Floorball – Guided discovery

Magnifying glass.
Most of us has once owned a magnifying glass, have you? I have. The original purpose of a magnifying glass is to visualize the details or make the details bigger. Did you use the magnifying glass for something else? I did…
I assume that you have at least once tried to create a fire with your magnifying glass, when you were young? How can this be connected to (direction) your vision, goals and focused areas?
Your vision goals and focused areas should do the exact same work as the magnifying glass, catch the energy within the frames and focus it to a point to create fire.

Youth Floorball shooting, goal scoring practices and drills

Are we looking at the same picture?

One of the most important things, when talking about vision, goals and focused areas is communication. How can you secure that everyone has the same target image or picture as you want or how do you know the player have understood your message or seen the picture you try to “paint” out for them?

There will be a lot of things that will make the picture to differ between your floorball players, experience, expectations, their own will, the language you are using including your body language and many other things. Therefore it’s important that you somehow get a receipt of their understanding and interpretations. If you also allow you players to comment or maybe add things to your vision, focus or goals, you will immediately get a stronger buy in from each and one of the players.

A message from the future

Why should you have a vision? The vision will give you guidance in your leadership, coaching, daily decision making, acting and communication.

When you talk about a vision, you and I might have different pictures in our heads. I will try to give you my picture. For me to start with a vision can be in whatever format, only your own fantasy can limit it. It can be everything between some bullet points on a paper to a short movie “from the future”. So the format is not that important, but how it’s perceived, it should create energy and direct it on the long term, and to be honest how exciting are some bullet points, even if they would do the work?

A vision can be a colorful multi-dimensional description of what you as the leader see in the future, you can in your own mind/head try to move couple of years into the future and describe what you see, feel, hear, regarding the team, achievements, team spirit, players, club, fans, results, behavior etc. A good way to describe what has happened in the future is to actually try to describe it as it would have happened, not in, should terms. Because as you have read earlier the pictures you create are important (sour lemon or basketball example). There is one more dimension to ad, our brains can not make difference between created realistic pictures and realistic pictures, the difference comes from our own values and belief…

I try to visualize the difference for you.

Vision 2014
– We should win the league 2014
– We should improve our team-spirit
– We should increase the intensity in our practices
– We must… etc.

Or…

8th of May 2014
I would like to welcome you all to this press conference. I can imagine you have a lot of questions after our victory in the League. If I just start to give you my point of view of the key success factors, after that you will be able to ask some questions to the players.

To start with, I think our victory would have not been possible without the fantastic team spirit we have in our team, everyone has a clear defined role, and all of the players have accepted this during this year/these years, we don’t use the word “first teamers”, we are one TEAM.

During this year we have increased the intensity in our practices which we also showed clearly in yesterday’s last game in the league. We were the strongest team in the end, we were willing to run the extra mile, and if you look at the amount of goals we have scored this season, it’s 89 goals and that gives you also the picture of an offensive, strong and quick team!

The setup, could be that you actually rig a press conference with the players in the press role. Do you feel the difference between these examples?

Guided discovery and all in

After creating a vision it’s important to also involve your floorball players, what do they think? Is this the correct way? Don’t just accept an yes, ask questions, why do they think it’s the right way, or why not, what did they find exciting in the vision (and not, why?), was there something that needs to be changed, added or deleted? In the end you are of course the one deciding about changes, but if you don’t listen to your players, you need to explain why you will do that, why you will continue with your “picture”, but in that case are you walking alone towards the vision or do you have your team with you on the trip? I can say that if the vision is well taught throug, prepared and tested on a smaller group before the presentation, and it’s attractive, you will only get positive feedback and explanations why it’s correct and therefore the players also feel that the vision is also theirs. Otherwise you sometimes get good input that will complement the vision, things that you haven’t thought about or didn’t feel were important, but for the team it was. Even if you make some changes, you will still have the same buy in from your team, in this case maybe even more, because they have added something and you as the leader have showed them that their opinion counts, respect!

