What is it?
Concentration coaching focuses on the player’s ability to attend to the right things at the right time, and in the right place (on and off the ball) while blocking out the distractions that can harm performance.
What can I do?
The coach who looks to develop concentration will assist their players in focusing on the correct cues for a specific action, match situation or event – potentially related to their positional responsibility.
From the Field:
“I froze the drill and asked them to tell me what they were thinking, doing or about to do at that precise moment. Where was their attention? Were they talking to a teammate, ball watching, running into space etc?” Under 12 Academy Coach
They will be interested in knowing what their players were thinking and focusing on at any given moment during the game or practice in order to raise awareness of their attention. From this understanding they can guide the players towards the correct cues within that situation. They would seek to test and develop their players’ concentration by increasing the length of time they had to focus (or renew effort to focus) and challenge them to keep their concentration under increasing fatigue. Practices may incorporate the use of distractions in order to improve their players’ ability to “block out” these unnecessary cues and focus on the task at hand.
Here’s one players’ views on concentration and its importance to his performance.