Tag Archive for 'Competitività'

How it’s difficult to be competitive

“To accomplish something difficult. Mastering, manipulating, or organizing physical objects, human beings, or ideas. Do it as quickly and independently as possible. Go beyond obstacles and maintain high standards. Excelling for oneself. To rival and surpass others. Increase awareness through observing one’s own successful experiences that are the result of one’s talents.”

H.A. Murray said in 1938.

I dedicate these words to the young athletes in Italy who in team sports play little because of foreigners.

In individual sports certainly they can compete, since no one can take away their team place, sometimes they train alone or alone, at best with coaches and trainers equally willing but alone too.

Best wishes and may your persistence and dedication always be your friend.

Are you competitive

A misunderstanding of which many athletes are victims is in justifying their performance in this way: “I lost but I played well”.

Some time ago, talking with a sailing athlete, I heard him say: “I got off to a good start, the others got off to a better start, but I can’t say I got off to a bad start”.

Agreed but this is a wrong attitude, in this case the question is not so much in the interpretation – to start well or badly – the goal must be to start in front, to compete from the beginning with your opponents for this purpose. To me, any other goal is wrong.

As Martin Seligman reminds us, when we say others were better than us, we are giving a global assessment. If that were true, we might as well quit the race, because they are better.

We need to train the competitiveness of our athletes, following what Rod Laver says: “Never let anyone think that it’s easy to score points with you.”

Let’s continue this in-depth …

Nadal: I play to be the most competitive

Play to be the most competitive. This seems to be the purpose of Nadal, and not to become the No.1 again or exceed Federer for number of victories.

Nadal plays tennis because he likes this sport and he is constantly striving to keep this opportunity as long as possible. He understood and integrated in him that to win you don’t have to worry about winning, but only the best diet for him, the best training for him, the best self-care for him determine the most competitive man on the court.

What happens before the match determines what he will do in the court. The game is the peak of this preparation aimed at experiencing the maximum pleasure in demonstrating to themself and the world his competitiveness.

Nadal vince gli Us Open dopo una sfida infinita contro Medvedev

Who is a competitor

“To accomplish something difficult. To master, manipulate or organize physical objects, human beings, or ideas. Do it as fast and autonomously  as possible. Go beyond the obstacles having the highest standards. Be excellent for themselves. Compete and have success. Increase the awareness through the observation of yours success experiences coming from the inner talent.” This words have been written in 1938 by H.A. Murray.

I dedicate these words to the athletes at the beginning of the new Olympic quadrennial. I wish them to find their best moments in sport.

Best wishes and your toughness and dedication be your best friends.

The young athlete’s motivation among fun, competitivity and skills

Coaches are strongly aware of the close interaction between motivation and learning. The motivation, however, is a theoretical concept that can not be directly observed and that can only be speculated on the basis of the behavior of athletes. In any case, the knowledge of the motivational processes is a crucial factor for every coach, who wants to teach effectively.

The most important reasons recognized by young athletes are related to:

  • competence (learn and improve their sports skills)
  • fun (excitement, challenge and action)
  • affiliation (being with friends and making new friends),
  • team (being part of a group or team)
  • compete (compete, succeed, win)
  • fitness (feeling fit or feel stronger)

Conversely, the main causes of the decrease in sport motivation or drop out are to be ascribed to a lack of fun, lack of success,  competition stress, lack of support from parents, misunderstandings with the coach, boredom and sport injuries.

In summary, these are the three main needs that the athlete wants to meet through the sport:

  •  fun- it satisfies the need for stimulation and excitement;
  • competence – it fulfills the need to acquire skills and to feel self-determined in the activities
  • being with others – it satisfies the need for affiliation with others and being in a group.

