WELCOME TO ST ALBANS LIONS KEEP-FIT BASKETBALL CLUB

Happy Basketball Player
 

ABOUT US


We develop the mental agility to adapt when things don't go our way to find a better way

We lift our performance beyond executing a plan

We lift our mental health beyond just coping with the pressure to be being perfect, task focused, individual

We learn new skills in an adapting agile culture supported by mental agility coaches

 

WELCOME TO ST ALBANS LIONS BASKETBALL CLUB

Happy Basketball Player
 
Image by Randalyn Hill

OUR ONE RULE IS "BE KIND"

“BE KIND” MEANS EVERYONE GIVES THEMSELVES AND OTHERS SPACE TO TRY DIFFERENT WAYS. IT MEANS EVERYONE TRY'S TO AVOID BLAMING THEMSELVES AND OTHERS IF DIFFERENT WAYS DON’T WORK


A LACK OF BLAME MAKES IT EASIER FOR EVERYONE TO QUICKLY ACCEPT THEY HAVE MADE A MISTAKE... MAKING IT QUICKER FOR EVERYONE TO ADAPT TO AVOID THE MISTAKE HAPPENING AGAIN. IT MEANS WE ALL ADAPT TO FIND WAYS THAT WORK TO VARYING DEGREES FOR EVERYONE INVOLVED. A “BE KIND” RULE MEANS WE ALL TALK, LISTEN AND ADAPT WITHOUT BLAME


IT MEANS IT IS AN ACT OF UNKINDNESS FOR ANY OF US TO MAKE OTHERS FEEL WRONG IF THEY INCORRECTLY FOLLOW THEIR INSTRUCTIONS. IT MEANS LEADERS AVOID TELLING OTHERS OFF FOR NOT DOING AS THEY SAY. INSTEAD, LEADERS HELP OTHERS REFLECT TO SEE THAT WHAT THEY ARE DOING IS NOT WORKING, AND SUGGEST DIFFERENT WAYS TO TRY

A “BE KIND” RULE MEANS IT IS WRONG TO SAY THERE IS ONLY ONE RIGHT WAY. ANYONE WHO TRIES TO ESTABLISH ONE RIGHT WAY, WILL EVENTUALLY BE ASKED TO LEAVE. OUR "BE KIND" RULE MEANS THERE ARE ALWAYS OTHER WAYS... WE JUST NEED TO ADAPT TO FIND THEM AND THEN SELECT A BETTER WAY

 
Friendly Hug

WELCOME TO ST ALBANS LIONS KEEP-FIT BASKETBALL CLUB

 
Image by Jeffrey F Lin

OUR "BE KIND" RULE MAKES US INCLUSIVE AND OPEN

WE HAVE ONE RULE... "BE KIND"


OUR "BE KIND" RULE MEANS EVERYONE IS GIVEN SPACE TO IMPROVE THEMSELVES WITH ONLY A ROUGH IDEA OF WHERE THEY ARE GOING AND WHAT WILL HAPPEN. IT MEANS NOBODY BLAMES THEMSELVES OR OTHERS WHEN THINGS DON’T GO AS THEY EXPECT... WE ALL GET ON WITH THE JOB OF ADAPTING TO FIND A BETTER WAY


EVERYONE ADAPTS TO WHAT OTHERS ARE DOING TO FIND DIFFERENT ADAPTATIONS, COMBINATIONS, AND VARIATIONS IN CO-ORDINATE MOMENTS OF SPONTANEITY, SELF EXPRESSION AND COLLECTIVE IMPROVISATION, CONFIDENT THAT IF REQUIRED WE CAN DO THE EXTRAORDINARY


OUR "BE KIND" RULE MEANS EVERYONE GIVES OTHERS SPACE TO DEVELOP THE GOOD JUDGEMENT ON WHEN TO REFLECT AND SPOT WHEN SOMETHING IS NOT WORKING AND STOP DOING IT. SPACE TO TRY DIFFERENT WAYS TO FIND A BETTER WAY. SPACE TO PERFECT WHAT WORKS FOR AS LONG AS IT WORKS

“Be kind” means everyone gives themselves and others space to try different ways. It means everyone try's to avoid blaming themselves and others if different ways don’t work


A lack of blame makes it easier for everyone to quickly accept they have made a mistake... making it quicker for everyone to adapt to avoid the mistake happening again. It means we all adapt to find ways that work to varying degrees for everyone involved. A “be kind” rule means we all talk, listen and adapt without blame


It means it is an act of unkindness for any of us to make others feel wrong if they incorrectly follow their instructions. It means leaders avoid telling others off for not doing as they say. Instead, leaders help others reflect to see that what they are doing is not working, and suggest different ways to try

Our “be kind” rule means it is wrong to say there is only one right way. Anyone who tries to establish one right way, will eventually be asked to leave. Our "be kind" rule means there are always other ways... we just need to adapt to find them and then select a better way

 

WE PLAY FOR FUN, FITNESS AND KINDNESS


We adapt when things don't go our way to find a better way. We are not trying to become perfected, play making, error free players. We try different ways to add to the best version of ourselves


We learn new skills in an adapting agile culture supported by mental agility coaches

We are run by LifeSkills21.club who implement adapting agile cultures

Happy Basketball Player
 
Image by Jeffrey F Lin





WE PLAY IN AN ADAPTING AGILE CULTURE

WE LEARN NEW SKILLS BY ADAPTING WHEN THINGS DON'T GO OUR WAY TO FIND A BETTER WAY

We are run by LifeSkills21.club who implement adapting agile cultures

 

WELCOME TO ST ALBANS LIONS COMMUNITY KEEP-FIT BASKETBALL CLUB

 
Image by paul wallez

WE PLAY IN AN ADAPTING AGILE CULTURE

WHILE PLAYING IN A “GET IT RIGHT” CULTURE GIVES US COMFORT THAT WE ARE DOING THE RIGHT THING BY REMOVING THE POSSIBILITY THAT THERE ARE OTHER WAYS... IT ALSO LIMITS OUR OPTIONS TO GET BETTER. WE LIFT OUR POTENTIAL BEYOND DOING THE RIGHT THING CORRECTLY BY LEARNING NEW SKILLS IN AN ADAPTING AGILE CULTURE SUPPORTED BY A MENTAL AGILITY COACH

 
Image by paul wallez

IF OUR ONLY GOAL IS GETTING THINGS RIGHT, WE REMOVE THE POSSIBILITY OF THERE BEING OTHER WAYS. WE LIMIT OUR OWN POTENTIAL TO A PERFECTED, TASK FOCUSSED INDIVIDUAL WHO FEARS, MISTAKES AND ONLY DOES WHAT THEY KNOW WORKS


WE WANT TO "REWILD" COMMUNITY SPORT BY RUNNING SESSIONS WHERE PLAYERS OF ALL ABILITIES TRY THINGS THAT THEY DON’T KNOW WILL WORK. ACT WITHOUT HAVING ALL THE SOLUTIONS. ADAPT WHEN THINGS DON’T GO THEIR WAY TO FIND A BETTER WAY


WHAT WILL EMERGE?


