Dublin Coaching & Skills Clinic

Brummie, Coaching, Colonel, IFDA, UKU Coaching Courses

Sion “Brummie” Scone tells us about how the ESC in Dublin went down.

Recently, Daniel “Colonel” Furnell and I headed to Dublin to work with the next generation of Irish players and coaches. Following my interview with Mark Earley on Ultimate Interviews, I was approached by David Rickard, President of the Irish Flying Disc Association (IFDA), in March with the idea of running a version of the Elite Skills Clinic in Ireland at some point. 

Brummie coaching the GB World Games team in Cali. Photo courtesy of Isabela Vivas.



However, nothing is quite so simple as just repeating a previous session; instead, Rickard wanted us to focus on working with the elite level players and also to work on developing a small group of coaches, with the ultimate aim of a self-sustaining coaching community. Coach the coaches, and be sure to include some innovative tactics. No small ask considering neither of us had ever done anything like this! 

Fortunately, Colonel and I are both UKU Coach Educators and so have experience delivering the Level 1 coaching course, and I was heavily involved in developing the Level 2 coaching course. We weren’t really aiming to repeat either of these, but instead to take a few key points, and instead focus on content beyond the level of either of the UKU courses. As such, those present for the Dublin weekend had a preview of what the Level 3 content might one day look like just two weeks before the first Level 2 course it taught! Between teaching our own skills masterclass, introducing some new concepts to our coaches and letting them loose, then performing tactical reviews of performance on the fly. We crammed in a huge amount in two days; fortunately, all of our coaches showed never-ending patience, and they were also lucky enough to have 25 very keen players who seemed to have boundless enthusiasm. Finally, we’d had the sense to use an indoor 3G venue on the weekend that a huge storm passed overhead! All in all, it proved to be very fun and hopefully extremely useful, and it has certainly helped to ignite some discussion about the future of the UKU coaching courses. 

[ED] Here is what some of the people who went thought about it:

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I personally really enjoyed the weekend. It was a fantastic experience not only learning from the two GB lads but getting to train and go through drills with different players than the ones I usually do. The atmosphere was relaxed but it was clear everyone was there to learn and take as much as they can from the clinic.

If this was to ever happen again I’d be the first to sign up. It’s great to have a new set of eyes look at players in Irish Ultimate and get us all to learn new techniques and tactics. I feel I’ve learnt more in two days than 4-5 months of training sessions, and I’m glad that myself and other players can go back to their respective clubs and colleges with what they’ve taken in.
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Yes the weekend was fantastic. It should definitely be run again if possible and there should be a lot more hype about it. I don’t know anyone that didn’t enjoy it or learn something really useful from it. Keith was almost not going to go and was incredibly glad he did. So I think more of a description about the calibre of the coaches and quoting people’s positive feedback from this weekend next time might help stress how great an opportunity it is…
… people who were properly invested in the weekend were really receptive and enthusiastic about it all. I think they worked really hard and showed Brummie and Colonel a lot of respect.
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I thought the skills clinic was excellent, really benefited from it. I definitely think you should do it again. … The GB lads ran really good drills, explained them well and when they had the coaches running things I thought they did a great job too. … I can only see Irish Ultimate benefitting from this in the future…
Thanks for organising it all.

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I was quite happy with the clinic. Gave me some ideas and alternate views on certain aspects.
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Yea, it was good craic, the lads were very qualified and provided a refreshing approach to a few new drills.
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I was very happy with it. I would highly recommend that it is repeated. The content and the coaches were great!!
All in all I was delighted with the weekend.
Thanks for organizing it.
Brummie and Colonel taking silver at WUGC 2012 in Sakai. Photo courtesy of Dan Furnell.
Interested in more info? Drop Brummie a line, particularly if you’d like a skills clinic catering to your precise requirements run for your team or a small group of coaches.
DP @ tSG

One thought on “Dublin Coaching & Skills Clinic

  1. Though I couldn't make it to this skills clinic, the reports from it are so positive I'll certainly be signing up to attend the next available ones over in the UK. There was a huge amount of work put in by David Rickard and by Brummie and Colonel to make sure this clinic happened and everyone I spoke to about it said they benefited a lot from the weekend.

    On the suggestion that more hype should be built around it, rather than lack of promotion for this event, I think it's fair to point out that a key reason more people didn't sign up for this event was related to timing. Directly after a particularly busy season has finished in October, there were plenty of players and coaches that probably hadn't the time, money or energy to spend another weekend on ultimate at this stage! Hopefully it will happen again soon and more will be able to make it to the next one.

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