand. You can never coach your rec/kinder and beginning coaches enough because this is where you make or break your gym. I see too many gyms that don't put the time in or put " enough " time in and get marginal results. Sometimes they think they are fine when they really aren't.

Gymnastics Books, Gymnastics Coaching

I like the GymCert manuals and would find it useful to have for beginning coaches to peruse. It's also nice to have a video collection and like most of the stuff from Fun and Fit even if I don't agree with their curricula for rec ( but this mostly stems that it doesn't seem to work in competition gyms as the kids are not in the gym long enough before you put them into some developmental/competitive program ).

I'd print out a lot of the articles from USAG and what not and perhaps keep them in a plastic covered binder.

Drills and Skills is interesting from Bill Sands. Not neccessarily what you'll need for them.

I'll plug my friend the gymnasticsman.com for good training needs for preschool and recreational gymnastics. He comes from a gym that is very orientated towards that niche and that gym has 3 gyms in the Sac area that are all 1k+ ( with dance and other programs ). Huge kinder and rec ( see Trick's Gymnastics in Sacramento ) programs, probably bigger than Byer's and Technique Gymnastics in Sac ( and Technique is a 44k ft gym ).

His " the Big Book of Gymnastics Games " is awesome for skills in kinder or rec. Getting the Rookie Coach's guide and having the Safety Cert manual is a good idea as well. This will show basic planning and where to spot when setting up their circuits ( pretty much how kinder is run ). Matt also has a video that really shows how this works. Rookie coaches can really get into video in a group setting more than just books too. Maybe, it's just this day and age and because we are so visual nowadays.

This is pretty good too:

Gymnastics Stuff Karen has a lot of short manuals on skills as well. Good to have around for those rec levels past age 6.
 

JBS

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Tell them to sign up here.

The Chalk Bucket is a never ending book...new pages every day!:reading:
 

lannamavity

Member
Sep 13, 2007
409
way out West
I learned the most by being sent to another gym to train with other coaches. If you know of a program close enough to drive, but far enough to not be too attractive as an alternative job, send your employees there to observe.

See if you can find someone you respect, and they would probably be flattered and happy to have your employees come in and hang out.

I think I really appreciated my boss's attitude and humility when she sent me out to learn. She just asked that I come back to the gym and apply what I learned and share what I could with the other coaches.

It made me feel more appreciated and it removed the impression that my boss was a "know it all".
 
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BlairBob

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I will say something like lannamavity with the exception you hold it in-house. Invite a local gym coach ( even if they are up to 30 or 40 miles away ) to bring about 3-5 kids of various ages and levels ( 5-13 ) to perform a clinic for your coaches.

Or bring your own or family friend's kids if you are sticking to preschool/low level rec skills to begin with. Doing lot of hand's on clinic at Trick's helped me a lot more early on initially than just reading and watching video tapes.

Or better yet, require them to perform it themselves. They should be able to show basic skills at lower levels to coach. It will allow to understand the skills better.

For instance amongst our rec levels, a coach had to train all the skills and be tested to coach the class level. Not exactly necessary for our levels, but up to a point of intermediate level skills it is. Especially for those young, beginning gymnasts who need to be " wow'd. " They'll also think their coach is that much better being able to do a simple handstand or cartwheel.

Of course making sure that coach isn't a Nazi is very important, especially for Rec and Kinder levels. They need to see someone to aspire to be ( even if they are just working a couple of hours a week and min wage ).
 
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gymnasticcoach

Guest
Books

Check out GYMNASTICS CANADA, they have for sale many many books for sale that would be very helpful to you.
 

flip4u

New Member
Feb 27, 2008
24
I just got back from National Congress and Patti Komara has some new material out. She has been a leader in the preschool and recreational gymnastics industry for years. If you are not familiar with her training materials I would check her out at TumbleBearConnection.com (I think).

I purchased her new Fast Track Training System for Preschool. I comes with 4 1-hour DVD's for each of Tumbling, Bars, Beam, and Tumble Trak/Trampoline. The way the system works is:
1. Give your new staff member the pretest for the appropriate DVD.
2. Have your staff member watch the DVD and take their own notes.
3. Have the staff member return the DVD and their notes. Then give them the posttest.

I have the same issues with finding coaches. I live in a rural area where there has never been a gymnastics facility, thus no former gymnasts etc to draw from. I am hoping that this training system (along with several other of Patti Komara's training DVD's) will cut down on my one-on-one training time. Don't get me wrong; I believe in hands on training and that shadowing/assisting experienced teachers is crucial to developing a new instructor. I am just hoping that these training DVD's will help with some of the basics (terminology, positions, safety, basic skills, etc).

I also send my instructors to State or Regional Congress each year to further their education also. I have a few of the GymCert book too.
 

Ingymmom

Active Member
Jul 12, 2007
981
I just got back from National Congress and Patti Komara has some new material out. She has been a leader in the preschool and recreational gymnastics industry for years. If you are not familiar with her training materials I would check her out at TumbleBearConnection.com (I think).

I purchased her new Fast Track Training System for Preschool. I comes with 4 1-hour DVD's for each of Tumbling, Bars, Beam, and Tumble Trak/Trampoline. The way the system works is:
1. Give your new staff member the pretest for the appropriate DVD.
2. Have your staff member watch the DVD and take their own notes.
3. Have the staff member return the DVD and their notes. Then give them the posttest.

How funny is that? My dd is in that video!!! She has been in a few of Pattis videos & did rec at her school from about 18 months - She is a brilliant woman with a really great program:D
 
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