WE DON’T KNOW


BUT WE WILL LIFT OUR POTENTIAL BEYOND TELLING EACH OTHER OFF FOR MISTAKES TO PEOPLE WHO ADAPT TO FIND SUSTAINABLE WAYS TO LIVE TOGETHER ON OUR AMAZING PLANET

 

HOW DOES A MENTAL AGILITY COACH IMPACT THE MENTAL HEALTH OF PLAYERS?

By helping players see there are always other ways ... which helps them see they can do more than just cope

 

HOW DOES A MENTAL AGILITY COACH LIFT PERFORMANCE?

By helping the team move beyond their ability to execute a plan error free

 
Image by paul wallez

WE ARE AN ESCAPE FROM A “GET IT RIGHT” CULTURE WHERE WE ONLY ACT WHEN WE HAVE ALL THE SOLUTIONS. ONLY ACT WHEN WE KNOW IT WILL WORK


WE DEVELOP NEW SKILLS IN AN ADAPTING AGILE CULTURE


OUR MENTAL AGILITY COACHES COACH EVERYONE TO SPEND LESS TIME THINKING ABOUT WHEN TO ACT AND MORE TIME ACTING WITHOUT KNOWING IF IT WILL WORK AND THEN ADAPTING TO FIND A BETTER WAY


WHAT WILL EMERGE?


WE DON’T KNOW


BUT WE WILL LIFT OUR POTENTIAL BEYOND TELLING EACH OTHER OFF FOR MISTAKES TO PEOPLE WHO ADAPT TO FIND SUSTAINABLE WAYS TO LIVE TOGETHER ON OUR AMAZING PLANET

 
Image by Tim Mossholder

OUR "BE KIND" RULE

TO HAVE A RIGHT WAY OF THERE ALWAYS BEING OTHER WAYS


TO GIVE OURSELVES AND OTHERS SPACE TO IMPROVE WITH ONLY A ROUGH IDEA OF WHERE THEY ARE GOING AND WHAT WILL HAPPEN

TO GIVE OURSELVES AND OTHERS SPACE TO FIND OTHER WAYS BY TRYING SOMETHING THAT WE DON'T KNOW WILL WORK AND WHEN IT DOESN'T WORK ADAPT TO FIND A BETTER WAY

TO ADAPT TO FIND DIFFERENT ADAPTATIONS, COMBINATIONS, AND VARIATIONS IN CO-ORDINATE MOMENTS OF SPONTANEITY, SELF EXPRESSION AND COLLECTIVE IMPROVISATION TO DO SOMETHING EXTRAORDINARY


TO GIVE OURSELVES AND OTHERS SPACE TO DEVELOP THE GOOD JUDGEMENT ON WHEN TO REFLECT AND SPOT WHEN SOMETHING IS NOT WORKING AND STOP DOING IT. SPACE TO TRY DIFFERENT WAYS TO FIND A BETTER WAY. SPACE TO PERFECT WHAT WORKS FOR AS LONG AS IT WORKS

COME PLAY WITH US

 
Image by Dan Gold

WE PLAY FOR FUN, FITNESS AND KINDNESS

 
Image by Markus Spiske

WE PLAY KIND


KIND ENOUGH TO GIVE OURSELVES AND OTHERS SPACE TO IMPROVE WITH ONLY A ROUGH IDEA OF WHERE WE ARE GOING AND WHAT WILL HAPPEN

KIND ENOUGH TO GIVE OURSELVES AND OTHERS SPACE TO FIND OTHER WAYS BY TRYING SOMETHING THAT WE DON'T KNOW WILL WORK AND WHEN IT DOESN'T WORK ADAPT TO FIND A BETTER WAY

TO ADAPT TO FIND DIFFERENT ADAPTATIONS, COMBINATIONS, AND VARIATIONS IN CO-ORDINATE MOMENTS OF SPONTANEITY, SELF EXPRESSION AND COLLECTIVE IMPROVISATION TO DO SOMETHING EXTRAORDINARY


KIND ENOUGH TO GIVE OURSELVES AND OTHERS SPACE TO DEVELOP THE GOOD JUDGEMENT ON WHEN TO REFLECT AND SPOT WHEN SOMETHING IS NOT WORKING AND STOP DOING IT. SPACE TO TRY DIFFERENT WAYS TO FIND A BETTER WAY. SPACE TO PERFECT WHAT WORKS FOR AS LONG AS IT WORKS

WHICH MEANS OUR RIGHT WAY IS THAT THERE ARE ALWAYS OTHER WAYS... AND THOSE OTHER WAYS CAN BE DIFFERENT FOR EACH OF US

 
Image by Tim Mossholder



WE PLAY SMART


SMART ENOUGH TO SPOT WHEN A NEED TO GET IT "RIGHT" STOPS US TRYING DIFFERENT WAYS TO FIND A BETTER WAY


SMART ENOUGH TO DRAW MOTIVATION FROM KNOWING THAT NOBODY KNOWS THE RIGHT WAY. THERE ARE ALWAYS OTHER WAYS


SMART ENOUGH TO FIND OTHER WAYS BY TRYING SOMETHING THAT WE DON’T KNOW WILL WORK AND WHEN IT DOESN’T WORK ADAPT TO FIND A BETTER WAY

 

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A TRADITIONAL COACH AND A MENTAL AGILITY COACH?