With reference to the need of stimulation it can be stated that:

  •  The success is built by calibrating the program to be carried out with the skills and the age of the athlete.
  • The training must be kept challenging and varied.
  • Each athlete must be active; do not let the athletes time to get bored.
  • During training the coach has to provide athletes with the opportunity to perform challenging exercises.
  • The coach must teach athletes to identify realistic goals.
  • During the training is useful to establish times when athletes practice without being evaluated by the coach.

Regarding the need for competence, it’s up to the coach to stimulate both the child and the expert not only to learn specific sport techniques but, also, to develop the desire to progress and curiosity about themselves and the environment in which they act.

At this regard, the coach has to remember that:

  • Specific goals, which are difficult and a challenge are more effective than specific targets but easy to reach, the goals defined in terms of the do-your-best and non-targets.
  • Athletes must have enough skills to reach their goals.
  • The goals are more effective when they are defined in terms of specific behavior than when they are defined in a vague manner.
  • The intermediate goals have to interact with the long-term goals.

As for the need to affiliation, it’s based on the need to belong to a group and to be accepted, establishing meaningful relationships. Satisfying the need for affiliation and self-esteem, the athletes experience greater confidence in themselves and more self-control. In fact every athlete and coach knows from experience that when there are communication problems between them it’s difficult to follow the training program that has been set.

The key points to satisfy the need for affiliation and self-esteem of the athletes can be summarized as follows:

  • Listen to the demands of athletes.
  • Understanding the needs expressed, orienting them within the annual program of training.
  • Determine the role of each athlete, setting realistic goals for each one.
  • Openly acknowledge the efforts made to collaborate on team goals.
  • Teach players to correct each other.
  • Provide technical instruction and encourage personal commitment.
  • Reduce the competitive stress  rewarding their commitment and reducing the importance attached to the result.

In other words, the coachs to develop in their athletes the sense of belonging to that particular group, must appear credible and consistent in their attitudes and behaviors. To be credible the coaches must be truthful with all their athletes: young and old, experienced and inexperienced. At this regards it’s necessary to:

  • Share with the athletes the technical program, highlighting their skills and areas for improvement.
  • Explain the reasons of techniques and strategies: so they will remember better.
  • Do not make promises, personally or indirectly, that they might not be able to maintain.
  • Answer questions with competence, honesty and sensitivity.
  • Avoid pronounce phrases which might affect the athletes’ sel-esteem (eg:”You’ll never part of the group of the best). As a guide the coaches has to ask themselves:” If I were an athlete, I would be told this by the coach? “

Do you coach yourself to compete?

When the young athletes have acquired the technical skills required by the sport they enjoy and have become skilled in the execution of specific sport actions, it becomes important to train them to compete. These are the goals of the coaching that takes place from 16 years for most of the sports and that will lead some to become world-class athletes. One should not confuse the acquired skill with the ability to provide an adequate performance at their own level. Indeed, it’s not difficult to meet young teenagers capable, good from a technical standpoint but not ready to compete. For this reason a part of the training, that with the increase of age will become more significant and wide should be dedicated to achieve the purpose of teaching the athlete to give their best in terms of comparison with other athletes. The coaches should not be afraid to acknowledge that this is an essential goal of their work and the practice must be oriented in this direction. This type of training is intended to teach the athletes to maintain the quality of their performance under the competitive pressure.

