Coaching Squash Nutrition is not Rocket Science

May 6, 2010

There is a lot of nutrition misinformation floating about the squash world.  It is the responsibility of coaches to encourage responsible nutrition on the part of their squash players.  What a squash coach needs is a few trusted tools and resources. I have been teaching basic nutrition to coaches and college undergraduates since 1992 – my qualifications being the academic preparation I received during my BPHE and M.A. in Physical Education – in addition to attending numerous racquet-sport specific nutrition workshops, and the reading of hundreds of nutrition articles (from trusted sources) to stay current and up-to-date.

Here are my top 3 current tools/resources:

  1. Especially with the shortening of the length of squash matches due to the move to PAR scoring, following basic rules of nutrition will satisfy the needs of 90% of squash players (vegetarians and vegans need to do a little more work).  The U.S. Mypyramid site contains most of the information a squash coach will need.
  2. Sign up for the Coaching Association of Canada’s Sport Nutrition Newsletter – the occasional e-mails are a great prompt for coaches to stay current of any changes (and there are not really that many).
  3. Concerned with maintaining your playing weight in the off-season?  Lose It! is a great free iPhone app that can help a coach track their nutritional intake and weight maintenance/loss.  The visual feedback (graphs updated daily) on goal progress are a big advantage over handwritten tools:

Application for Squash Coaches:

  1. Discourage the adoption of untested (and often expensive) nutritional fads by your athletes.
  2. Stay up to date with reputable nutritional resources.
  3. Be a good nutritional role model.

iPhone 3Gs plus Twitter for Squash Video!

December 5, 2009

The problem with having a great camcorder and computer video editing software is that it takes time to get the video ready for playback to athletes – a real problem if you are coaching multiple (usually 10 at Smith College) squash players, playing im multiple matches (total of 50 matches this upcoming weekend at the Wesleyan Round Robin in Middletown, CT.

In this video I tell how I will  how I will  use my  iPhone 3Gs and FREE Twitter apps like Twitterific or TwitVid to allow my team (10 players) to watch results of their matches at the 2009 Wesleyan round robin (so 50 video clips!).  They can watch their own clip individually, before or after a match if they bring their laptop, as Wesleyan has wireless (as we do at Smith) right by their courts – or if they have an iPhone – they can watch it anytime using the ATT 3G network.

Three easy steps to make your squash video available:

  1. Shoot (keep clips under 60 sec. for quick upload) – you can obviously record verbal feedback at same time.
  2. Open your FREE  Twitter app – I use Twitterific, Echofon or Twitvid.
  3. Write your short “Tweet”, eg. player name, game score – and hit “send”.

If my player is signed up to follow “smithsquash” on Twitter, they will receive a “Tweet” with a link to the video (as will you if you sign up to follow “smithsquash” on Twitter).  What I like about Twitvid is that I can go to their site and review all of the days match videos with my team later – they will all be in one spot identified by players name – so I just scroll down to the clip I want.  Here is a sample clip on the TwitVid site from a scrimmage against Mount Holyoke earlier this week.

Thanks Apple and Twitter!