A basketball playing mental agility helps players learn by adapting to their own and their teammates strengths and weaknesses. They encourage learning by failure. And don't expect players to always follow their instructions or execute their plans

 

WE ARE RUN BY LIFESKILLS21.CLUB

 
Image by paul wallez

WE PLAY FOR FUN, FITNESS AND KINDNESS


ALL ABILITIES, ALL AGES, ALL WAYS OF THINKING AND LEARNING ARE WELCOME TO COME ALONG WHENEVER THEY WANT AND AS MUCH AS THEY WANT

EVERYONE DISCOVERS THINGS THEY DIDN'T KNOW THEY COULD DO


BY TRYING THINGS THEY ARE NOT SURE WILL WORK AND WHEN THEY DON'T WORK, ADAPT TO FIND A BETTER WAY

WE HAVE ONE RULE. BE KIND. WE LET EACH OTHER MAKE MISTAKES

WE ALL HAVE DIFFERENT STRENGTHS AND WEAKNESSES. EVERYONE DEVELOPS THEIR OWN WAYS TO GROW AS PLAYERS

Top level players tend to grow their ability to see games as puzzles that they solve by finding different adaptations, combinations, and variations in coordinate moments of spontaneity, self expression and collective improvisation with team mates. Younger and older players tend to adapt to their changing bodies to keep growing themselves as basketball players. Everyone has fun as they enjoy discovering things they didn't know they could do.

Our coaches are all certified by Hosking Associates (hosking-associates.com), a leading health and safety practice, to have the good judgement to coach others to safely try ways they don't know will work.

 
Image by paul wallez

WE PLAY FOR FUN, FITNESS AND KINDNESS


ALL ABILITIES, ALL AGES, ALL WAYS OF THINKING AND LEARNING ARE WELCOME TO COME ALONG WHENEVER THEY WANT AND AS MUCH AS THEY WANT

WE DON'T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT MAKING MISTAKES


OUR COACHES ENCOURAGE US TO TRY THINGS WE ARE NOT SURE WILL WORK

TO DISCOVER WHAT WE DIDN'T KNOW WE COULD DO

TO PRACTICE WHAT WE DISCOVER AND GET BACK TO TRYING THINGS WE ARE NOT SURE WILL WORK

WE GROW OURSELVES AS BASKETBALL PLAYERS

Top level players tend to grow their ability to see games as puzzles that they solve by finding different adaptations, combinations, and variations in coordinated moments of spontaneity, self expression and collective improvisation with team mates. Younger and older players tend to adapt to their changing bodies to keep growing themselves as basketball players. Everyone has fun as they enjoy discovering things they didn't know they could do.

Our coaches are all certified by Hosking Associates (hosking-associates.com), a leading health and safety practice, to have the good judgement to coach others to safely try ways they don't know will work.

 

OUR SESSIONS ARE OPEN TO ALL PLAYERS FROM ALL CLUBS

If players only practice to reduce mistakes they can develop a tendency to only do what they know they can do perfectly and when things don't go perfectly to plan they can often give up. They can become "fragile perfect".

By club players attending our sessions as well as their club sessions they get more play time and avoid becoming "fragile perfect" by growing their ability to think in a flexible way. They play to reduce mistakes and play where mistakes help players discover what they didn't know they could do.

High School Basketball Team
 

OUR SESSIONS ARE OPEN TO EVERYONE

 
Custom Jersey Design

DO YOU ENTER LEAGUE TEAMS?

Our goal is to help all players think in a flexible way to enjoy unplanned, unpredictable jumps in performance. We provide a playing environment that encourages players to try things they know will not work and when they don't work adapt to find a better way and see where it takes them. We have found that if we have a goal to win a league, players and coaches naturally focus on doing what works to win. They tend not to try ways they know will not work to find jumps in performance. So we have stopped entering leagues and instead provide a different playing environment for players from all clubs and no clubs to find jumps in performance that once perfected are used to help their club teams win their leagues. All players from other clubs are welcome. All players from no clubs are welcome. All should experience jumps in performance as they try things they know don't work for them and when they don’t work they adapt to find a better way.

WHAT IS YOUR INCLUSION POLICY?

Our coaches will never ask anyone to leave because they make too many mistakes. We are not based on there being a "right" way to play basketball. Or a "right" way to behave or act. We ask everyone to be kind to themselves and others. 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 mental agility also means our coach encourages players, of all ages, to always say “no” to him and others without any consequences, unless it impacts our health and safety policy and our inclusion policy.

HOW DO YOU HELP WITH MENTAL HEALTH?

As well as the benefits of keeping fit we remove the stress that many feel from not being able to play basketball in the correct way. We remove the fear of failing by not having a right way to play. We encourage all players to find ways to improve by trying things they know will not work and when they don't work adapt to find a better way and we see where it takes us. Players become more flexible thinkers by playing smart, kind and safe.

 

WE REBEL AGAINST THE CONVENTION

Basketball Player in Action

THE CONVENTION IS TO PRACTICE TO REDUCE MISTAKES

The convention is for players to get into the best team by demonstrating they can execute a coaches drills, sequences, routines with as few mistakes as possible. 

The convention is for a team to compete by disrupting the other teams way of playing while being as error free as possible as they execute their own teams plans.

It is common that when a player makes too many mistakes they often blame and can give up thinking they are not good enough.

Happy Basketball Player

WE PLAY TO DISCOVER WHAT WE DIDN'T KNOW WE COULD DO

We worry less about mistakes as we try things we are not sure will work to discover what we didn't know we could do.


We solve the puzzle of the moment by taking an action, getting a result (good or bad), thinking on their feet and using the result to adapt to find another action. We build unplanned sequences of actions, results, adaptations for each specific situation they face. 

The fundamental actions of basketball are cross over, drive, step back, shot, pass, movement with and without the ball. There are many, many ways any of taking these actions in any sequence. This creativity is the joy of basketball.

We play in agile teams. One agile player takes an action which triggers other agile players to take their own action. All agile players see the result of their actions, think on their feet, adapt and take another action. Agile players are taking actions off each other as they collectively solve the puzzle of the moment.

We share an experience of finding different adaptations, combinations, and variations in coordinated moments of spontaneity, self expression and collective improvisation to discover what they didn’t know they could do together.    


An agile team of similar ability tends to beat a conventional team. The agile team doesn’t have set plays for the conventional team to disrupt. The agile team adapts to disrupt the set plays of the conventional team.

 

OUR COACHES

COACH JON

Jon has spent his life rebelling against the idea that there should be clear pathways to sporting success. As a player he was often disciplined for not doing what the coach told him to do, even when it worked and the team won. Jon's children inspired him to develop a non conventional way to coach sport that led to Lions basketball club and LifeSkills21.club

COACH JOSH

It was Josh's love of basketball and his different way of thinking and learning that excluded him from conventional coaching that inspired Jon. Josh is a crucial part of learning how to coach sport to lift players ability to discover what they didn't know they could do.

