Sports coaches should not miss this tip from a top guitar teacher. Don’t believe the myth that practice game activities should always be carried out at game speed. Obsession with “game speed” training is a fast track to low skill levels for most athletes according to this expert. Learn how to identify the “sweet spot” speed for perfect skill development and see your athletes improve their skill level and performance faster than you would believe. And rapid improved performance is more fun for the athletes too. Read the story… then give it a try. Click on the pic!
Tips from coaches
Imagine waking up on a day when you have a big game and realizing that you feel crap. You don’t even want to play. You would rather just stay in bed. Whether its illness or emotions it doesn’t make any difference. The last place you want to be is on the sports field. But your team needs you! What do you do? Socrates reckons that sports experts normally provide crap advice. He wonders how they even get to become known as experts. But Socrates reckons that former NRL great and Rugby League radio commentator Luke Lewis knows a bit about getting athletes up for the big game when they don’t have their heart in it. Here Socrates’ paraphrases what he thinks is Lewis’ brilliant advice. Click the pic and read on. Essential reading for every athlete of every ability and age!
Sports curmudgeon, Socrates, reckons that sports coaches have lots of pretty darn stupid things to say to their players but he ranks “I wanna hear lots of talking” up there at the top is the stupidest. Socrates wonders why coaches would want players to babble on pointlessly when the noise that they are making may well drown out genuinely important messages that players may wish to deliver to each other. Click the pic to get Socrates’ latest sports rant about the “talk it up on the pitch” phenomenon.
There were many great moments in the final Wallabies versus France rugby test last week but according to Socrates, one stood our far above all the others. Was it a great try? A brilliant tackle? A perfect scrum or line-out? A fantastic bit of work at the break-down? According to the rotund Greek hooker it was none of those things. He reckons that the highlight of the game was a much quieter, simpler and more subdued moment. A moment that might have escaped the attention of millions of spectators. Find out about Socrates favorite moment of the test. Click the pic.
Masks, QR codes, lockdowns, pandemics… we live in strange and mysterious times. Socrates discovered, when he went to the local pool for a training swim, that the strangeness that is COVID is even stranger when it comes to exercise and training. Understandably, he found wearing a mask right up to the moment he jumped into the pool odd but then he discovered that things were just about to get even weirder. Read about the mystery of the missing PPR here. Click on the pic and all shall be revealed.
True story from the world of sport
Have you ever wished that you could meet and have a conversation with someone you idolize? What would you say to your idol to convince them to want to stay in the conversation? What would they say in response to your brilliant social skills? How would the conversation go? How would it leave you feeling? An Australian ex-professional athlete who had played with and against some of the greatest basketball talent that this country has ever seen (Andrew Gaze, Ricky Grace, Shane Heal, Phil Smythe) once, by chance, had a meeting with possibly the greatest and most famous professional sports person that has ever lived. The superstar he bumped into, in a New York elevator, just happened to be the Aussie basketballer’s idol. How did the meeting turn out? Click the pic and discover the six most memorable words in this Australian point guard’s life.
The blokes said that the girls will never be able to surf as well as them. Did they have a point? Film makers Michaele Perske, Christopher Nelius and Julie Anne De Nuvo take a look at the early female surfers of the seventies and eighties and explore their lives and careers in their new documentary film, “Girls Can’t Surf”. Amazing characters from professional surfing history like Jodie Cooper, Pauline Menczer, Pam Burridge and Lisa Anderson describe the lousy treatment, horrible conditions and discrimination they experienced in the early days of women’s pro surfing. Check out Socrates’ review. Click the image and read on?
At their prime they were the best in their class… but twenty years down the track do they still perform? Do one, or the other, or both offer value for money into future years or does their advanced years and way too many kilometres on the clock mean that they should be avoided like the plague. Socrates test drives the 1983 model Storm hooker and the 1977 model Bucc quarterback, rates their present-day performance, and considers the likelihood of them providing a satisfying driving experience into the future. Is one a better buy than the other? Is one more likely to win future championships than the other? Don’t consider buying a Cameron Smith or a Tom Brady without having read Socrates’ road test comparison report first!
rugby league shock
In an exclusive that is sure to shock the sports loving world, Senior Journalist for Sportsocratic, Socrates revealed that, according to a top football administrator, the popular State of Origin rugby league series format is about to be given a major shake up.
A senior Australian Rugby League official recently leaked to Socrates that the ARL are looking at tweaking the State of Origin team selections approach for future interstate matches. While not being totally dissatisfied with current arrangements the official argued that it was experimenting with selection rules that turned interstate Rugby League fixtures into the success that it is today, and decision makers should not rest on their laurels by not considering possible future selection possibilities. Get the details about the changes ahead in Socrates’ exclusive report. Click the pic and start reading.
