Portugal-based International Football Academy de Portugal (IFAPT) has spelled out a holistic football methodology. The recommendations, guidelines and objectives we offer our licensees or partners around the world, are to develop a more sustained football programme. These objectives entail free partnership and use of our brand name anywhere in the world where we do not have a representation at this time to promote this coaching education of coaches and players.
Says, Elvis J. Goes, “I strongly believe that education and empowerment of others can only make this world a better place. There is a bible saying “give the man a fish and you feed him for a day, teach the man to fish and you feed him for life”… I believe it’s true. I feel if you want to get the youth and nations out of poverty and miseries of life, then educate them, empower them and teach them self-sustaining skills”.
The main reasons for implementing the IFAPT methodology are as follows:
All centres operating under the IFAPT philosophy shall become a Football Education Centre;
- To impart structured training protocols
- Have the facilities and modalities so that individuals attain the highest level of development
- Create a habit for regular activities
- To develop in all athletes at the academy a positive attitude
- To develop healthy habits on and off the court
Economically viable centres for IFAPT and the partners;
- Our goals are to give each partner all the tools to maximise the use of its space with well-organised programmes to have multiple revenue streams and sustain its operations
- Help our partners to establish goals and objectives to monetise using the name of our partnership, our programmes and also our international collaborations
Every centre of IFAPT will be a talent search centre with very well-defined specific guidelines;
- All centres will have a well-defined athletes evaluation system to find the gifted and talented, to move them ahead with well-organised principles to keep up with their development
- These principles are to be applied to all the age-groups as one or more will break away from the rest of the pack as players of higher calibre and hence the need for identifying these athletes and nurturing them to a higher degree of competition including international exposure to test and expand their abilities.
Image protection and honouring the philosophy;
-The IFAPT philosophy, methodology and ideology must be protected and advanced in the true spirit of development
- There must be no discrimination or other ill-practices within that centre or venue against the youth or its members by the partners (owners or licensees of IFAPT)
- Have a plan to continue to grow its operations as well as the brand name of IFAPT for future economic values and growth.
Based on the above objectives, principles, goals and philosophies; you as a coach do a self-evaluation to see if you fit the bill, if you do? Good for you. If you do not start your journey of educating yourself as it’s vital that you impact the youth with the whole truth, no fallacies, no myths about their all-round development as it’s imperative for their future as a footballer and as an individual in a society.
Here are some assumptions and recommendations as you do the self-evaluation as a coach or an administrator to find the right individuals to impart the programme at your centre or academy.
At IFAPT, we recommend the following characteristics in the individuals, which you hire or employ as coaches or trainers at the academy to build the next top athletes.
• Do they have the love for the game, passion and dedication?
• Do they have the knowledge of the game in totality and willingness to learn and be teachable?
• Do they have the ability to communicate or communication skills (must be taught if not)?
• Do they have the perseverance, patience and aspirations to grow as a coach?
• Are they well-organised and responsible with time and tasks?
• Do they have the leadership qualities, who knows how to handle authority and power and what is their style of coaching? What is their maturity level(High or Low)?
• Do they have the competencies and abilities in demonstrations to live by example?
• Are they adaptable to the changing environments with unbiased opinions about youth under his or her guidance?
The teacher or football coach must understand that he or she is entrusted upon the development of human raw materials, which has to be moulded with all competencies such as the technical, tactical, physical, psychosocial and mental growth. The individual coaches must have the core competencies defined above, if not every effort must be made to develop these competencies through structured and organised curricula to integrate the technical knowledge as well as the educational pedagogical interventions in comprehensively developing all-round athletes. Hence it’s important to follow with a little bit of flexibility the IFAPT Portuguese curricula, (a proven and time-tested system of development) which is key to the success of the youth.
IFAPT encourages creativity of the coaches as part of the implementation process and part of the knowledge within the context of execution of the tasks such as planning, training units, sessions with objectives and proper selection of drills. The systems of youth developments are not considered as rigid and must do it this way or highway! These suggestions and ideas are time-tested and proven principles and has room for changes overtime as the society and individuals needs are ever changing in this complex world we live in.
The core skills of a teacher or a coach are:
• Dedication, love and passion for the profession
• Knowledge on teaching the game and about the game
• Respect to follow our curricula and not venture too far from our principles
• Be an effective communicator and leader (understanding all the preferences of the individuals you are addressing collectively and individually)
• Be self organised as it’s important to have organised training sessions and a long term plan in action
• Have a positive attitude towards the athletes you train even though there will be days of challenges and obstacles
• Have a great public image as well as be a law-abiding citizen because you are entrusted with the highest honour of developing a fellow individual
In the process of self-evaluation and finding the correct person, I must say that there are no perfect individuals who will fit the bill, but the goal is to develop a coach with the following leadership qualities and attributes to fit the IFAPT project:
• A person who is persuasive and tolerant
• Has an academic background in his approach of teaching
• Personable and presentable qualities
• Respects and understands the correlation of interpersonal relationships
• A person who can develop a climate of trust and credibility with his peers and students
• And above all, a conviction to be the best you can be!
If you have all these qualities and more, then you are on your way to be a leader in your own capacity and fit the profile to be the best coach or teacher of this game.
However, a word of caution as I conclude these recommendations and suggestion of self-evaluation as a football coach – Ask yourself what kind of a leader you will be?
The different types of leadership styles:
• A dictator or imposing leader whose will is the final and no consideration to the youth preferences and personalities
• Or perhaps a free-spirited leader who teaches democracy of development with liberal leadership principles, who respects no instructions and neither imposes any on others and give the full autonomy to the individual athletes.
• Perhaps you are a born leader with inherent qualities of abiding principles, know how to adapt to the system and govern within the rules and regulations of the company or institution that has appointed you in that capacity.
Either way, any particular leadership style is not wrong, since the context in discussion of this topic is to evaluate yourself within the guidelines to accomplish the best outcomes for the job you are hired to do or as you prepare yourself to be the best you can be as a football coach.
My recommendations are very simple and brief; firstly, educate yourself in the basics of communications and leadership skills through many programmes available online as well as in-person courses on leadership and communications education. To meet these core requirements as a communicator and leader to serve in the highest capacity possible.
Secondly, start your journey to educate yourself on all the components of football training process and more comprehensive understanding of the game in all its moments and finer intricacies. I call it the ‘art and science of football’ because they both go hand in hand to have the best outcomes on the field. Check out www.thefootballstop.com
Our free academy partnership www.ifapt.com provides the academies around the world as well as individuals all the tools and resources to have a comprehensive knowledge about this game addressing all the four pillars of the players’ development; such as the physical components, technical components, tactical components and psychosocial and mental components required to impart a more complete knowledge of the game.
However, one component you as a coach or and academy owner cannot control and that is the football ecosystem in your country or state or locality. You will need to adapt in that case to the best of your ability. At times you will need to create your own mini league system or arrange for practice games or travel to find good competition to fulfill the missing components in your football ecosystem.
I hope you will do your self-evaluation and continue forward on this noble profession of teaching the game of football! Thank you for reading.