It is all very well to be YOUR OWN BEST COACH and to KNOW YOUR GAME INSIDE OUT; however if this is not being compared with world’s best, then there is little chance that the athlete will make it to the top, and/or remain there.
So the knowledge that athletes need will be based upon –
- outcomes and results of world’s best teams or individuals within those teams; or against individual performances in non-team sports, and,
- demonstrated skills of individuals in competition
Why is it important to have these benchmarks?
These become the reference points upon which programming, goal setting, new techniques, and so on will be based.
And where is this knowledge to be found?
- By looking at current athletes demonstrating the skills of world’s best
- Through experience – time is a great teacher
- Research and experimentation will often help find new knowledge or better ways
- Surrounding the athlete or team with the right people such as coaches, peers, mentors, and so on who will constantly provide sources of information or present challenges to existing knowledge
- Looking into history and being able to take from the past what can be used in the present to enable performance of the future
- And finally, big data is an incredible source of knowledge providing insights, trends, patterns that were never imagined in decades past, and now can be so readily accessed
At the end of the day, no matter how much knowledge there is available to the athlete, it is still his or her ability to be able to apply that knowledge to every moment that the sporting challenge presents which will determine an athlete’s ability to rise to the top, and of course, how long they can remain there!