Wednesday, May 17, 2017

The four stages of the physical preparation coaches career

In my fourth decade of professional involvement in the sport and fitness industry I have reached many conclusions. I acknowledge they are generalisations, however these hypothetical models help all of us understand human behaviour.
Based on both my own personal experience and my experience seeking to help, educate and guide others professionally, I have formed the following model.
Stage 1:  Blinkered and gullible
Years: 0-10 years into their career
The first phase I see occurring is when a newcomer to the entrant is simply in awe of the opportunity they have been given, which is nice to see. However this often comes with tunnel vision on what is needed for long-term success, and this phase is characterized by an exclusive and what I believe is an unbalanced prioritization of professional development. Sets and reps. How may grams of glutamine per quantity of liquid and what temperature should the liquid be. The longer it goes on the less productive it becomes.  However they are blinded to this and the typical mentor they choose is not helping them develop a more balanced approach.
In this phase the young or new coach is so easily impressed with the shiniest, loudest objects that they are not really ready to be students of what I call a balanced life and true success.  They are more likely to do what ‘everyone’ is doing than make wise choices as to what’s best for them.
Stage 2: At the crossroads
Years: 5-15 years into their careers
This is the period during which the newcomer is no longer a new comer, and has been involved long enough for the shine to come off their experience, and some home truths to settle in.  At this stage the physical preparation coach is at a critical point or crossroad in their career. They are aware of certain frustrations and limitations and now they are deciding – will they do anything about it?  This is a critical point in the career.
There is some discussion in the human potential industry that if significant changes are made here for the better prior to the age of 28 year, there is much hope for their future.
State 3: Embracing or denying change
Years: 10-20 years into their career
In this phase and path, coaches have chosen not to embrace change, and retreat to what is easiest – doing nothing. They accept that the way is has been is the way it has to be and close off all options to change. This is the path taken by the majority, whose desire to confirm is greater than their courage to create change. You can see human potential shrinking as the years pass.
In this phase and path, coaches have embraced change and are challenged by developing the new values and skills required to succeed in the direction they have chose to solve their frustration and fulfill their potential. This is the minority.
State 4: Living with or without the fruits
Years: 20-40 years into their career
For those that chose to deny the possibility of change, of learning new skills, of fulfilling the potential, the final stage of their working life is one of silent desperation. A life of ‘if only’ but often unspoken. This is the lot that most face or will face. That is human nature.
For those with the courage to make the changes, they spend this life phase enjoying the fruits of their willingness to take risks, to learn new skills, to change.
To complete the cycle of life you could say there is a fifth stage –
Stage 5: Retiring in comfort or destitute
Years: Last 10-30 years of life
Those greater majority who choose the safe, unchanging, what everyone else is doing path will live in a standard of poverty never expected or seen in modern history, due to the demographic changes and lack of social security funds available to support the aging population. It will not be pretty.
The minority who chose change and had the determination and courage to break the stereotype will live with a level of comfort not enjoyed by their less courageous peers.
Conclusion
There are a few points I want to stress here. Firstly the above categories are arbitrary and intended to provide a message.  Secondly I don’t believe you need to accept any stereotype. You determine your own path. Thirdly, it is never too late. I like the saying ‘It’s better late than never’. So don’t feel you have missed out, or ‘missed the boat’, so to speak. There is always opportunity.
Having said that, if you are not driven to change, then get comfortable where you are.  Its not about what you have, its about what you are willing to do to improve and change your circumstances.
The KSI Coaching program is aimed to give coaches a life where they have choice. Choice with where they live, why they work, where they work, who they work with.  It is a path that has been available for nearly twenty years. During this time we have been able to reach a number of conclusions, as we continually refine the path.
Firstly this is a path that typically takes a decade to master.   You may have heard the saying:
“It takes 10,000 hrs of practice to achieve mastery in a field”
--as popularized by Malcolm Gladwell.
Sounds daunting. Where does it begin? By taking action
"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step"
-- Chapter 64 of the Tao Te Ching ascribed to Laozi.
Footnote:
In June 2017 we are offering a special 21-day KSI Orientation program for those who are seriously considering starting that journey.  There are some pre-requisites. We ask that you send us an email at question@kingsports.net describing :
1.     How/where you fit into the four stages of the physical preparation coaches career;
2.     Why you believe there must be a better way.
3.     Why you believe KSI may be that better way
4.     What exposure to our teachings you have had to date (you will need to have made a step of studying our material other than what’s on the internet)
This is a free program however you will be expected to meet the above criteria and you will be expected to work and keep up with the 21 day program.  There will be one webinar weekly and other mid-week tasks competed in your own time. During this program you will get to look under the (motorcar) hood (to use an American car analogy) and we will get to look at you and determine how committed to change and suitable you are for the KSI Coaching Program.

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