STARTING TO SET UP SOME SESSIONS. FINGERS CROSSED
WE DO AGILE BASKETBALL
AGILE COACHES SHOW PLAYERS HOW TO BUILD SPONTANEOUS SEQUENCES OF UNPLANNED BITE-SIZED ACTIONS
WHAT THEY DIDN’T KNOW THEY COULD DO
TO FIND WHAT IS NEXT
We are part of the LifeSkills21.club Agile Academy
AS EVERYONE GROWS THEIR CONFIDENCE IN THEIR ABILITY TO THINK ON THEIR FEET AND ADAPT AS THEY GO ... EVERYONE BECOMES MORE CURIOUS AND LESS FEARFUL OF MAKING TOO MANY MISTAKES ... LESS WORRIED ABOUT NOT BEING GOOD ENOUGH.
AS EVERYONE STARTS TO LET GO OF A NEED TO BE GOOD CONVENTIONAL PLAYERS THERE IS LESS STRESS WHEN THINGS DON’T GO AS EXPECTED. EVERYONE ADAPTS AS THEY GO.
PROBLEMS BECOME PUZZLES TO BE SOLVED BY THINKING ON OUR FEET AND ADAPTING AS WE GO.
EVERYONE EMBRACES THE JOY OF PLAYING.
EVERYONE IS WELCOME
EVERYONE CAN DISCOVER SOMETHING THEY DIDN'T KNOW THEY COULD DO
ALL AGES, ALL ABILITIES (FROM BEGINNER TO PRO), ALL WAYS OF THINKING AND LEARNING
WE JUST HAVE TO ASK OURSELVES... WHAT IS NEXT
WHERE WE PLAY
Sessions are spread across two locations
Westminster Lodge, Holywell Hill, St Albans AL1 2DL, 01727 736080
St Albans School, Abbey Mill Ln, St Albans AL3 4HB
We plan to add some netball sessions. Go to our events page to see our camps, festival and discovery trips
All ability basketball for adults. 7 till 8.45pm @ Westminster Lodge, . Pay at reception
All ability women only. 1 till 2pm, at St Albans School, pay coach £5 (Starting in Jan 2020)
Teenager development. 2 till 4pm , @ St Albans School, pay coach £5
All ability teenagers. 5 till 6pm , @ Westminster Lodge, pay reception
Our most gentle and kind beginner session for 11 and below. 5 till 6 pm @ Westminster Lodge. Pay at reception
Our most gentle and kind beginner session for 20 to 70+. 7 till 8 pm @ Westminster Lodge. Pay at reception
Under 11's all ability session. 4 till 5pm @ Westminster Lodge. Pay at reception
Under 14 all ability session. 5 till 6pm @ Westminster Lodge. Pay at reception
League level players (this is our most advanced session). Open to all players who have played in leagues and players our coaches say are ready for it. 8.30 till 10pm @ St Albans School. Pay coach £7.50, students £5. Free if not working
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
WHO ARE YOU AND WHAT IS YOUR BACKGROUND?
My name is Jon Thorne and I live in St Albans, UK. I have spent most of my 30-year career setting up and managing networks of people (sometimes 1000’s of people) to work effectively with minimal structure and oversight.
The first half of my career was with large complex corporates. The second half with home educated young people, their parents, and from that grew St Albans Lions Basketball club.
If I distil my experiences down to one thing it would be that for a network of people to work well, the majority need to be able to act in a flexible agile way. To be good at building unplanned sequences of bite-sized actions that discover what they didn't know they could do.
All my experience has been distilled into LifeSkills21.club where we help everyone to grow their life skills to live an agile life.
I am always happy to chat jon.thorne@LifeSkills21.club
HOW DOES AGILE COACHING WORK?
An Agile coach breaks the creative activity (sports, adventure, storytelling) into bite-size actions that get a bite-sized result. The Agile coach helps players to practice these bite-sized actions. The Agile coach create puzzles that players solve or not, it does matter which, by building unplanned sequences of these bite-sized actions.
Players build these sequences of unplanned actions by taking a bite-sized action that gets a result (good or bad doesn't matter which), they think on their feet and adapt to take the next bite-size action and so on.
Everyone acts off each other’s actions. Everyone thinks on their feet and adapts. Everyone shares coordinated moments of spontaneity, self-expression and collective improvisation to discover what they didn’t know they could do on their own and as a team. Everyone finds what is next.
HOW DOES AGILE COACHING WORK WITH CONVENTIONAL SPORTS COACHING?
A good conventional coach tends to be good at helping players develop the accepted technical and athletic skills for their chosen sport. In a game scenario a conventional coach tends to have a master plan that players need to be good at executing. The team tends to lose if the master plan is not good enough or if the players fail to execute to the required level. An Agile coach helps players solve the puzzle presented to them by the opposition by building their own sequences of unplanned bite-size actions. An Agile coach can take well technically and physically coached players and help them play to a higher level than their conventional coach thought possible.
WHICH IS BEST A CONVENTIONAL TEAM OR AN AGILE TEAM?
