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Foundations of player development – environment

This essay is taken from the UC Premier curriculum courses (all levels).

Our principles of play define our approach to the game. Every player, in every age group, should understand our principles and be able to apply them to game situations.

  • Manage oneself
  • Manage the ball
  • Manage space

Recognition, analysis, and management of space is the foundation of our principles of play. The actions of the individual players and the team should be based on our game model.

When we discuss managing oneself with our players, we will use the following sequence of phrases:

  1. Eyes and Ideas
  2. Figure It out and Fake Them Out
  3. Do It, Did It Work

This sequence reflects the thought progression that our players will work through when they encounter a situation.

Eyes and Ideas means that the player will need to be able to scan the environment, determine threats and opportunities, and come up a with a list of possible actions.

Figure It Out and Fake Them Out means that the player will need to determine from the possible actions which one to choose, based on the understandings of the game that we have been developing in our practice sessions and training activities. If possible, we want our players to do some type of deception (feint, misdirection, etc).

Do It, Did It Work means that that the player should perform the action and then decide (reflect) on whether the action worked.

From there, it is back to Eyes and Ideas.

Every player in our program should understand and be able to list the Manage Oneself phrases.