keeping connected to practice

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Over my coaching career, I have had the pleasure of being a fitness coach, county coach and academy director, and always gained a real sense of value working with likeminded athlete’s when developing their skills. However, due to family and working commitments, I took a natural break in coaching, until recently that is. An opportunity presented itself at the end of one of my son’s football matches, and one that I did not want to shy away from. The grassroots Gloucester community Under 10s football team were losing week on week and becoming vey despondent and frustrated with their lack of progression. Given that I watched every training session (with an expert eye of course!) and was a spectator in the pouring rain and gales for every match, it felt like a natural move to help. Little did I know that I would become a fundamental part of the coaching team and have implemented and deliver training plans that go back to the basics. Coaching at grassroots level has been a shift in my previous working practices, but one that I thoroughly enjoy. Slowly, we have started to see progress, success and enjoyment, all traits that will undoubtedly help them when they move into more competitive and demanding 9v9 matches next playing season. My coaching at grassroots level and interest in young people’s involvement in physical activity has already seeped into module discussions and practical’s, to reinforce my passion of linking theory to practice.

Dr Claire Mills

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