Andrea Buch writes I am looking for insights: How does your club define ‘Competitive Masters’? What does it mean to be ‘a competitor’?
The more mature I get as an athlete, and the more athletes I encounter when I coach, the more intrigued I am by this question.
There has been a softening in my personal approach/abilities as an athlete in terms of my expectations for going fast, but I still love to get after it; to do whatever I can to get my bowball in front. Even if the strength/fitness of youth is not there, I can recognize those who are ‘competitors’ in my peers and my athletes, and those are the people who I want to row with/put in top boats and fast lineups. Hopefully they have the skill and fitness pieces too, but everyone is coming from different backgrounds. At a minimum, if you are on a ‘Competitive Team’, the desire to push yourself and the understanding of how to push yourself is foundational.
For some people it is innate, and for some it is a learned skill.
I’d love to hear insights any other coach or team has used to define ‘Competitive’ when you are dealing with a population that is so diverse age-wise (for example, my team has athletes ranging from 22 to 70), and coming from a background of various athletic experiences. One person’s idea of being ‘a competitor’ is not always the same as another person’s. I am not trying to invalidate another person’s experience or their effort. I am seeking concrete words, phrases or standards that other teams have used to successfully define the mission of and membership of their team. The desire to be on a Competitive team or be surrounded by Competitive athletes because you think you should be and that is where you want to be is very indistinct.
Alternatively, have you got insights into how you have coached or develop masters athletes to find a new level of competitiveness?
To re-define what ‘going hard’ is? Has anyone out there had any breakthroughs as a coach or an athlete?