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Welcome to the July 2014 edition titled ‘Master Class Coaching’ provided by internationally renowned coach, Lachlan Tighe. Find out more about Lachlan and his coaching achievements here.

Master Class Coaching
… what factors do you consider/include in coaching successful teams?

A Master Class workshop for coaches conducted by the Bowls Victoria coach development committee and held in Melbourne recently included the above topic for discussion and application.

We workshop attendees were honoured to have as the presenters these six acknowledged leaders of coaching in our sport – Graeme Archer, David Cameron, Graeme Clements, Steve Glasson, Geoff Maskell & Nicole Shortis.

All around the country, and indeed in Glasgow for the 2014 Games, coaches will be applying their skills for the benefit for the players in the bowls teams.

Presuming the bowlers have the technical skills for the relevant competition levels, the added factors I tend to consider imperative to train for success are these:

Communication – you are required to tell your teammate what shot to play. Why, oh why, do bowlers at all levels tell their teammates the score? (“we’re two down, mate”); convey their own anxieties (“don’t hit that short bowl”; “don’t be short”); exhibit uncertainty (ask numerous questions of teammate before bowling). Whereas we as coaches need to train players to simply provide clear instruction to the player on the mat, to train them to advise on access (I call it ‘flight path’), or outcome intentions;

Game plan – the team members train to a plan so that it is an automatic application in the competition;

Leadership – use training to identify the strong people in the team; reinforce the strength of character of the individuals who form the team;

Measure Performance – the players have to know how their game performance is measured, and we train to have them meet and maintain that level of performance;

Objectives – or goals, to strive to meet. We can train the skills, and we can practice games to trial the objectives, but these targets need to be constantly in mind during the event;

Player Position – a lead in a team has to deliver and draw two bowls. Hence, that player has a major emphasis in my training on those two technical skills. Team members in other positions require various skills honed to compete successfully;

Role – prepare players in training to know, and perform, their role in the team game. Emphasise via training the need to respect and understand the role of your teammates.

Situation Awareness – something I try and introduce, with limited success, is the capacity of the players/team to observe the situation and the possible outcomes. Too often, the team (read skip) has not concentrated enough on the other tactical and mental factors that influence all the players on the rink; them and us. Use training to train and simulate for these circumstances.

Team Spirit – organize training so that it simulates an opportunity to view how well the spirit of the team looks for each individual member. Team spirit plummets when teams are losing. In my view great teams have ‘spirit’ even when they are losing, and, know how to win.

Training Intensity – the training should be of equal intensity to that expected in the game. Better than that – the game is seen by the players as less intense than their training preparation.


Lachlan Tighe, 2/7/2014

P.S….my book “Winning becomes you, in lawn bowls’ is now available. If interested in purchase, contact me direct on email l.a.tighe@bigpond.com or check the Henselite website for details of availability.
Readers may wish to refer to my Website too - www.lachlantighebowls.com


June 2014 - Missing Opportunities

May 2014 - We Don't Need Coaches

April 2014 - Five Years On

March 2014 - Winners Win with Leadership

February 2014 - Keeping Your Cool

January 2014 - Player Self Appraisal


December 2013 - Skill Intensity Program

November 2013 - Singles Serve

October 2013 - Weight Control Delivery

September 2013 - Team Cohesion, Selection

August 2013 - Knowing the Options

July 2013 - Coaching is Communication

June 2013 - Warriors

May 2013 - World Champions Reactions

April 2013 - Singles Tactics

March 2013 - Winning Pennant Finals

February 2013 - Training to win

January 2013 - ...Finally, Selectors


December 2012 - Deliberate Practice

November 2012 - Weight Control Delivery Discipline

October 2012 - Using the Second in a Fours Team

September 2012 - Pennant Team Pep Talk

August 2012 - Skill Audit

July 2012 - Skill Audit

June 2012 - Teamwork

May 2012 - One percenters

April 2012 - Trust

March 2012 - Lessons Learnt

February 2012 - Stop watch decisions workshop

January 2012 - Lessons learnt from attending the BA Hall of Fame Inaugural Award Night


October 2011 - Positivity, Self Belief, Mental Toughness

August/Septemeber 2011 - Alert

April 2011 - Sensory Awareness

March 2011 - Attitude in Teams


December 2010 - Caterpillar Program

November - Decision Options

October - Lachlan was in Dehli for the Commonwealth Games

September - Slow Green Drill

August - Decisions to Make

July - The Summit - Player Awareness

June - Pressure

May - Mastering the Yard On Shot

April - Consistency

March - Lessons Learnt 

February - Mind Games


December - Tactical Skill Decisions

November - What Bowlers Need to Succeed

October - A Winner's Menu

September - Training Skills for Thirds and Skips

August - Training Skills for Leads and Seconds

July - Attributes of Elite Bowlers

June - Goals

May - Tactical Skill

April - Pre-Delivery Routine