21 October 2022 / 3-Min Read
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The question I would like to ask is “Is squash an individual or team sport?”, and of course the answer is individual. For me that’s an important question because all team sports I know of allow coaching during the actual play. Most individual sports don’t. Personally, I feel that no coaching should be allowed at all. I like the idea that its two players trying to find ways to beat each other.
But, I’m not going to change the rules, just because I want it, and so yes, you can have coaching between games. However, it’s not as simple as that. let’s see why.
Trying to assimilate the information your coach or other player is giving you between games can be very hard for people, especially if they have’t practiced it. You come off court hot, tired, stressed and somebody is trying to tell you what you should do. it’s hard enough listening and understanding what they are saying when you are calm, let alone in between games.
In general, what works best is short, simple sentences – clear instructions. Also, don’t give too many instructions. Three at most. KEEP IT SIMPLE!
Whether players actually follow those instructions is another matter because sometimes they feel they are doing the right thing and you are telling them to change. My advice to you as a player is either listen and follow the instructions or don’t talk to anybody between games.
What shot would you recommend she play?
Since the introduction of small mobile phones and bluetooth, people have considered using earpieces and a live call to improve their game, or even cheat. I’ve never done it, but doubt its efficacy. I feel it would take a lot of practice to be able to listen to the instructions given and implement them during the middle of a rally. Of course, perhaps the chat is between rallies and that might really help.
If you are a coach working with a player, you can do that during practice matches from the balcony or behind the glass back wall.
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The 2020 rules from the World Squash Federation↗ have a section called APPENDIX 10 – COACHING LIMITATIONS, which specifically says that equipment can be used to record data but can not be used in between games. So things like the RacketWare Sensor can be used as long as it allows that the equipment specification to continue to be adhered to. The same is true of match analytics. That information can not be passed to the player during the match.
if you are playing a competitive match and need advice, agree with your coach or friend that the information they give you is kept short and simple. Don’t spend the whole time in between game talking. Just a small part. The rest should be spent drinking and refocusing your mind on your gameplan.
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