On Monday evening, NSFA held its first Diamond League and Super League coach education workshop of the season, bringing together over 40 coaches to discuss the vision behind the competitions and how we can collectively work together to grow the standards of players, coaches and teams.
Super League, in its inaugural season, accounts for the division one in age groups Mixed Under 12 – 16, whereas Diamond League continues across four age groups division one competition; GU10, GU12, GU14 and GU16.
Ed Ferguson, NSFA Community Football Manager explained the ‘why’ behind the creation of the two development leagues within NSFA;
“The creation of Super League in 2018 and the continuation of Diamond League aims to raise the level of grassroots football and close the gap between the representative level of football. During the season our efforts are primarily directed at coach education and the implementation of minimum training requirements to expose players within these age groups to an elevated football experience.”
All Super League and Diamond League teams at the beginning of the season committed to the following requirements set out by NSFA:
- Two training sessions a week
- Minimum coach accreditation of Skill Training or Game Training certificate (or higher), to be completed by 31st May, 2018.
- Coaches must be a member of the NSFA Coach Support program – ‘INSPIRE’
- Coaches must attend the DL/SL coach education workshop
“We believe the requirements we have placed on the teams and coaches involved will increase the football experience of the players involved in these teams. I am a strong believer that the coach creates the culture within their team and by supporting our coaches through courses, workshops, match day support and INSPIRE we can produce better development and engagement outcomes”
A strong focus of Monday evenings workshop was on ‘Creating a culture of Development’, with coaches discussing what this means to them and establishing a personal ‘outcome’ as a coach they aim to achieve for the season.
“It was great to see coaches discussing, sharing and providing experiences on how they measure their success as a coach. It was pleasing to see coaches involved for the right reasons, with many stating their desire to improve each player individually, as well as forming collective goals for the team that were not necessarily centred around the ‘result’ on match day”
The development of Diamond League since its inception in 2014 has successfully created a ‘culture of development’ that NSFA wishes to stretch across the Super League age groups. The night progressed with coaches split by birth months into smaller groups to discuss how they believe, they should act and be perceived in certain situations:
- Match day
- General Behaviour
A constant theme throughout the workshop was the concept of ‘organisation’ to realise the vision of Super League and Diamond League. Organisation meant a lot of things in each different scenario;
- Organisation in terms of environment – Good fields, change rooms, referees, correct equipment
- Organisation on match days – Players on time, coaches prepared, white boards used, standards
- Organisation at training – correct equipment, session focus/plan
- Organisation for season – individual player goals, team goals, creating a team culture
“The evening showed the dedication and passion our Diamond League and Super League coaches have for football, coaching and improving our football environment in NSFA. This is a huge step that I am excited to see grow over the season and more importantly, I am intrigued to see how our coaches create an environment that is unique in community football across NSW and Australia”.
Diamond League and Super League coaches are supported during the season in their club by their Club Coach Coordinator (more information here) as well as through NSFA’s XLR8 Head Coach Nick Marr. Each Saturday and Sunday morning Nick will be in the community, providing support and mentoring to coaches as well as providing feedback on the style of football played and the overall progress on creating our culture of development for teams.
Northern Suburbs Football Association would like to thank all coaches that attended on Monday evening and look forward to sharing highlights throughout the season with the wider NSFA community.