Football training should adapt to every trainee’s unique traits by way of courses specially designed for their progress in specific areas.
What would we make of doctors that prescribe before reaching a diagnosis? What would we think of architects that place the foundations of their building before studying the very last they build on? How would we go about valuing an academy that imparts an education without considering the idiosyncrasies of each and every student?
“Building and developing a player can’t be thought of as a unilateral process. The path towards becoming a footballer is different for everyone”, explains José Ignacio Marcet. “The way isn’t paved, it’s traced according to the unique aspects of every individual. A student mustn’t be moulded into an existing educational process. On the contrary, the process has be to adapted to the player’s necessities, like a tool would”.
This is what is known as tailor-made philosophy. According to the president of Marcet, “our main concern is placing the student at the centre of the training programme. Just like tailoring a suit. Naturally, first you take measurements. That is, defining the strengths and weaknesses of every student”. Simply put, evaluation.
“our main concern is placing the student at the centre of the training programme. Just like tailoring a suit”
To determine a player’s condition, a vast array of parameters need to be considered such as their country of origin, footballing culture, previous experience… But above all, coordinates for evaluation – capable of defining abilities and competences – should be established: objective rubrics based on precise measurements reviewed by experts.
“This methodology calls for the recording of the majority of its training sessions”, explains Marcet. “A group of evaluators that work independently from the trainers analyses the recorded images to keep count of the trainees’ progress in detail and determine what state or condition they’re in as well as setting specific objectives. From there, player are then grouped according to their ability, age and condition”.
“A clear-cut roadmap allows players to experience a progression that even they will see in themselves”
The next step is adapting the sporting education to each and every trainee’s characteristics, creating sessions specially designed to guarantee an evolution and improvement on specifically targeted aspects of technique, strategy, decision-making, etc. A detailed plan that is moulded to the educational demands of the players and that is also compatible with possible sporting, academic or family obligations . A totally personalised learning strategy that can apply to face-to-face or long distance lessons, intensive courses or long term programmes, with the help of new technologies, bio-impendance reports or structural analyisis.
Each and every player has different needs at different times in their sporting evolution. For this very reason, adaptability is key for anyone keen on progressing. Imparted at a considered pace and with tailored objectives. “With this approach, students get to know their own strengths, weaknesses and key objectives”, adds Marcet’s president. “A clear-cut roadmap allows players to experience a progression that even they will see in themselves, something I believe is fundamental in terms of their motivation and positive reinforcement. In the end, it’s a simple matter of moulding the Marcet Method to every single variable of an international, intercultural project like our own”.