COACH ARRAN

Arran is also Jon's son. Arran has inspired many by using basketball to grow from an overweight gamer who would rarely leave his room to someone who feels alive by discovering things he didn’t know he could do. He is respected as a great basketball player and is still great at playing computer games. Arran is a major inspiration to growing Lions basketball club and LifeSkills21.club

 
Basketball Game

WE USE BASKETBALL TO HELP PLAYERS BE AGILE

We use basketball to coach players act with only a rough idea of what will happen, thinking on their feet, adapting as they go. 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 manage risk as they try things they are not sure will work and when they don’t work, adapt to find a better way. 

To see success and failure is temporary. What matters is discovering what is next. To 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 they didn’t know they could do.

To enjoy making decisions in the moment. Doing things at pace and with confidence. To safely think on their feet to correctly act when things go wrong. To try something that they 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. Perfecting what works for as long as it works. 

 
Basketball Player

WE DO AGILE BASKETBALL

CONVENTIONAL BASKETBALL COACHING HELPS THE BEST PLAYERS TO BE GOOD CONVENTIONAL PLAYERS.


AGILE COACHING HELPS EVERYONE TO BE A GREAT VERSION OF THEMSELVES.


Agile basketball is where agile coaches coach players to take bite-sized actions that get a result... good or bad it doesn’t matter which. Each time a player gets a result, they are coached to think on their feet, adapt and take the next bite-sized action. Players build spontaneous sequences of unplanned bite-sized actions and discover what they didn’t know they could do.

Don't settle for a conventional version of yourself. Be a great version of yourself.

 
Image by paul wallez

WE PLAY FOR FUN, FITNESS AND KINDNESS


THERE IS NO NEED TO WORRY ABOUT NOT BEING GOOD ENOUGH

IT'S LESS ABOUT CONVENTIONAL TECHNICAL SKILLS AND MORE ABOUT DEVELOP THE SKILLS TO ACT IN A FLEXIBLE AGILE WAY

 

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.


They are


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 https://www.lifeskills21.club/rebel-action

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.

 
Basketball Player

WE DO AGILE BASKETBALL


OUR FOCUS ON MENTAL AGILITY MEANS WE ARE OPEN TO EVERYONE REGARDLESS OF TECHNICAL AND ATHLETIC ABILITIES 

AGILE COACHES HELP PLAYERS BUILD UNPLANNED SEQUENCES OF BITE-SIZED ACTIONS

TO 

DISCOVER

WHAT THEY DIDN’T KNOW THEY COULD DO

TO FIND THEIR "WHAT IS NEXT"

The change of emphasis from the “technical and athletic” to “agile thinking" often re-motivates players. It re-motivates players who have reached their technical and athletic potential. It re-motivates players whose technical and athletic potential is reducing as they grow older. It re-motivates those who gave up coached sports because they lack technical and athletic abilities. Agile coaching can also help prepare gifted young players for a long and successful professional career. Everyone can discover what they didn’t know they could do. Everyone can find their "what is next".

We are part of the LifeSkills21.club Agile Academy

 
Image by Gelani Banks

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.

 
Basketball Player

WELCOME TO
ST ALBANS LIONS AGILE ACADEMY


OUR FOCUS ON MENTAL AGILITY MEANS WE ARE OPEN TO EVERYONE REGARDLESS OF TECHNICAL AND ATHLETIC ABILITIES 

An Agile coach breaks various sports and physical activities into bite-size actions that get a bite-sized result. They then coach players to practice these bite-sized actions to build their own unplanned sequences of bite-sized actions... on their own and in agile teams. Players discover what they didn't know they could do and find their "what is next".


The change of emphasis from the “technical and athletic” to “agile thinking" often re-motivates players. It re-motivates players who have reached their technical and athletic potential. It re-motivates players whose technical and athletic potential is reducing as they grow older. It re-motivates those who gave up coached sports because they lack technical and athletic abilities. Agile coaching can also help prepare gifted young players for a long and successful professional career. Everyone can discover what they didn’t know they could do. Everyone can find their "what is next".

We are part of the LifeSkills21.club Agile Academy

 
Slamdunk

WE ARE PART OF SOME ANSWERS TO SOME FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Feel free to contact us jon.thorne@LifeSkills21.club

 

WHAT IS AGILE COACHING?

An Agile coach breaks the sport and physical activities into bite-size actions that get a bite-sized result. An Agile coach helps players practice these bite-sized actions individually and to build unplanned sequences of these bite-sized actions. On their own and in agile teams.

WHAT KIND OF TRAINING DO THE AGILE COACHES HAVE?

All our agile coaches are trained and support by LifeSkills21.club. They are our head office, if you like. You can find out alot more about our approach at their website.  

HOW DOES AGILE COACHING ADD VALUE TO CONVENTIONAL SPORTS COACHING?

The change of emphasis from the “technical and athletic” to “agile thinking" often re-motivates players. It re-motivates players who have reached their technical and athletic potential. It re-motivates players whose technical and athletic potential is reducing as they grow older. It re-motivates those who gave up coached sports because they lack technical and athletic abilities. Agile coaching can also help prepare gifted young players for a long and successful professional career. Everyone can discover what they didn’t know they could do. Everyone can find their "what is next".

WHAT SKILLS DO PLAYERS DEVELOP?

An Agile coach will use sports and other physical activities to help everyone grow three life skills we tend to need to live an agile life...


1. To take action.

To have the good judgment to know when to do as planned and when to be agile. To be agile by building unplanned sequences of bite-sized actions. To take a bite-sized action that gets a result, good or bad doesn’t matter which, then think on our feet, adapt, and take the next bite-sized action. To work in agile teams by adapting our bite-sized actions to add value to our teammates. To build a movement for change by copying the bite-sized actions of others.

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 always ask 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.

ARE PROFESSIONAL SPORTS PLAYERS AGILE?

Many sports rely on a performance pathway to draw the most technically and athletically gifted into the elite level. This process relies on the best winning games by using their superior technically and athletically gifts.

Once at the elite professional level, everyone has similar technical and physical skills. Few can win with technical and physical superiority alone. If they can, it's not for long before the other pro's adapt to stop them. At the elite level successful players learn to think in an agile way to win when they don't have technical and athletic superiority.

Players who don't make it to the elite level can often get stuck in the technical and athletic superiority mindset. Meaning they often give up when they meet superior players or when they have a bad day... because they lack the mental agility to adapt to think their way to win when they don't have superior technical and athletic ability.

@ the Agile Academy everyone is coached to be agile thinkers just like the pro's... without necessarily having the technical and athletic abilities of the pro's. We can't all be professional sports players but we can all live an agile life.

BUT THE BEST OF THE BEST WANT TO WIN, RIGHT?

