Posts

2017 Reading

Here’s a look at some of the books I have been reading so far in 2017: Read more

Resources to Learn How to Get Better at Getting Better

I am convinced that going forward in sport the biggest gains and the so called marginal gains too will come from how we get better at getting better. How we can improve our teaching, how we make practice and training more meaningful and effective will be the biggest difference makers. I am going to make this a major focus for the rest of my career. In that spirit, I am sharing with you this list of resources. This is by no means exhaustive, it is just the books I have in my library that I have read. I am now in the process of re-reading some of these books and going through them all and reviewing the annotations and underlinings to put together an action plan of principles we can all use as coaches. It’s going to take some time. I am interested in hearing from you about other resources and ideas in this area. We will all get better at getting better by sharing. Read more

GAIN 2017 Theme

Each year for have a theme that serves as a focal point for our presentations and discussions for that year. This year our theme is:

Making Connections to Foster Meaningful Change & Innovation Read more

HMMR Podcast Episode 91: Always Compete

Competition is a key to getting better and Pete Carroll has built his coaching philosophy around that. On this week’s episode we take a look in depth at Carroll’s coaching philosophy, its benefits, and its applicability in different settings. Plus we answer another question of the week. Read more

GAINcast Episode 53: American Football Then and Now

American football has undergone drastic change in the 50 years since Vern strapped on a helmet as a college lineman. New practice guidelines are finally trying to keep up with the changes to help protect players. But will they work? On this episode of the podcast we discuss how the sport is evolved and how practice must evolve with it. Read more

3 Keys to Winning Forever

Pete Carroll is a divisive figure. He stands there on the sidelines with a cheek of chewing gum, dad shoes, and a big smile on his face. Fans find his happy-go-lucky persona either endearing or grating. But no matter what camp you are in, you cannot deny the sustained success he has had at both the collegiate and professional level. As head coach at the University of Southern California he rebuilt a winning tradition, leading the team to two national championships and a record seven straight BCS bowl games. Since 2010 he has been with the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks where they have now won three NFC West Championships in four years, been to two Super Bowls, and won one. Read more

Guru or Coach

This is an old post that I think is particularly timely. The bottom line message is to find a mentor not a guru. Read more

GAINcast Episode 52: Winning Culture (with the Carmel Swim Club)

Suburban Carmel, Indiana might seem like an unlikely spot to find one of the nation’s top swimming clubs, but year in and year out it continues to produce champions. The Carmel Swim Club and Carmel High School have put together a winning culture that has produced a national record 31 straight high school state championships. On a recent visit to the club, Vern sat down with Carmel coaches Chris Plumb and Ian Murray to discuss how they helped grow the culture and what role athletic development plays in their team’s success. Read more

GAINcast Episode 51: The Debrief

Making your training more effective starts with learning from your past experiences, both good and bad. Understanding the value of debriefing and having a process in place is therefore essential. On this episode of the GAINcast, Vern explains some best practices for debriefing based on a career of experience. Read more

This Is What Organization Looks Like

When you are one coach responsible for upwards of 400 athletes, you are forced to be organized whether you like it or not. Thankfully I like organization and take pride in the system I have set up at Notre Dame High School. As we spoke about on our podcast, if you are set up and organized you can get an abundance of work done; you no longer have to choose between the need to do and nice to do, you can do both. Recently Train Heroic visited our new facility in Los Angeles and made a few vides that show our setup. Check it out as it gives you a good idea how we can work efficiently with such a large number of athletes. Read more