Wanted talents? No, it’s the wrong country

While the world’s major companies leading among them for years a war to have inside the best talents and into Google are dozens thepages by selecting “talent war”,  we live in a nation where those two words evoke little interest.  It’s what showed from a study conducted by Bruno Pellegrino, University of California, and Luigi Zingales, University of Chicago, according to which the Italian entrepreneurs, thankfully not all, prefer to have “yes manager” as collaborators, ready at any moment to please them in their choices at the expense of independent and competent men and women. It confirms the reluctance of the Italian business to the performance culture, combining the ability to take risks and innovate with the need to keep a profit budget and in its place spreads the anti-ethic familism, which selects individuals for co-optation. In this way  it’s left the road allowing the pursuit of success as the highest expression of quality business and it will start that one where favoritisms and patronages become the dominant factors of success. The Italian world of professional football once again is the mirror of this country and of this type of entrepreneurship: many low level foreigner players and a few young Italian talents. In fact, in most of the teams there are few Italian players and only this year have been introduced 84 new players, which further restrict the access to our young talents. The damage that it has been created is very serious. Hindered by the fact the young Italian to play, it spreads the idea that it’s useless to have youth activities, the best players will not find clubs willing to have them in the team, therefore they are obliged to go abroad as is the case of Immobile, Cerci and Verratti. Finally, the clubs spend money unnecessarily for foreign players who are not of value and the teams lose more value because they cannot count on players who want to win and tenacious. There are not explanations allowing to understand this phenome  so destructive for the clubs. Certainly the professionalism of the football managers  is defeated by this approach and the fact that this practice is so widespread evidently not worried indeed it emerges strengthened. Of course there are Italian companies and teams that are based on the culture of performance. Let’s follow them because they are an important piece of the solution of our problems.

(read it on http://www.huffingtonpost.it/../../alberto-cei/)

There are no more free meals

“There are no more free meals” headline the newspaper Corriere della Sera. We never thought that this is just the rule of the sport? “If you are not able to compete is better that you’re home.” Well, that is brutal, but it is reality. In our system widely criticized, however, there is an organization, the Italian Olympic Committee, working to have athletes in a position to win, that means to be competitive. I am the first to say that this role could be played in the best way. Any way there is  a department devoted to prepare for the Olympics,  which provides funding for projects that are designed to implement programs that promote our talents in the world of competitive performance.
In sport there are no free meals: either you win or lose, it will be hard but it’s true and you have to fight also against those who choose shortcuts: doping. In politics the rule is different: we vote on the promise (I’ll remove the taxes, give jobs) and many believe and sling to vote for that party. Our parties should learn from sports, financing ideas and projects that promote competitiveness. Have to say what they want to do for young people who are unemployed, for companies that do not have credit from banks and so on.

Sport teaches us that the proposals must be perceived as simple and feasible and not difficult and bureaucratic. Each person must perceive as achievable even though he has not recommended by someone, because she will be evaluated for her skills and not for the friends. Skills and entrepreneurship are the basis for competitiveness. Familism and recommendation are the rules that lead to corruption wing. The parties must decide which side to take. Use the rules of the sport and have the solution to this dilemma, with the knowledge that you are doing everything, see doping, to destroy it.

Doping in economics is an approach known from  immemorial time, and that involves doing appear to be true (for example, the reduction of taxes or false accounting) what in reality is false. Please do not promise but say what you will do to increase the competitiveness of Italy, because the problem is not taxes, but how to earn money to live in comfort.

(From: http://www.huffingtonpost.it/alberto-cei/la-competitivita-e-assente-lo-sport-puo-insegnarla_b_2648227.html?utm_hp_ref=italy#comments)

Cos’è la competitività

“Portare a termine qualcosa di difficile. Padroneggiare, manipolare o organizzare oggetti fisici, esseri umani o idee. Farlo il più rapidamente e autonomamente possibile. Andare oltre gli ostacoli e mantenere elevati standard. Eccellere per se stessi. Rivaleggiare e superare gli altri. Incrementare la consapevolezza attraverso l’osservazione delle proprie esperienze di successo frutto del proprio talento.” L’ha scritto H.A. Murray nel 1938. Queste parole le dedico ai giovani atleti che in Italia negli sport di squadra giocano poco per via degli stranieri. Negli sport individuali certamente possono gareggiare, poichè nessuno gli può togliere il posto di squadra, però spesso devono allenarsi da soli o da sole, nel migliore dei casi con allenatori e allenatrici altrettanto volenterosi ma soli anch’essi. Auguri e che la vostra tenacia e dedizione vi siano sempre amiche.