Courtesy of Swim2Win4Life. Featured image: NBAC Coach Bob Bowman and Michael Phelps.
I don’t always know what it is, but sometimes I just don’t want to listen to my coach. Maybe it’s my independency or maybe I’m just hardheaded or maybe I think that I know everything. Whatever it may be, listening to your coach is something that every swimmer needs to learn to do. Athletes that have a coach that they can rely on and have confidence in will become greater swimmers in the long run. Yeah, your coach might be completely new to the sport or even “old school”, but that doesn’t mean that everything he or she tries to tell you won’t apply to your future in the sport at all. Reasons you don’t/ won’t listen to your coach and how to fix them:
It happens with teens and their parents. As you get older, you want others to stop worrying about you, stop telling what you have to do, controlling your every move. Understandable, you want to be on your own, be free. You feel that you don’t need someone to be in charge of your swimming career. Remember though that you are still young. You still have a lot to learn. You might think that you don’t need a coach, but he is only there to help you get better.
You are not subject to change. You like everything exactly the way it is right. You think your technique is flawless, dive is extraordinary, and your flip turns are perfect to the exact angle. It would be nice, but it’s not true even if you think it is. Your coach will give you corrections, and you should consider them. His words shouldn’t go in one ear and out the other. If you don’t understand his corrections, ask him about the reasoning behind it.
The “I know it all” attitude brings this one. You believe that you are too good for your coach. He knows nothing; you know everything. However, your coach does know something, a lot of things even. If he’s a newer coach, give him a chance or chances are your coach has been through the grueling practices, even if it was “back in the days”. He knows what he’s talking about, so just have a little confidence in him and open your ears.