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Rebecca Kelly rising through the ranks

Rebecca Kelly rising through the ranks

Greg Mackett8 Apr - 07:00
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Rebecca looks back after completing the latest step in her coaching career.

Having started working on the Hertfordshire Girls CAG Performance Pathway in 2021, I applied for the Advanced Coaching Course (Level 3) and my application was successful in the winter of 2022. Getting to the point of becoming a qualified Level 3 coach was both an enjoyable and challenging experience; requiring a lot of self-reflection, trial and error, reading and questioning. I explored a few rabbit holes along the way.

The course started with a batch of e-learning modules including: Coaching a team, coaching the future cricketer, various cricket disciplines, biomechanics, S&C, and sports psychology. Following this, it was time to take a trip up to Derby to meet the cohort and do some practical work. This was a great opportunity to learn from some highly qualified coaches and also experienced fellow coaches from around the UK. We shared ideas to come up with some performance based engaging sessions, which challenged our thinking.

On our return, the real work began. I started by recording one of my coaching sessions. This was eye-opening and led me to tweak some of my coaching behaviours. My mentor, Cookie Patel, also arranged for me to attend a Boys EPP wicket keeping session run by David Ripley at Northants. I was able to shadow him for a couple of hours and pick his brains about his coaching practises. Wicket-keeping is a specific area of interest for me having wicket-kept for club and county. I feel comfortable delivering this discipline, but less so with pace bowling. Therefore, I chose this as one of my skills for the 1-2-1 alongside batting. Wicket keeping, spin bowling and fielding would be allocated to my group delivery sessions and I also choose to explore ‘Developing Team Behaviours’ and ‘Developing Captains’.

Over the summer of 2023, I worked with my 1-2-1 who was an U12 on the Girls Performance Pathway. We identified the areas to work on, looked at video footage, and built her learning journey from there. I started reading up about Constraints Led Approach (CLA), which had really picked my interest during one of the e-learning modules. This in turn led to finding out more about: movement patterns, coaching language, equipment constraints, the biomechanics of a female athlete and psychology. There, see?…Rabbit holes!!

The great thing about the Level 3 process and all the self-reflection you do as a coach, is that whilst you do the process on your own, there is always support on hand. You are allocated a Coach Developer as a mentor and can contact any of the coaches who delivered a session. In this instance, I contacted Dr Paul Felton – who delivered our Biomechanics session – for pace bowling advise. I was also very fortunate to have colleagues on hand to both bounce ideas off and learn from, and was also in touch with my cohort from Derby.

As my learning journey continued, so did my coaching practise. I looked into mental health as a coach who delivers primarily to adolescent girls in club, school and performance environments. I continue to look into S&C for female athletes, and will be looking to do a course in Youth S&C through my scholarship. ‘The Female Body Bible’ states only 6% of sport’s science research in 2020 was conducted exclusively for women. Break this down solely to cricket, and this figure is be much less. There is potentially a lot more to discover about biomechanics of female athletes and I can’t wait to see this research as and when it comes out to help inform my coaching further.

Having had my professional conversation with a Coach Developer and become a certified Level 3 coach, my learning journey will still continue as I look into new areas and add layer upon layer of coaching experiences.

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