José Mourinho

The same method applied on practices and drills.
“I use a global method, I use direct methods when preparing our organization, but I also use guided discovery where I create the practice, dictate the aim, and the players come up with different solutions” /José Mourinho

Floorball 2 vs 0, 2 vs 1 and 2 vs 2 practices

Salibandy peliharjoitukset pelitilanneharjoitukset 2 - 0, 3 - 0

Floorball game drills 2 – 0 (left)

Floorball practice to the left is started up with P1 moving forward with the ball, turning into the centre. P2 runs towards the goal and receives a diagonal pass from P1. P2 shoots the ball into the goal and P1 goes for a possible rebound.

Option 1 to the 2-0 floorball practice

P2 continues his/her running to the other side/post, and creates space for P1 to move in to the other border, P1 takes a shot or passes the ball to P2, who then will put the ball in goal.

Option 2 make the floorball practice 2-1

Add a defensive player to the floorball drill who will join the situation from the right corner or start from the middle.

Option 3 make the floorball practice 2-2

Add two defensive players to the floorball practice, these will join the situation from the right corner and from the middle.

Option 4, develop 2 vs 2 floorball practice situation

Perform the floorball practice like in the basic set up. After the shot P1 and P2 will defend against two forwards coming from the right corner. Play 2-2 until the ball is dead, the ball is in goal, the goalie has it or the defensemen has passed the ball to P1 or P2 que.

Floorball Positive Attitude

The head coach of a floorball team has one main job. He/She has to get the most out of the floorball team during the season. Everyone wants to win the floorball championship or the league title, but the reality of the situation is that only one floorball team will make it, and if  that is the only goal you as the floorball coach and your team have, to grade your performance only by whether or not you have won it all, there are going to be a lot of unhappy floorball coaches and players at the end of the year.

Floorball practices for 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 year olds

So ask yourself. Can you make your team better than it was at the beginning of the season? Can you put up a set of different goals, measuring development in different areas, where the league title of course can be one of the goals? Can you turn your floorball players and team into a cohesive unit? Can you teach your floorball players something about the game and teamwork and improve their outlook on life at the same time? Maybe the first thing you should work on is promoting a positive attitude within your team.

Floorball – Run the extra mile on practice

If you assume that the floorball teams on certain level practice the same amount of practices each week, lets say four times, and you want to outcompete your opponents, you can choose to increase the amount of floorball practices or work on improving the quality of your floorball practices and drills, in order to “run away” from the other teams.
Let’s have an theoretical example, 4 (floorball practices) x 31 (weeks, length of the season) = 124 floorball practices during a season. Each practice contains 5 floorball drills, 5 X 124= 620 drills. Each floorball drill is repeated 5 times per player during the floorball practice, 5 X 620=3100 repetitions.

Floorball 1 vs 1 practices drills

Instead of increasing the amount of floorball practices you could set up a goal that each player will run 3 meters extra every floorball drill, this would mean 3100 drills X 3 meters X 20 players = 186000 meters. Your team would with this small improvement run 186 kilometers extra during the floorball season, the result should be visible in the end of the games or at the end of the season, you would have physically and psychologically strong floorball players, they will take the extra steps needed for success. Instead of running, you could let your floorball players practice a feint while waiting. 10000 repetitions will automatize the move, 10000 hours will make you master of it!

Floorball youth practices drills and training

The power of small steps

You can of course use the same principle for improvements in general or your work towards common goals. Let’s say you can do 3 small improvement steps each day, after a month you have 90 small improvement steps and after 6 months 540. If you can make each floorball player in your team to take these small improvement steps you will have 540 X 20 players = 10800 small improvements in your floorball team.

Floorball 3–0, 3–1, 3–2, 2–3 Drills and Practices

Salibandy peliharjoitukset 3-0, 3-1 ja 3-2

Floorball drill 3-0 (to the right)

Floorball practice to the right starts with P1 running with the ball, P1 passes the ball to P2 who passes it on to player 3. P3 shoots.

Option 1 to the Floorball practice 3-0 (to the right)

P1 passes the ball to player 3 who takes the shot.

Option 2 to the Floorball practice 3-0 (to the right)

P1 passes the ball to player 3 who takes the shot. P2 receives a pass from “P1 que”, P1 and P3 in front of the goalie, P2 takes a shot from the distance.

Floorball practice 3-1 (to the right) option 3

Add a defensive player from the corner or from the middle to create a 3-1 floorball drill.

