Last weekend (1/2 February) saw the start of the journey for six experienced level 3 triathlon coaches, selected for British Triathlon’s innovative kaizen coach development programme.
Kaizen is a Japanese philosophy that simply means “continuous improvement” and is a 12-month professional development programme for level 3 triathlon coaches.
The first weekend of four, was held at Puma Hotels, Hinckley Island Hotel with the theme around understanding ‘self’. This involved coaches exploring the behaviours of themselves and the athletes they work with, personality types, thinking styles and emotional intelligence in both coaching and leadership - which was both challenging and thought provoking.
British Triathlon designed the programme framework in conjunction with First Ascent (coaching and leadership development consultants) however; the course is tailored to create bespoke learning and development opportunities for the coaches.
Kaizen coaches will be allocated a personal mentor to support and challenge them on their journey with further interventions including a 360-degree coaching profile. Coaches will also receive a video capture intervention, where coaches will be filmed in their own environments and will receive detailed, developmental feedback on their coaching behaviours and skills.
Kaizen candidate, Scott Murray said: "As coaches we encourage athletes to improve their processes, work towards their goals and achieve break-through performances and for me that is what the Kaizen programme offers. Within the first day of the Kaizen programme, I knew this process was going to challenge me but with the great support of the Kaizen development team and my fellow coaches, I can already see how it will make me a better coach. The first weekend was inspiring, thought provoking and emotional; I don't envisage it being an easy journey but I know that it will be worthwhile."
Paul Moss, Kaizen programme manager added: “It was a fantastic start to the programme, with a great learning environment provided by Steve Bentley from First Ascent that enabled coaches to really engage with Kaizen. These coaches are serious about learning and becoming better coaches and people. Their passion and contributions over the weekend really impressed me which confirmed that we have the right coaches on this programme. I’m really excited about the next 12 months, and am really looking forward to supporting these coaches in their ongoing development and meeting their needs and expectations of Kaizen.”
The next weekend will see coaches come back together on the 5 and 6 April at Loughborough University, exploring topics such as coaching expertise, effective communication in coaching, and a session from Dr Steve Peter’s highly acclaimed Chimp management company; the model behind the successes of British Cycling, Sky Pro Cycling Team, and many other Olympians.
Kaizen is the highest programme British Triathlon offers in the coaching pathway. The philosophy of this innovative coach development programme is based on the following principles:
Empower coaches to take responsibility of their own learning, their athletes and any one they manage in order to attain a successful performance driven track record.
Flexible and tailored learning, bespoke to the needs of every coach.
Objectives & philosophy broadly set by British Triathlon, programme shaped by the coaches supported by the coach development team.
Expose coaches to a range of experts and experiences from across a range of fields (from inside and outside of sport – who are renowned for their knowledge, experience and expertise).
British Triathlon will capture information through the “coaching lens” in order to disseminate learning and knowledge to a wider audience, through a highly effective monitoring and evaluation system.
Contribute to elevating coaching within society, raising the profile of triathlon coaching and coaches.
Kaizen Coaches: Brian Butler, Paula Dewar, Rob Moore, Scott Murray, Ann Myatt, Gavin Prior and Morgan Williams.