leadership

Leadership is an inherent part of coaching. In this Masterclass Discussion, PDP Co-founder, Dave Wright is joined by father and son coaches, Keith & David Mayer for an in depth discussion on the topic of authenticity and leadership. Keith and David Mayer have just released their second book, The Lone Wolf: A Story About Assumptions, Authenticity & Action. Some of the key concepts from the book underpin this conversation with Keith, David and Dave diving into the following areas: What is authenticity? The coach as…

In this Masterclass Discussion, PDP Editor, Dave Wright is joined by Academy Manager of Birmingham City FC, Kristjaan Speakman for an in depth and wide ranging conversation. Kristjaan has been at the club for well over a decade and has also coached at Derby County under the guidance of Terry Westley. Now one of England’s most highly regarded Academy Managers, Kristjaan sits down with Dave to discuss leadership, coaching and coach development, shares insights into the journey of Demarai Gray & recent first team debutant,…

In this Masterclass Discussion, PDP Coaching Advisor James Coutts is joined by Bristol City FC U18 Lead Coach, Trevor Challis. In this discussion Trevor shares some invaluable stories from his playing days and in particular the late great Ray Wilkins that has helped shape how Trevor coaches now. This is great discussion around guiding players through their developmental journey and ensuring that honesty is at the forefront of what coaches do. Trevor and James discuss the importance of role models and leadership as a key…

The ‘Cupfinalseminaret’ in Norway provided PDP Editor, Dave Wright with an opportunity to gather the opinions of some leading Scandinavian figures. In this fascinating round table discussion on the women’s game, we talk leadership, psychology and coach/player development with Even Pellerud, Katrine Pedersen and Solveig Gulbrandsen.   In November Player Development Project was fortunate enough to be invited to attend the Norwegian Cup Final Seminar in Oslo. It was a destination for coaches from all around Scandinavia to listen to some of the best in…

Premature professionalism in youth sport is a growing problem. Environments created to replicate professional sport, ‘elite’ pathways at 8-years-old and coaches removing autonomy from the environment by exerting total control. In this article, PDP Editor, Dave Wright challenges the status quo and asks how we can break the machine that coaching is at risk of becoming. The world of sport is constantly evolving and new technology creeps into all sporting codes. Youth players wear tracking devices and GPS, while data can even now be captured…

In this full version of our Live Session with A League club, Melbourne Victory’s U20 squad, UEFA A licensed coach, Dave Wright delivers 3 practices with a defensive focus. Dave will deliver 3 parts to the session designed to keep a defensive theme throughout but allow all elements of the game to emerge in the form of attack, defence and transition. This is an example of taking a theme or topic and tying a range of practices together where the coach can observe outcomes from…

In the final part of our Melbourne Victory U20 sessions, UEFA A licensed coach, Dave Wright puts on a 10 vs. 10 phase of play. The theme of the session is defending deep in a 1-4-4-2 vs. a 1-3-5-2. Due to the number of players, the practice is executed in a 1-4-4-1 vs. a 3-5-2 with the goalkeeper playing as a keeper and centre back for the attacking team. The defensive team are tasked with staying compact and preventing split passes, trying to force play…

In this chapter of John O’Sullivan’s new book, Every Moment Matters, John shares ‘Lesson 2’: You Coach a Person, Not a Sport. This excerpt dives into the youth development overhaul at the Belgian FA, cites the work of Steve Kerr, discusses athlete-centered coaching and gives coaches some practical tools to self-reflect. Lesson 2: You Coach a Person, Not a Sport You have to ask one fundamental question: who is in front of me? —Kris van der Haegen You coach a child, not a sport. —…

Coaching youth sport is complex, challenging and rewarding. In this Masterclass Discussion we speak to Founder of Changing the Game Project and youth coaching expert, John O’Sullivan. PDP Editor, Dave Wright hosts John for an in depth discussion which dives into a range of topics including women’s football, John’s work in the youth coaching space, specialisation, organisational culture and creating learning environments for young people. John is a leader in driving change in youth sport, a long time PDP contributor and has some fantastic ideas…

Communication is a crucial element of effective coaching. In this article, Professor Stephen Rollnick challenges traditional methods of coach communication and offers some practical solutions for coaches to improve player relationships. I went on this 4-year journey through sport to get a feel for how people communicate.  Giving feedback and advice to players sprang out at me from all corners of football. From having a quiet word, to looking at technical data, conducting player reviews, having heated exchanges in the dressing room and beyond, I…

The question this week comes from John via Facebook. I always focus on the process over results, but I am wondering if I should change my approach to help my girls win a final? Your Turn: Ask PDP Anything Do you have a coaching question that we might be able to help with? We would love to hear from you. Here’s what you can do: Join the conversation on our PDP Slack Community. Post them in the comments section, tweet them to us at @playerdp, or ask them…

How do you create a successful sports club? In this article, Ruth Nicholson shares some excellent insights into how sports clubs can create a successful environment and positive culture on and off the field. You have worked hard to build your club – but what are the three simple secrets to making it even better? Learn the three critical elements that make or break an organization’s success on and off the field. The three secrets to a successful club live within the balance and partnership…

In this Masterclass Discussion, PDP Editor Dave Wright is joined by Reed Maltbie for a fascinating and wide ranging conversation on youth development. Reed is a TEDx Speaker, has a Masters in Sports Psychology & Early Childhood Education and is founder of Coaches Realm & Raising Excellence. In this conversation, Reed shares some excellent insights into the challenges of organisational culture and how program leaders can make change, the importance of parent education and how coaches can build stronger relationships with parents. Plus, Reed and…

What is leadership? Mark Upton, Co-creator of myfastestmile and world class coach developer discusses leadership in sport, some of the traditional perspectives of what leadership is and the importance of empathy and collaboration. “They are after strong leadership…someone to come in with a clear plan” A snippet from a recent conversation where we discussed a national sports body looking to fill a senior position in the organisation. It drew me back to a moment in time a couple of years ago where my conversational partner…

As a coach, it’s easy to overlook the sacrifices players and their parents make to pursue their love of sport. With support from Murray United Technical Director, Adam Carty, PDP Contributor, Lara Mossman shares an article on commitment and motivation for young players, providing advice for coaches on how to create autonomy supportive environments. When young players sign up for talented and elite player programs, the commitment is usually considerable. Compared to their counterparts in community sports programs, some players travel several hours each week…

Throughout sports history there have been examples of militant coaches and stories of those who go too far on the sideline. However, the line can be crossed and coaches must recognise the position of influence they have on young athletes lives. Founder of Changing the Game Project, John O’Sullivan shares an article on a terrible recent story of bullying in American Sports which has left lives ruined and raised a huge number of questions in the coaching industry.   On May 29, 2018, University of…

How can sport help build resilience in people? Senior Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Psychology at Staffordshire University, Dr. Martin Turner shares some examples of failure and success in sport from football, golf and tennis outlining the value of learning from these challenges as players and coaches. Sport has been called a natural laboratory for examining the psychology of human behaviour. It is also a perfect place to learn and craft how to respond to life’s adversities. Sport, as in life, provides many highs and many lows for…

Popular searches: defending, finishing, 1v1, playing out from the back, working with parents