Yep. They also know that to have long successful careers takes more than technical and athletic superiority. So, they use competition as a way to help them find their “what is next”. To discover what they didn’t know they could do. They use competition to keep growing. They know that this growth makes it more likely to win more than they lose over a longer period of time. The best of the best tend to be the best because they see winning and losing as moments in time. They use their sport IQ to find what they need to do next to improve and this can't always be technical and athletic improvements. @ Agile Academy everyone can apply the same approach to living their own lives.

HOW DO YOU LINK TO COMPETITIVE SPORTS CLUBS?

Clubs send their players to us. We help their players grow their potential beyond their technical and athletic abilities. We try to minimise the time away from normal club training.

CAN ANYONE JOIN YOUR AGILE ACADEMY?

Yes. Diversity of age and ability makes it easier for everyone to grow their ability to act in a flexible agile way.

DO I HAVE TO BE ATHLETIC AND PHYSICALLY ABLE?

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. Regardless of their athletic and physically ability. 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.

DOES AN AGILE LIFE HELP WITH MENTAL HEALTH?

Learning how to build unplanned sequences of bite-sized actions to discover what we didn't know we could do ... gives hope. Believing we can find our “what is next” ... gives hope. 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 is easier for us to become agile than it is to become conventional.

Image by Mathieu Chassara

ST ALBANS LIONS AGILITY CLUB

(FORMALLY ST ALBANS LIONS BASKETBALL CLUB)

Our Agile coaches help players to be agile thinkers like elite sports players without necessarily having the technical and athletic abilities of a professional.

We use sports like basketball and netball to coach players to use their mental agility to solve puzzles. To think their way to discovering what they didn’t know they could do. To think their way to find their own “what is next”. To find ways to push the edges of what they thought they could do... regardless of their technical and athletic abilities

 
Happy Basketball Player

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


EVERYONE

PLAYERS JUST NEED TO ASK THEMSELVES... "WHAT IS NEXT"

 
Image by Benmar Schmidhuber

WHEN WE

FOLLOW

A PLAN

FOR

TOO

LONG


TO THE EXCLUSION OF ALL ELSE ...

WE CAN BECOME ANTI-AGILE

WE GET STRESSED WHEN THINGS DON'T GO TO PLAN. WE ONLY DO WHAT WE KNOW WE CAN DO. WHEN THINGS DON'T WORK, WE TRY HARDER TO MAKE WHAT IS NOT WORKING... WORK. WE BECOME ANXIOUS ABOUT NOT BEING GOOD ENOUGH. SCARED OF GETTING THINGS WRONG. ANGRY WITH THOSE WHO STOP US FROM DELIVERING A PLAN.  THIS IS BAD FOR OUR HEALTH, OUR PERFORMANCE, AND OUR LOVED ONES.

 
Image by Fuu J

THE PURPOSE OF LIFE IS LIFE. TO LIVE. TO BE ALIVE

TO PLAN TO FIND WHAT IS NEXT


TO FIND WHAT IS NEXT

 
Image by Clay Banks

THE 
BENEFITS
OF
BEING
AGILE

Being agile keeps us performing.
Keeps us searching for what is next. 
It keeps us mentally healthy

 
Image by Maxime Bhm

BE CURIOUS


BE GOOD TO YOURSELF AND YOUR LOVED ONES

PERFORM TO A LEVEL YOU NEVER THOUGHT WAS POSSIBLE


BE LESS STRESSED WHEN THINGS DON'T GO TO PLAN

LESS ANXIOUS ABOUT NOT BEING GOOD ENOUGH

WORRY LESS ABOUT GETTING THINGS WRONG

BE KINDER TO THOSE WHO STOP YOU DELIVERING A PLAN

BE AGILE

 
Image by Mohamed Nohassi

BEING
MENTALLY
ACTIVE

STOPS US FROM FOCUSING ON A PLAN TO THE EXCLUSION OF ALL ELSE... THAT'S THE EXCLUSION OUR OWN NEEDS, THE NEEDS OF OUR LOVED ONES, AND THE NEEDS OF OTHERS.

IT STOPS US LIMITING OUR OWN DEVELOPMENT BY ALWAYS DOING WHAT WE KNOW WE CAN DO. IT STOPS US FROM LOWERING OUR PERFORMANCE BY TRYING HARDER TO DO SOMETHING THAT IS NOT WORKING.

IT STOPS US FROM GETTING OVERLY STRESSED AND ANXIOUS WHEN THINGS GO WRONG. FROM BEING OVERLY ANGRY AND UNKIND TO THOSE WE THINK ARE STOPPING US FROM DELIVERING WHAT WE PLANNED.

WE SEARCHING FOR WHAT IS NEXT. NEW WAYS TO PERFORM. THINGS WE DIDN’T KNOW WE COULD DO. OPEN TO BEING MORE.

IT KEEP HOPE JOY AND LAUGHTER IN OUR LIVES.

 
Image by Mohamed Nohassi

BEING
AGILE
KEEPS
US
MENTALLY
ACTIVE

BEING AGILE STOPS US FROM FOCUSING ON A PLAN TO THE EXCLUSION OF ALL ELSE... THAT'S THE EXCLUSION OUR OWN NEEDS, THE NEEDS OF OUR LOVED ONES, AND THE NEEDS OF OTHERS.


BEING AGILE STOPS US FROM LIMITING OUR OWN DEVELOPMENT BY ALWAYS DOING WHAT WE KNOW WE CAN DO. IT STOPS US FROM LOWERING OUR PERFORMANCE BY TRYING HARDER TO DO SOMETHING THAT IS NOT WORKING.


BEING AGILE STOPS US FROM GETTING OVERLY STRESSED AND ANXIOUS WHEN THINGS GO WRONG. FROM BEING OVERLY ANGRY AND UNKIND TO THOSE WE THINK ARE STOPPING US FROM DELIVERING WHAT WE PLANNED.

BEING AGILE KEEPS US MENTALLY ACTIVE. SEARCHING FOR WHAT IS NEXT. NEW WAYS TO PERFORM. THINGS WE DIDN’T KNOW WE COULD DO. OPEN TO BEING MORE.


BEING AGILE BRINGS HOPE JOY AND LAUGHTER INTO OUR ALIVES.

