4 More Ways to Improve Your Informal Learning | Cricket coaching, fitness and tips

4 More Ways to Improve Your Informal Learning

The final part of my series on how to become a professional cricket coach looks at the role of the internet and creating your own practical opportunities to extend your learning.

To get up to speed with the rest of this series, take a look at part 1, part 2 and part 3.

So where do I go online to build my knowledge? Apart from PitchVision Academy of course! A couple of websites that I visit frequently are:


  • Eric Cressey: This is great for advice on general strength development and more importantly for me is to support my understanding of strength and conditioning drills and exercises that help to support the development of powerful and healthy throwers. Keeps things simple and demonstrates lots of exercises that require very little specialist kit.
  • Impress Coaching: Mark Sheasby is a world leader in Neuro-Linguistic Programming and the use of language to maximise coaching impact. You guys know how much I believe in the power of language. Mark reviews Elite managers, coaches and players statements and messaging through the press and then critiques it in relation to performance benefit or coaching intervention value.

It is fascinating to see the mistakes that coaches make in their language without being aware of its potential impact on their players. Mark highlights positive patterns and not so good ones and it is good to then run the patterns through your head before speaking with your own players.

I often find myself reviewing my own language patterns and think “Mark would have liked that” or “No wonder that didn’t work, I framed that point terribly when talking with Tom” as a result of my learning through the Impress coaching website.

Coach Development podcasts

Well there is only one that you guys need isn’t there? I know I am biased but I listen to the PitchVision Academy Cricket Show every week even though I am on. I regularly hear something that I didn’t during our recording that then impact positively on my work that given week. Get involved!

Create your own opportunities

I am lucky, if I want to watch other coaches in action at Millfield School then I am only yards from world class rugby, football, swimming and squash coaches (and more to boot).

But I make the opportunity for myself to watch these other coaches in action.

From these observation sessions, I often pick up warm ups, drills, use of language patterns and behaviours that elicit quality results from players that I can embed into my own coaching style.

When was the last time you watched another good coach so that you could pick up some tips?

Another one to watch is how other coaches react during game time! This is revealing and again, we can pick up on both good and bad behaviours. This can be quite funny at times too!

During my time, I have worked alongside or observed many coaches from outside of cricket who have given me insights into my own development needs:

  • Sir Bobby Robson, Ex-England Football Coach. Things that stood out were his passion for further knowledge, enthusiasm for the sport and the people who play it. I worked with Sir Bobby when he was 70 years old and he was incredible. Always asking questions, to everyone (even me!).
  • Arsene Wenger, Arsenal Manager - Arsene has an eye on every player and every coach from the U17’s through to the 1st XI. Verging on a control freak, he never misses a session and designs his office and training grounds to maximise his exposure through the whole club. Attention to detail at its best.
  • Sir Clive Woodward. Innovation, Innovation, Innovation. Mr “How to squeeze any marginal gains out of any given situation or plan”. The King of the "1 Percenter".

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