The Process: Knowing vs. Doing

This entry is part 10 of 28 in the series Leadership

I would estimate that 90% of our players could correctly tell you what to do in 90% of the situations that they face on the court. I think most players know what to do most of the time. What percentage of these opportunities are executed correctly? When do they do what they need to do when they need to do it?

There are thousands of decisions made in every practice and game by each player. We only have time to work on a few of them. Many of these are instinctual and habitual. The best players make and execute good decisions more than most.  The better teams follow the same pattern.  It’s clear that many of these instincts and habits are poor in our game even though the knowledge exists.

Our job as coaches is to bridge that gap. We have to help players turn knowledge into action. We have to develop mental and physical habits that enable players to make good decisions and then execute them precisely.

There is no secret formula. There is no silver bullet or magic pill. It takes time. It doesn’t happen over night. Players must work to transform their knowledge into habits. It is a process.  It can be a long process.  It can be a process filled with failures.  It can be a very uncomfortable process initially.  We must help them.

Shouldn’t we be working to do the same as well? Shouldn’t we be working every day to take what we know and turn it into what we do? Who is helping us? Are we willing to help each other?  Are we willing to accept help from each other?  It’s easy for a player to get in the gym and work on a skill.  That process is pretty well defined.  Building muscle memory only takes physical repetition.  Building “mental muscle memory” is quite different.  That process is not so well outlined.  Yet that’s what we are to do as coaches.  We must know what we teach inside and out.  We must understand the teaching process.  We must understand the communication process.  We must understand the relationship process. These three things are always evolving.  They are always changing.  Are we practicing?  Do we have someone telling us where we can improve? Do we listen?  Do we understand the process of getting better as coaches?

There is plenty of knowledge out there. There are tweets and blogs and books galore about what we should do. There are plenty of people who know. How many of us DO? How can we DO it better?

We tell our players what they need to DO to be able to DO things better. Get up shots. Think differently.  Talk to your teammate. Do these drills to work on these skills. Talk to yourself. Set goals. Work harder. Change your perspective. Lift weights. Run 10 sprints. Jump rope. Be different.

There are countless sentences that we speak to our players on a regular basis that give our players ways of turning the knowing into doing.  We use these sentences to train their minds and their bodies on how to perform.

What sentences do we use for ourselves?  What do we do to turn our knowledge into doing? What do we do to build good habits?  How do we take what we learn from books, blogs, conferences, twitter or just a conversation and turn that into action and habit? Who is coaching the coaches?  Who is demanding that coaches improve? Who is holding coaches accountable? For those of us who want to hold ourselves accountable, what is our “workout plan”? What is our process for getting better at turning our knowledge into action?


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2 thoughts on “The Process: Knowing vs. Doing

  1. Kidd

    Hello 🙂

    1. hoopscollege

      glad the comments are finally working now….I hope you’ll provide some perspective when you have time.

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