 
Triatholon Swim

PLAYING SPORT AND PHYSICAL ACTIVITIES WITH OUR AGILE COACHES

HELPS EVERYONE FIND WHAT IS NEXT BY BUILDING THEIR OWN UNPLANNED SEQUENCES OF

PLANNED

BITE-SIZED ACTIONS

EVERYONE CAN PUSH THEIR BOUNDARIES OF WHAT THEY THOUGHT WAS POSSIBLE  

EVERYONE CAN DISCOVER WHAT THEY DIDN'T KNOW THEY COULD DO

EVERYONE CAN PERFORM TO A LEVEL THEY NEVER THOUGHT POSSIBLE BY FINDING “WHAT IS NEXT”

 
Basketball Players

WE ARE AGILE AND

MENTALLY ACTIVE 

JOIN US ON A JOURNEY WHERE THE ROUTE IS UNCERTAIN

KEEP FINDING WHAT IS NEXT

WE KEEP PHYSICALLY ACTIVE TO MAINTAIN OUR PHYSICAL HEALTH.

WE KEEP MENTALLY ACTIVE TO MAINTAIN OUR MENTAL HEALTH.


A GOOD WAY TO STAY MENTALLY ACTIVE IS TO GO ON A SHARED JOURNEY WHERE THE ROUTE IS UNCERTAIN. THE UNCERTAINTY OF A ROUTE KEEPS US THINKING AND ADAPTING AS WE MOVE TOWARDS A SHARED DESTINATION.

Our events provide a shared destination where the route is uncertain. Our Agile coaches help everyone to practice bite-sized actions required to move towards the chosen destination. They set puzzles to trigger everyone to build their own unplanned sequences of the planned bite-sized actions. Everyone finds their own way to move closer to the shared destination.
Everyone becomes more agile. More mentally active. More able to find what is next.

 
Basketball Players

BE AGILE, MENTALLY ACTIVE, KEEP FINDING WHAT IS NEXT

 
Image by Markus Spiske

BEING AGILE KEEPS US PERFORMING

KEEPS US SEARCHING FOR WHAT IS NEXT

IT KEEPS US MENTALLY ACTIVE

 
Image by Austin Neill

WE SHARE A JOURNEY TOWARDS A DESTINATION WHERE
THE ROUTE
IS UNCERTAIN

 
Image by Patrick Fore

WE
FIND
WHAT
IS NEXT

WE AVOID FOCUSING ON A PLAN TO THE EXCLUSION OF ALL ELSE... THAT'S THE EXCLUSION OUR OWN NEEDS, THE NEEDS OF OUR LOVED ONES, AND THE NEEDS OF OTHERS.

WE AVOID LIMITING OUR OWN DEVELOPMENT BY ALWAYS DOING WHAT WE KNOW WE CAN DO. WE AVOID LOWERING OUR PERFORMANCE BY TRYING HARDER TO DO SOMETHING THAT IS NOT WORKING.

WE AVOID GETTING OVERLY STRESSED AND ANXIOUS WHEN THINGS GO WRONG. FROM BEING OVERLY ANGRY AND UNKIND TO THOSE WE THINK ARE STOPPING US FROM DELIVERING WHAT WE PLANNED.

WE STAY MENTALLY ACTIVE AND AGILE AS WE KEEP SEARCHING FOR WHAT IS NEXT. NEW WAYS TO PERFORM. THINGS WE DIDN’T KNOW WE COULD DO. OPEN TO BEING MORE.

WE BRING HOPE JOY AND LAUGHTER INTO OUR LIVES.

 
Women Playing Volleyball

OUR AGILE COACHES

HELP

EVERYONE

TO BE AGILE AND MENTALLY ACTIVE

LIKE

MANY

ELITE SPORTS PROFESSIONALS

WITHOUT

NECESSARILY HAVING THE TECHNICAL AND ATHLETIC ABILITIES OF A PROFESSIONAL

 
Basketball Players

BEING AGILE KEEPS US PERFORMING


KEEPS US MENTALLY ACTIVE


KEEPS US SEARCHING FOR WHAT IS NEXT

 
Image by Ahmad Odeh

THE PURPOSE OF THE DANCE IS NOT TO END


IF THAT WAS TRUE WE WOULD ONLY WATCH THE CLOSING FEW SECONDS


THE PURPOSE OF THE DANCE IS THE DANCE

 
Image by lucas law

WE GIVE EVERYONE AN OPPORTUNITY TO DANCE

TO LIVE

TO BE AGILE THINKERS


MENTALLY ACTIVE


TO ADAPT, TO THINK IN A FLEXIBLE WAY

TO SEE THAT SUCCESS AND FAILURE IS TEMPORARY. WHAT MATTERS IS DISCOVERING WHAT IS NEXT

 
Image by Harley-Davidson

BE AGILE

STAY MENTALLY ACTIVE 

GO ON A JOURNEY WHERE THE ROUTE IS UNCERTAIN

FIND WHAT IS NEXT

BOOK ON A SESSION

WE USE MANY DIFFERENT SPORTS AND CREATIVE ACTIVITIES TO CREATE DESTINATIONS WHERE THE ROUTE IS UNCERTAIN. EVERYONE IS WELCOME. ALL AGES. FROM BEGINNERS TO PRO'S. ALL WAYS OF THINKING AND LEARNING.

Please note some sessions are streamed, by ability and age. If there isn't a session for you... contact us and we will try and create one

 
Swimmer

THE BEST OF THE BEST MAINTAIN HIGH STANDARDS

AND STAY MENTALLY ACTIVE AND AGILE TO FIND WHAT IS NEXT

WE TEND TO ACHIEVE HIGH STANDARDS BY MAKING EVERYTHING CONTROLLABLE. REPEATABLE. CONSISTENT. TO PRACTICE TO MAKE DELIVERY SUBCONSCIOUS. WITHOUT THINKING. IT’S ABOUT AVOIDING THE UNKNOWN BY PREPARING FOR EVERY EVENTUALITY.

WE TEND TO BECOME MENTALLY ACTIVE WHEN DOING THINGS WITH ELEMENTS OF UNKNOWN IN THEM. THE UNKNOWN MAKES US THINK AND ADAPT.


TOO MUCH TIME PRACTICING TO ACHIEVE HIGH STANDARDS CAN LOWER MENTAL ACTIVITY TO THE POINT WHERE WE ARE FULL OF UNCERTAINTY AND DOUBT WHEN THINGS DON’T GO TO PLAN. WE CAN FREEZE AT A TIME WE NEED TO THINK THE MOST. TO ADAPT TO FIND WHAT IS NEXT.

 
Swimmer

WHEN WE ALWAYS DO WHAT IS KNOWN

WHEN WE ALWAYS DO AS INSTRUCTED 

IT DOESN'T TAKE MUCH THOUGHT TO DO WHAT IS  KNOWN

 
Basketball Game

HOW IT WORKS

All our events are set up to trigger players to think in an agile way. To be mentally active to find what is next.

