Thursday, September 17, 2009


The concept of flow is often preached by coach educators representing both the coaching realm of thought as well as sports psychology thought. Flow is a concept described simply as a time period when challenge meets, or slightly exceeds, athlete skill level. During flow, an athlete's skill set appropriately matches the challenge in front of them. If the challenge does not reach an athlete's skill set, they will be bored, but if the challenge is too hard, anxiety may set in. In either case, flow is lacking and the practice or game will be interrupted.

Why Flow?:
Coaches want to achieve flow within a practice so there is continued learning and skill development. Flow is also important to keep practice on schedule, keep everyone involved, and mimic game situations.

Sport psychologists study flow and want to recreate these flow experiences for atheltes because often times these flow states are when athletes are benefitting most from enjoyment of the game and likely to perform at their best. Therefore, if flow experiences can be created, more athletes will benefit more often from their experiences within sport.

Thinking about flow and trying to achieve maximum flow within practices is a serious consideration for all sport coaches. Design practice around what flows the best way, this will hopefully eliminate time setting things up and maximize your practice.

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