Floorball practice 3-2 (to the right) option 4

Add a defensive player from the corner and one that follows P3 to create a 3-2 floorball practice.

Floorball practice 2-3 (to the right) option 5

Perform the floorball practice drill as in the basic format, when the first 3-0 situation is finished. The attacking players will play defense against two forwards that will come from the corners.

Floorball Communication Guidelines

One good communication guideline I can give you, is that, always remember who or what you are speaking to, or about, and pay attention to the situation that you are in. You cannot use the same logic and vocabulary with a group of eight year old floorball players that you would with a team of professional floorball players. You might be able to yell at older players during floorball drills, but you can’t do the same thing to a ten year old floorball player or with a referee during a game.

Floorball game and passing drill practices

Above all, always, remember that the world does not circle around you, each floorball game and practice is just a practice, until you start to earn your living on it, then the stakes might be higher.
Every floorball player, parent, spectator, and game official has their own beliefs and sets of priorities. Very few of these people will bend to your desires just because you are a floorball coach. Be prepared to explain what you want and why, this will help you on you floorball coach journey.

Floorball – Stress level affects focus and attention

Too high or low levels of stress/arousal will affect many areas, one of them is focusing. When you are talking about focusing, you can talk about optimal, broad or narrow focus.

Hockey vs Floorball

Let’s have a look at an example from the UEFA Champions League match between Inter and Bayern Munich.

Level of focus, Attention, arousal, stress, optimal, narrow, broad

1. Optimal attention field , with moderate or optimal arousal. (Lucio is able to see the opportunities for passes, but can also try to get past his opponent)

2. Too broad attention field, as a result of low arousal. (He can hear the crowd and his coach Leonardo, and has the focus on something else than the closest situation), can result in loss of ball possession.

3. Too narrow attention field, due to very high arousal. Limited to one option and it will be hard to perform it well due to too narrow focus (opponents feet) and tension in muscles.

What about the focus or attention in this picture (Bayern Munich defenseman and Inter’s Samuel Eto’o)?
Where focus Samuel Eto'o Inter Bayern Munich Champions League

Floorball game drills and situations 3-0, 2-1, 2-2, 3-1 and 3-2

Salibandy peliharjoite pelitilanteet 3-0, 4-0, 3-1,3-2,4-2

3-0 Floorball practice to the right

Player 1 starts the floorball practice by running with ball towards the defensemen, the defensemen moves to the border and receives a pass from P1. P1 heads for the area in front of the goal, meanwhile D1 passes the ball to P2 , P2 immediately passes the ball to P1, who will shoot the ball into goal.

Make the floorball drill to the right a 2-1 practice

The floorball practice drill is performed as in the basic set up, but you can add a defensive player from the other corner. D1 will not be part of the floorball drill after the pass, therefore the situation will be 2 vs 1 in front of the goal.

Make the floorball practice to the right a 2-2 drill

The floorball practice drill is performed as in the basic set up, but you will add a defensive player from the opposite corner and one defensive player following P1. D1 will not be part of the floorball drill after the pass, therefore the situation will be 2 vs 2 in front of the goal.

Make the floorball practice to the right a 3-1 drill

The floorball practice drill is performed as in the basic set up, but you will add a defensive player from the opposite corner. D1 is part of the floorball drill after the pass, therefore the situation will be 3 vs 1.

Make the floorball practice drill to the right a 3-2 situation

The floorball practice drill is performed as in the basic set up, but you will add a defensive player from the opposite corner and one defensive player following P1. D1 is part of the floorball drill after the pass, therefore the situation will be 3 vs 2.

Floorball Communication and Body Language guidelines

Communication starts immediately in the first meeting with your team, players, new people, other floorball coaches, referees etc. the first impressions counts! Dress well, hold your head up high, look into their eyes when you are speaking, and always speak slowly and clearly. Treat everyone with the respect that you hope to earn or get back. (body language)

Floorball practices and drills for 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 years old

Listen when others speak and consider what they have to say before you respond. So you respond on the right thing. Ask questions as “receiver”, to secure that you have understood the message from the “sender”.
Make sure that you understand their point of view before continuing the conversation.  When you disagree, do so respectfully, clearly state your case and avoid repeating the same points over and over.