We tend to become mentally active when doing things with elements of the unknown in them. The unknown makes us think and adapt.

All our events have a clear destination and an unclear route to get there.


An agile coach will coach players to play using the relevant bite-sized actions. Bite-sized actions have a degree of unknown. They can be stopped the second a previously unknown risk appears that is high enough to not merit the action carrying on. Players then move towards their shared destination by build their own unplanned sequences of the planned bite-sized actions.

It doesn't always work.


Being agile and mentally active is about seeing success and failure as 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 they didn’t know they could do. To always ask themselves... what is next?

It's also about enjoyment and laughter.

Simply scroll down and signup to one of our events / sessions

 
Image by Jeffrey F Lin

"I NEVER WORRY ABOUT ACTION. BUT ONLY INACTION"

QUOTE IS WINSTON CHURCHILL

OUR EVENTS HELP EVERYONE STAY MENTALLY ACTIVE, AGILE AND LOOKING FOR WHAT IS NEXT


ANY FEAR OF NOT MAKING A MOVE IN CASE IT IS WRONG... DISSOLVES

ANY PANIC ABOUT NOT KNOWING WHAT TO DO ... DISSOLVE.


WE THINK, WE ADAPT, WE FIND WHAT IS NEXT.


For those seeking performance... Sports coaches tend to coach habits to be subconscious. Agile coaches coach bite-sized actions to promote agile thinking. Combined they create the highest performing teams where players perfectly execute good habits in a subconscious way AND think to adapt to find what is next. These teams win when they are playing badly. They win when they have no right to win. They find a way. The top NBA teams do this. The best example is the New Zealand rugby team. 

“If you’re going through hell, keep going.” - Winston Churchill

 
Image by Jeffrey F Lin

NEXT GENERATION SPORTS PERFORMANCE PROGRAMMES

We are Agile Sports Coaches

The last 10+ years of sports performance has been based around coaches seeking marginal gains to better implement a “PLAN A”


I don’t think that is the future. Asking athletes to fit into a “PLAN A” to the exclusion of all else is not good for them. It may even harm them.


For me, the future is having a looser “plan a” with agile adapting athletes who... when “plan a” stops working as well as desired ... step off plan and navigate their way through an unclear route to find what is next.


This is kinder to athletes. They don’t have to exclude all other aspects of their lives to fit into a “PLAN A”. Athletes also achieve higher levels of performance by seeking to find the best version of themselves.


It is relativity easy to convert an old “PLAN A” sports performance programme to a new agile sports performance programme. All that needs to happen is for current sports coaches to loosen their control on their “plan a” and work alongside agile sports coaches.

 
Image by Markus Spiske

MY STORY

I am hoping I can help more of us escape this perfect trap where we are told we have to seek marginal gains to better implement a fixed "PLAN A" to the exclusion of all else. We don't. And when we don't we can achieve far higher levels of performance by navigating unclear routes to find what is next.


I believe that if a sports head coach manages to create a performance programme based on hunting marginal gains to deliver a fix "PLAN A" to the exclusion of all else ... the players and the organisation are in trouble.


Why?


When they win, the head coach takes the credit for having a great "PLAN A".

When they lose, the head coach can say they need better athletes to implement their "PLAN A". It’s the athlete's fault. The head coach is, in effect, unaccountable.


The head coach is untouchable until a few athletes find the courage and the skill to stand up to their head coach in a way that makes it clear the head coach is knowingly harming athletes. We have seen many examples of this in the press where various head coaches have been sacked for bullying and worse.


If an athlete suggests alternative ways to the head coaches "PLAN A" the head coach can drop them.


If an athlete refuses to commit to "PLAN A", a head coach can drop them saying the athlete is not committed. A loser even.


If an athlete is harmed by "PLAN A", the head coach can stick to "PLAN A" knowing it will harm the athlete. If the athlete keeps trying to fit into "PLAN A", the head coach can think the athlete is choosing to harm themselves. It’s the athlete's fault for not being mentally strong enough to do "PLAN A". The athlete is not up to the job.

The head coach tends not to tolerate the idea that their "PLAN A" is limiting performance. Failure must always be the weakness of others.


It's a perfect trap. Managing sports performance based on hunting marginal gains to deliver a fix "PLAN A" to the exclusion of all else.


The only way to survive this trap is for an athlete is to be good enough to win regardless of any plan and make sure they credit the head coach for having such a good programme. Everyone else is likely to suffer under the programme.


The only way to survive as a coach is to do as the head coach says. Even then, if the head coach decides for whatever reason they don’t like us, the head coach will find a way to get rid of us. Often on the lines that we are not good enough to implement the head coaches "PLAN A".


It’s the perfect trap.


I have spent my life trying to escape this trap. Not only in sports, but in education and the world of work where leaders use various teaching and management methodologies as their "PLAN A".


Agile sports coaching is my best and simplest solution yet.


It's based on technical habit-based sports coaches having a looser grip on a "plan a" working alongside agile sports coaches who help athletes adapt to find other ways when "plan a" doesn’t work as well as everyone hoped. This is how many of the best head coaches in the world run their sports performance programs.

This is why I have created LifeSkills21.club ...To use sports to coach everyone to learn in an agile way.

 
Swimmer

WHAT TRIGGERS

US TO THINK

IS FINDING WHAT IS NEXT 

WHEN THE ROUTE IS UNKNOWN

 
Basketball Dunk

THE HIGHEST PERFORMANCE


COMES FROM A COMBINATION OF

EXECUTING

“PLAN A”

WITH THE ABILITY TO ADAPT TO FIND OTHER WAYS IF AND WHEN “PLAN A”

IS NOT WORKING

​TO FIND A NEW "PLAN A" WHEN THE ROUTE IS UNCLEAR

A WAY TO ACHIEVE THE HIGHEST PERFORMANCE IS TO HAVE TECHNICAL COACHES TO HELP PLAYERS EXECUTE “PLAN A” WORKING ALONGSIDE AGILE SPORTS COACHES HELPING PLAYERS ADAPT TO FIND WHAT IS NEXT WHEN THE ROUTE IS UNCLEAR BECAUSE "PLAN A" IS NOT WORKING AS EXPECTED

 

ABOUT

We are Agile Sports Coaches

We have taken the concepts of agile from the corporate world and applied it to the sports world to create Agile Sports Coaching.

EVERYONE can be agile enough to navigate an unclear route to find what is next.


EVERYONE can find a level of performance they didn't know they had.


Being agile is a crucial life skills for the 21sr century.

