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Trio Delivers Personal Development For Aspiring CoachesThursday, November 16, 2023 - 3:51 PM

Three high performance experts have delivered a valuable personal development session for local coaches. 

Dual Olympic hockey gold medallist Kate Starre, Fremantle Dockers AFLW Assistant Coach Craig Thomas and highly regarded Strength and Conditioning Coach Jason Weber have presented sessions on Incorporating Sports Science into your Football Program at Ernest Johnson Reserve. 

Starre and Thomas offered insights on how best to utilise Sports Science in football. 

Apart from her decorated playing career, Starre has alsocoached hockey at a high level and was the High-Performance Manager for the Fremantle Dockers AFLW program for four seasons and currently is a researcher at the Australian National University. 

Thomas played Teal Cup (State 18’s) for WA and has more than 20 years coaching experience. 

He was named the WAFL Colts Coach of the Year during his tenure at West Perth and held various coaching positions in the Fremantle Dockers AFLW program. 

Webber provided expertise on avoiding stress related injuries in developing athletes. 

Jason has a PhD in Biomechanics and was the Strength and Conditioning Coach for the Wallabies between 2002-2007. 

He also held the position as High-Performance Manager at Fremantle from 2009-2020 and was responsible for overseeing a highly successful program which produced regular finals appearances.  

Webber is currently the CEO and founder of SpeedSig, a Software that extends the capability of GPS hardware. 

Newly appointed South Fremantle Colts Coach Matt Rogers attended the course. 

“I think any events where you can further your knowledge is extremely valuable,” Rogers said. 

“No one person has all the answers so you’d be mad not to take in all the information and expertise that you can. 

“As a coach you always have your own ideas on what things might look like but it’s crucial to have a “growth mindset” and show an ability to take onboard alternative ways of doing things, especially from those who have been at elite level for a long time. 

“I also think there is value in networking with the coaches from other clubs, and they will no doubt have the same challenges as you, so I see a real benefit in building relationships with your peers and connecting off field.”

Rogers, a former WAFL player with Perth and Swan Districts, came away from the event with lessons learned.  

“I discovered the importance of gathering data for each drill to enable you to best plan your sessions," he said.

“There were also a few tips around creating an efficient session and reducing downtime, encouraging line coaches to coach in drill as opposed to before or after, and making the session/drills visible for players before training so they already know what’s coming and the focus points for each.  

“Also, the importance of communication with S&C because football will always be the primary focus, but the S&C data enables us to optimise our athletes. 

“And finally, ensuring there is always a purpose.” 

Jenna Allomes has taken charge of East Perth’s WAFLW side. 

“It was a great opportunity from the WA Football Commission to run an event like this for all the clubs,” Allomes said. 

“Not only was it insightful content presented by some experts in their field, but it also gave me the opportunity to network with all coaches, clubs and the presenters themselves. 

“Networking is a huge part of learning and sharing and I'm glad there was a decent amount of time given to this. 

Allomes believes the advice she received can have immediate results. 

“There was definitely a lot of information to take out of tonight that can be implemented straight away,” she said. 

“Jason spoke really highly about how important it is to think about the players in your training sessions and the role as coach we play in managing players injuries. 

“I also enjoyed Kate and Craig speak about the relationship between the S&C and head coach and how they worked together to prepare the players through getting the most out of their training sessions.”