As our world becomes more and more technology driven, athletes are able to get instant results on performance. Whether it is GPS, photography, computer movement analysis, various applications for video, stats and computer generated predictions, athletes and coaches have a variety of tools available to assist in overall development of programs and training; overall development of the athlete. AND while I am struggling to keep up with the technology, I wonder if we place too high a role on the gadgets. Is the technology replacing the coaching?
I recently watched the movie 'Trouble with the Curve.' The movie raised the question of technology and using it to scout. In the movie, the numbers reported through the stats did not reveal the fact that the athlete struggled hitting curve balls. It was discovered through the sound of the bat when the athlete hit the curve ball. It was observed when a scout watched the swing the athlete took to hit the ball.
I really considered the technology that I have available to me. I use several applications for taping and observing movement patterns for the sports I coach. These provide instant feed back not only for me, but for the athlete I am coaching. It helps the athlete see his performance.
But if I do not know how the movement is supposed to look, or what I should expect to see, having the technology available is not going to assist me in the coaching process. If I do not know what it should sound like, video cannot assist me either.
As coaches, we need to know our sport(s). We need to use all our senses in the coaching process. And when we do, the technology assists us. Technology should enhance and not replace the coaching process.