By Jon Thorne

 
Image by Sandie Clarke

IF WE ARE NOT AGILE THINKERS WE CAN STOP THINKING WHEN THINGS DON'T GO TO PLAN 

WE CAN PANIC

AT A TIME WHEN WE

NEED TO THINK CLEARLY

TO FIND

ANOTHER

WAY

 
Image by TJ Dragotta

WE PLAN WHAT WE KNOW


WHEN WE PERFORM AS PLANNED WE DO WHAT WE KNOW

WE CAN DO

 
Image by Dean Bennett

THE BEST OF BEST ARE AGILE


THEY PUSH THE BOUNDARIES OF WHAT EVERYONE THINKS IS POSSIBLE

WHEN THEY FIND PERFORMANCE THEY DIDN'T KNOW THEY HAD ... THEY DO WHAT HAS NEVER BEEN DONE BEFORE

 

WE ARE BACK IN LOCKDOWN :(

Image by Belinda Fewings
 
Image by Markus Spiske

AGILE SPORTS COACHING

AGILE SPORTS COACHES HELP ATHLETES, (FROM MANY SPORTS AND ALL ABILITIES), STAY MENTALLY FRESH, MENTALLY ALERT, MENTALLY AGILE.


TO THINK THEIR WAY THROUGH UNCLEAR ROUTES TO PERFORMANCE THEY DIDN'T KNOW THEY HAD

 
Slamdunk

DO
SOMETHING INCREDIBLE

BE MENTALLY FRESH, ALERT, AGILE


KEEP FINDING PERFORMANCE WHEN THE ROUTE IS UNCLEAR

KEEP FINDING WAYS TO DO WHAT NOBODY THINKS YOU CAN DO

BOOK ONTO A SESSION

THAT SUITS YOUR ATHLETIC ABILITIES AND

YOUR SPORT

We are open to all players from all clubs and no clubs. From pro's to beginners.

 
Image by JC Gellidon

WE RUN PRIVATE SESSIONS TO HELP PROFESSIONAL ATHLETES STAY MENTALLY FRESH, ALERT, AGILE

TO KEEP FINDING PERFORMANCE WHEN THE ROUTE IS UNCLEAR

TO WIN GAMES THAT ARE BEING LOST

TO KEEP FINDING WAYS TO DO WHAT SPECTATORS DREAM OF BEING ABLE TO DO

SESSIONS CAN BE BASED ON LEARNING A DIFFERENT SPORT, OR GAME DESIGN, STORY CREATING, COOKING. ALL COACHED IN A WAY THAT KEEPS ATHLETES MENTALLY FRESH, ALERT, AGILE.

IF ON A LONG TOUR WE CAN TURN UP TO RUN EVENTS

 
Basketball

AGILE SPORTS CENTRES

AGILE SPORTS COACHES

HELP EVERYONE TO USE SPORTS 

TO KEEP MENTALLY FRESH, ALERT, AGILE

Everyone keeps finding performance when the route is unclear.

Everyone keeps doing things they didn't know they could do.

Pick a centre, a sport, and level of expertise, book on and join us

 
Basketball

ON-LINE COURSE

HOW TO KEEP MENTALLY FRESH, ALERT, AGILE

This is version 1.5 of the course (first 2 videos are new)

 
Image by JC Gellidon

ADDING AGILE SPORTS COACHING TO A PERFORMANCE PROGAMME

CREATES THE HIGHEST PERFORMING TEAM

A TEAM THAT EXECUTES WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE AND ADAPTS TO FIND OTHER WAYS WHEN WHAT THEY ARE DOING IS NOT WORKING

SESSIONS CAN BE BASED ON LEARNING A DIFFERENT SPORT, OR GAME DESIGN, STORY CREATING, COOKING. ALL COACHED IN A WAY THAT KEEPS ATHLETES MENTALLY FRESH, ALERT, AGILE.

IF ON A LONG TOUR WE CAN TURN UP TO RUN EVENTS

 
Basketball Players

AGILE SPORTS CENTERS

AGILE SPORTS COACHES

HELP EVERYONE TO USE SPORTS 

TO KEEP MENTALLY FRESH, ALERT, AGILE

EVERYONE KEEPS FINDING PERFORMANCE THEY DIDN'T KNOW THEY HAD

Pick a centre, a sport, and level of expertise, book on and join us.

 
Basketball Player


WHEN ATHLETES ARE MENTALLY FRESH, ALERT, AGILE


THEY EXECUTE AS PRACTICED AND ADAPT IF IT DOESN'T GO TO PLAN

THEY ACHIEVE THE HIGHEST POSSIBLE PERFORMANCE

 
Basketball Player in Action

WHEN FOLLOWING A PERFORMANCE PATHWAY EVERYTHING IS LAID OUT FOR THE ATHLETE


ATHLETES TURN UP, PRACTICE HARD, MAKE PROGRESS. THEY DON'T HAVE TO THINK

IF ATHLETES SPEND ALL THEIR TIME FOLLOWING CLEAR PERFORMANCE PATHWAYS THEY CAN MENTALLY SWITCH OFF

THEY DON’T DEVELOP THE ABILITY TO THINK ON THEIR FEET AND ADAPT WHEN THE ROUTE TO PERFORMANCE IS UNCLEAR

THEY LIMIT PERFORMANCE TO TRYING HARDER

 
Image by Jeffrey F Lin

ABOUT THE COURSE

When athletes habitually practice their sport it is easy for them to mentally switch off and limit their performance to trying harder at what they can already do.

Agile sports coaching is about using different sports to keep athletes mentally fresh, alert, agile by showing them how to navigate an unclear route to find performance they didn't know they had.


Instead of coaching habits an Agile sport coach uses bite-size actions that have pause points where athletes think and adapt. Mixing habits and bite-size actions helps athletes to perform to their highest level. They execute as practiced and adapt if it doesn't go to plan.

This course will share how an Agile Sports Coach helps athletes navigate unclear routes to find performance they didn't know they had. It includes examples of elite athletes trying harder to do what was practiced even when it is clear its not working. And examples of elite athletes pausing, thinking and adapting to do amazing things when what they practiced didn't go to plan.

 
Image by Dean Bennett

WHEN ATHLETES ARE MENTALLY FRESH, ALERT, AGILE


THEY EXECUTE COACHES PLANS AND IF THE OPPOSITION STOP IT WORKING, THEY PAUSE, THINK ON THEIR FEET, ADAPT AND DO SOMETHING AMAZING. THEY FIND A WAY TO MAKE IT WORK

THEY ACHIEVE THE HIGHEST POSSIBLE PERFORMANCE