The body and how it communicates
Socrates wonders why the surfing images he likes the best aren’t always the best surf shots or best surfers. Sometimes he gets a gut reaction to photos of ordinary surfers doing seemingly ordinary things. Dancer and choreographer Lewis Major thinks that the audience for any dance performance should naturally understand what a good dance is trying to communicate because, like the dancers on the stage, the audience have bodies. They bypass a theoretical understanding of the action. They have a visceral reaction! Their bodies get it. Socrates thinks that surfing is the same. We appreciate surfing and surfing photos because our bodies help us to get what is going on. It’s a gut thing! When watching (or looking at photographs) we can join in the dance. And it doesn’t have to be a technically brilliant dance to appreciate it!
learning about life through sport
While preparing a thesis on Friedrich Nietzche, philosopher John Kaag took at trip to the Swiss Alps to experience some of the places and pastimes that influenced the 19th century Swiss/German philosopher’s writing. While Nietzche didn’t specifically discuss his exploration of the high mountains in his work, the impact that the mountains had on his thinking became clear to Kaag has he emulated Nietzche’s hikes around Splugen and Piz Corvatsch. The significance and importance of suffering and the impact that walking has for humans in the way that it provides immediate physical benefit as well as liberates the mind and unleashes it’s potential for creativity were just some of the things made real to Kaag. The way that mountains enable humans to sense their own ephemeral nature also became clear. Take a walk with the young John Kaag and discover how important hiking, movement and mountains can be in the search for the understanding of human existence, knowledge and experience.
This excerpt from John Kaag’s book Hiking With Nietzche (Published 2018 – Farrar, Straus and Giroux) is reproduced with his permission.
To share John Kaag’s journey click on the pic… and discover how his search for Nietzche’s philosophy nearly cost him his life!
This good looking young bloke was a handy rugby league half back and a cracker fielder on the cricket oval (though he couldn’t bat or bowl to save himself). He also had a pretty handy back hand in tennis. The handy back-hand he still has! Anthony “Albo” Albanese may be a sports tragic who would still love to win a competition or two but he knows that sport has more going for it than the buzz you might get out of winning the next match. Great sport is about great community thinks Albo!
Waves of Pain
The ocean never fails to surprise with its choices for methods of torture of its adherents… as Byron Bay young gun surfer, Jack, discovered a few years back. While Jack had his heart in his mouth when he turned up for his surf lesson to discover that the Ocean at Tallow Beach was in an angry mood, he would never have imagined, in a million years, that his session would end up as it did. Click the pic and read about Jack’s adventure and discover how weird the ocean can be when it gets grumpy.
Imagine growing up around big waves, being addicted to surfing and then being transferred to a work place more well-known for its bears, forests and snow than surfing breaks. It can be a cruel world! Under such circumstances young folk would do almost anything for a surfing fix. Imagine yourself taking your “once in a blue moon chance” to get a wave and having that wave work you over so bad that it not only bloody nearly ruins your year but almost ruins your career. That’s what happenned to one young fella from Perth. Now that is a serious “Wave of Pain”. Usually, a day in the waves is bliss. Ocassionally it is hell. Read about one rare hell day here.
Philosopher’s Sports Bar
“Bill” could have been a great rugby player… but he was more interested in other things. Do people display characteristics of their personal and working lives through their performances on the sporting field? Socrates describes the sporting life of one of his favorite people, and shows how the skill and character of one of Australia’s best journalists was always on show, even as a young man, whether on the rugby field, the basketball court or even on a quiet country headland when threatened with fisticuff by a big bloke wearing a blue uniform. Get “Bill’s” story here. Click the pic!
Multi-skilled and multi-award-winning sports presenter, sports expert, sociologist and philosopher, Aaron Kearney, joins Socrates in the philosopher’s sports bar to run through some of the changes that we might expect in our sporting lives when the dust from the Covid19 epidemic settles. Not only does Kearney describe a bunch of changes that are likely in the world of sport over the next twelve months but he has a bit of a wish list as well. Let’s knock the boring sports celebrities down a peg or two might be one of his hopes! Other than a democratization of the world of sports stardom there is not a lot of negative in the sporting world of 2021 that Kearney imagines. Check out his conversation with our beloved “Round Mound of Scrumming-Down” (Socrates) here. Just click on the pic.
Like many others I have always viewed horse racing with ambivalence. Previous and current generations of my extended family have had strong equestrian links but, on the matter of horse racing, opinions of family members have been split down the middle for decades. Attitudes were so powerful and entrenched that it was strictly forbidden, at family gatherings, to mention to Aunty Betty and Uncle Dick that cousin Matt and Uncle Dave kept race horses. And so, as this recent Melbourne Cup came around, yet again, my feelings towards the event were mixed. I had immense admiration for the athlete horses and jockeys for the extraordinary and difficult sporting event that they were going to participate in but I had huge reservations about the potential cruelty of the race and the gambling, drinking and foolish outfit wearing (described by many as “fashion”) I found repulsive.
Anyway, the first Tuesday in November came and went and, yet again, the horror stories that came out of the event far outweighed the heart-warming and life-affirming stories. Another horse had died during the running… and yet another jockey was handed a punishment for excessive use of the whip. As the news unfolded about the running of the race, my former ambivalence was rapidly swinging towards opposition.
The next morning, I heard Sydney academic Paul McGreevy on the radio discussing the Melbourne Cup. In the course of the interview he raised an issue that surprised me and, I suspect, would surprise most people. He and his research colleagues compared the performance of horses competing in “hands and heels” races (races where whipping is not permitted) with performance of horses competing in traditional, whip-use-permitted, events. They discussed their findings in a report for “The Conversation.” Here it is. Click the picture above to get the story… and read on!
aphorisms, insights and wisdom… about fishing!
sports style – or lack of it
There are hundreds of fashion choices that look ridiculous, foolish, horrible and offensive in a sporting context but seven particular style choices brand the “sinner” almost beyond redemption. Socrates smugly sticks his massive nose in the air and points the finger of sartorial disgrace at the “sins” he finds most hideous.