Post game processing or the time period immediately following the game is an important window of opportunity for players to learn. Coach Erick Blasing shares a simple tool that he uses with his team to utilize this teaching time.
I mentioned in my last post that one of the best decisions I ever made as a coach in Sparta was to research “Train to Be Clutch” by Josh Metcalf and Jamie Gilbert. Their process is directing people to transformational leadership and increasing mental preparation for life. I am currently reading through their book, Burn Your Goals and it is fantastic. I highly recommend it. Please check out their site for more information on everything clutch as well as a lot of free resources: http://t2bc.com/.
As a team we spent time pre-game as a team with no noise and used a simple visualization process to prepare for that night’s games. While we used the pre-game routine every game we never rolled out the post game processing sheet. As I mentioned before, our pre-game went fantastic and made us a better team. The post-game form is very similar and something that I wish I would have utilized. I plan to implement this fully in the future.
I think a major piece that is often missing from teams is the ability to comprehend the ending of the game.
Often players will either internalize the responsibility for the game’s outcome or place blame on others around them to an extreme that is not proportional with reality.
Using the processing sheets, players can attempt to bring their emotions in check and understand what can be improved upon.
Game 2 of the Western Conference’s 2nd Round, San Antonio and Oklahoma City is a prime example of a game where post game processing could help the team improve. In a crazy ending that saw multiple missed calls against San Antonio, the Spurs still had a shot for the win in the end but did not prevail. While everyone is focusing on that high pressure ending with miscues and sloppy execution, processing sheets can help the players understand that in a 1 point loss, a turnover in the first half could have made the actual difference in the game. If you encounter a similar scenario, the processing sheet can help players look at the game with a clearer vision and understanding.
The post-game is a little more in-depth and would be very useful to have players complete immediately after the game or on the bus ride home. These sheets would be a great help for the players during film study. I hope these help you and your team improve down the road!