A conventional team will be better than an agile team at doing the conventional. If you want a team to go beyond the conventional and do great things you need an agile team.
A conventional team that has some of the best technical and athletic players may well play a near-perfect conventional game. But they are likely to be beaten by an agile team with similar technical and athletic players who go beyond the conventional and do great things. Just watch sport at the highest level. The best of the best are the best because they are agile.
DO I HAVE TO BE GOOD AT BASKETBALL?
It's less about the sport and more about thinking in a flexible agile way. We work with EVERYONE regardless of their ability to play sport. We work with pros to beginners. From 8 to 80 plus. All ways of thinking and learning. Everyone discovers what they didn't know they could do. Agile coaching grows everyone's confidence in their ability to think on their feet and adapt as they go. Everyone becomes more curious and less fearful of making too many mistakes. Less worried about not being good enough. Everyone is less stressed when things don't go as they expected. Everyone adapts as they go. Everyone embraces the joy of playing. Agile coaching removes any fear of not being good enough.
WHAT SKILLS IN ADDITION TO BASKETBALL WILL I LEARN?
As well as getting better at basketball players grow three skills that help build spontainoius unplanned sequences of bite-sized action.
1. To take action.
To see problems as puzzles to solve. To have the good judgement to know when to execute a planned action and when to try different ways to find a better way. To be agile as we act with only a rough idea of what will happen.
2. To get results.
To see that success and failure is temporary. What matters is discovering what is next. To be energised by disruption. See opportunity in not knowing what is going to happen. To use failure to fuel a desire to take responsibility and rise to a challenge. To grow by discovering what we didn’t know we could do. To keep asking ourselves... what is next?
3. To live well with risk.
To enjoy making decisions in the moment. Doing things at pace and with confidence. To safely think on our feet to correctly act when things go wrong. To try something that we are not sure will work when the potential good consequences out-way the potential bad consequences. To keep reflecting. To stop doing what is not working. Perfect what works for as long as it works.
IS BEING AGILE GOOD FOR MY MENTAL HEALTH?
In today's unprecedented times where all the problems seem so huge, it is easy to give up. To give up when something doesn't go to plan. To give us because we don't think anything will change. Learning how to build unplanned sequences of bite-sized actions to discover what we didn't know we could do ... gives hope. And hope is a crucial ingredient to good mental health.
CAN MY CHILD, WHO IS ON THE AUTISTIC SPECTRUM LEARN TO BE AGILE?
It is my personal experience that if we have unconventionally wired brains it maybe easier for us to become agile than it is to become conventional.
WHAT ARE THE COMMON MISTAKES OF THOSE LEARNING TO ACT IN AN AGILE WAY?
People can trap themselves in a conventional life by thinking they are not good enough to try anything different. People can avoid taking any action until they know they can do it perfectly. People can miss key stop points and make a bad situation worse.
DO YOU RUN TEAMS IN BASKETBALL ENGLAND LEAGUES?
No. We help all players, from all clubs, to be agile. To lift their performance beyond being conventional to be great versions of themselves. We run our own competitions in different formats to encourage players to be agile. To use competition to discover what they didn’t know they could do. To see winning or losing is a moment in time. What matters is what is next. If you would like us to run agile basketball sessions at your club please contact us at https://www.lifeskills21.club/
YOU SAY EVERYONE IS WELCOME. DO YOU MEAN THAT?
We are open to everyone who wants to grow the skills to build their own unplanned sequences of bite-sized actions to discover what they didn’t know they could do. We are open to everyone who wants to grow their ability to live an agile life. This means we are not open to people who are determined to implement fixed pre-planned sequences or plays. People who don't want to be agile. Seems obvious when I write it like that, but there are quite a lot of fixed mindset people implementing pre-planned tasks and fixed ways of playing and they tend to not like what we do.
HOW DO I JOIN?
PLEASE NOTE THIS MIGHT CHANGE. We may try a different approach to play our part in reducing the risk of the virus spreading while we still play.
You just turn up to a session of your choosing and we take it from there. There are no trials. And you play as much as you want and pay for each session you go to. If you are interested in learning how to be agile on other sporting platforms, through story telling, and outdoor adventures please signup at
WHAT IS YOUR INCLUSION POLICY?
Our coaches will never ask anyone to leave because they make too many mistakes. When things go wrong, we keep adapting until we find a way that works to varying degrees for everyone involved
WHAT IS YOUR HEALTH AND SAFETY POLICY?
All our coaches have to prove they manage safety of players trying things they know will not work with https://www.hosking-associates.com/ a pioneering health and safety consultancy
WHAT IS YOUR SAFEGUARDING POLICY?
Our coach has a current DBS, a current basketball first aid certificate and has completed Sport Englands safeguarding course. Our focus on getting players to think in a flexible way means our coaches encourages players, of all ages, to say “no” to them and others without any consequences, unless it impacts our health and safety policy and our inclusion policy. The coaches don't have absolute power over players.
Come along to one of the sessions and take it from there. Or contact Coach Jon to chat it all through. Everyone is very welcome. If you subscribe we will email you about all the sessions and when new events come online