Floorball – Norms create team culture

If you look up the word, norm in Wikipedia, you will find the following explanation. Social norms are the behaviors within a society or group or, the rules that a group uses for appropriate and inappropriate values, beliefs, attitudes and behaviors. So the norms will affect both the direction within the team and the co-operation within the team.

Three categories of norms

You can divide norms in different categories, here are some examples.
– Describing norms – steers the behavior in the floorball team.
– Valuing norms – helps the team prioritize among wanted behaviors.
– Discrete norms – not visible when they are followed, but if someone breaks against a norm, it will be visible.
– Internalizing norms – These will be adapted by the floorball team members and new comers, and often live for a long time, therefore norms are also stable.
In order to develop, visualize and strengthen wanted norms, you can use teambuilding activities and feedback as your tools.
Norms are usually connected to behavior during practice, game, before/after regular season and social situations. One of the common norms in all of the teams will be the expectation of how hard you are expected to work during a practice or game.

Floorball thanks for the game

Norms within a group of monkeys

Here is an experimental example with monkeys and how they create, and handle norms within the group.
– There is a group of monkeys living in a big cage, the monkeys get bananas that are hanged up in the tree that’s located in their living area, after the bananas are hang up in the tree, one of the monkeys head up for the bananas, monkeys do that it’s natural : ), but when he does that all the monkeys are flushed down with water, they get really wet and that’s something monkeys don’t like. After a while a new monkey’s heads up for the bananas, with the same result, wet monkeys. After repeating this several times, the monkeys understand the message, they continue with theirs, without trying to get the bananas in the tree. A new monkey is placed in the cage and he immediately heads after the bananas, but before reaching there, he is stopped and beaten up by the other monkeys, because they know the consequences! Step by step all the “original” monkeys are changed to new team members. For every new monkey the same procedure is repeated, he heads after the bananas and get stopped and beaten up. Even if all the monkeys are changed to new “team members” they are still stuck to the norm, don’t touch the bananas in the tree, without knowing why, it’s just the way it is, and has always been. Do you recognize this in real life situations?

Norms tend to live for a long time

We are many times following rules, norms and guidelines because we think they make sense, but logic can sometimes be “old fashioned” and not relevant anymore, but the norms can create a culture within the team or club, positive or negative.
How does it look like in your floorball team or club? Is it clear why you do, or not do things or why people act in certain ways?
What kind of old norms does Jose Mourinho find in his new team, Real Madrid and what has he left behind in Inter for Rafael Benitez and now Leonardo?

Outspoken rules

If norms are more invisible, rules are more outspoken and visible. Rules can like the norms be divided into some categories, here are some examples.

– How or frame rules – framing in what’s okay and what’s not, in general.
– Priority rules – when you need to choose or make own decisions, you know the team priorities
– Time rules – eliminating co-operational losses

Mourinho’s rules in Real Madrid

When José Mourinho started his voyage with Real Madrid, you could read about some of his rules in the news papers.
– Don’t come late, I will not wait for anyone.
– Training begins 9:30. Those who come late are locked out from the rest of the team and get to practice alone.
– The bus leaves always on time. If a player is late, his left at home, even if it’s a minute’s delay.

“I’m not waiting for someone, even if it would mean, that we get to play the match with a man less” /José Mourinho

Injured players should arrive at the training ground an hour before training starts. After examination, the physician should then report to Mourinho about the situation.
The practice is always 90 minutes long. And the Real Madrid players should be prepared for a tough season. Hard workouts, but with a lot of ball involved.
And finally, mobile phones may be used also on the bus. But the signal must be on silent, so the rest of the squad is not disturbed by incoming calls.

Feedback to Benzema about following the teams rules

Spanish Marca writes that Mourinho repeatedly held talks with Benzema about discipline and the team rules. Last time Mourinho needed to upbraid him in front of the rest of the squad.
“If it was just for you, I would have the practice in the middle of the day, because you come here at ten, half asleep and at eleven, you have already fallen asleep again” / Mourinho

Did you know that a space shuttle uses more energy the first three minutes after a start, than during its entire voyage round the world? So make sure you have the right amount of energy and the right direction, when you start of, because you are fighting the forces of gravity like old behaviors, norms, thinking and habits. (See the category A. About Mourinho Leadership “The Model”, how each piece in the leadership model is connected to each other)