Thursday, March 24, 2011

Songs of Desperation, I Played Them For You

Here is a burrito kitten.

I had a good swim this morning. The Guy gave me some more pointers and I feel like I'm getting better and better at it every day. Today while I was swimming and trying to implement some of The Guy's suggestions, I started thinking about people being coachable and what that means. When I was a kid, one of my aunts used to try to coach my brother and I on the breathing part of swimming by making us bob up and down in the water until we couldn't take it anymore. Just so you know, not the best way to encourage an interest in swimming. If anything, it made me ever weirder about getting water up my nose.

I was coached for running from the time I was 10...Probably not very well either. When I was having a bad race, my high school coach used to stand on the side of the track, smoking a cigarette and yell, "You stink, Churlita. You stink!" I did have one decent coach in high school - my sprint coach and I can still hear her in my head yelling, "Lift your knees, ladies!" when I am starting to fade at the end of a road race. Pretty good overall advice for anyone who wants to run faster or keep running - lift your knees.

So, as far as me being coachable....I think it depends on the coach and what and how they're telling me to do a thing. I can be obstinate, and certainly my first instinct is to resist whatever advice I'm given. (Why I do that? I have no idea...) But after I have time to let it sink in, I finally try to use the parts I find useful. So, I guess it's a bit conditional...I'm eventually coachable - if I find the coaching helpful and it isn't just someone trying to motivate me by tearing me down. (which never works for me, by the way)

The Guy has been a very helpful coach for me. He doesn't bombard me with info or demand that I do what he says. He just suggests a few things and once he thinks I've mastered them, then he tries a few other things. Today we worked on my stroke and trying not to raise my head so much when I take a breath. This time, I actually tried The Guy's advice right away. Weird. Maybe I'm more coachable than I thought.


Pamela said...

Or maybe he's a great coach. And you're a great listener.

laura b. said...

I think you have to trust your coach to be coachable and you and The Guy are developing that kind of relationship. What do you coach him on?

Mnmom said...

Has yelling "you stink!" at any kid ever worked? Ever?

MrManuel said...

Yes, some people are definitely more coachable than others. Sure, a good coach helps, but the stubborness of the athlete and willingness to listen is so important.

booda baby said...

I'm STILL undecided if it's a good or not so good thing, but I've been highly coachable since ... forever. I think there are real downsides to it - always soldiering on without considering whether I even want to be DOING the thing, being the biggest.

Being just a little coachable sounds pretty good from my perspective. :\

rel said...

I think everyone is coachable. Coaching is harder than being an athelete; you have to be genuinely interested in someone besides yourself.

Tara said...

I had such a fear of water for the longest time, but then finally learned to swim when I was in high school and during the Summer. I still hate getting water up my nose, though.

One of my swimming coaches was creepy. Plus, if we were having problems learning a lesson and said, "I can't!" He'd say, "When you say you can't, it really means that you won't." Skip the psychology lesson, Coach Creepy.