If you’re a soccer coach, chances are you religiously keep up with the latest drills and methods to improve the technical and tactical aspects of your team.
You want to know the latest trends in strategy, formations, and styles of play to stay one step ahead of the competition on the pitch. And, even though U.S. Soccer agrees that the psychological component is the 4th pillar of player development, there are very few quality resources for coaches and players.
In an article published last year on how the U.S. Women’s National Team was developing their mental game, the author discussed the important gap between recognizing mental strength training is important and providing the tools need to close this gap:
MOST SOCCER COACHES SAY ‘YES,’ MENTAL TRAINING IS IMPORTANT BUT WHEN ASKED IF THEY ACTUALLY PROVIDE ANY … THE ANSWER IS ALMOST ALWAYS ‘NO.’
But don’t panic. Soccer...
I had an opportunity to speak to the Seton Hall baseball team about their team culture.
I love this topic because culture is like the wind or love. You can’t see it, you can’t hold it, but you can most certainly feel it. It’s there, all the time. And make no mistake, it is either helping your cause or hurting it.
I said culture is both everything and nothing. It’s “everything” because so many ingredients go into it - what players and coaches do, what they say, where and when do they spend time with each other, and how they respond to adversity.
It’s “nothing” because you can’t go down the street and just buy your team some more culture. You can’t just say we’re going to recruit some culture this year.
We talked about the powerful difference between coach-led teams and player-led teams. Coach-led teams can be good...even very good, but ask any coach and they will tell you that player-led teams can be...