internet for elite gymnastics coaches

by Rick McCharles

As the editor of the world’s #1 site on a search for “gymnastics coaching”, I was invited to speak to some of the top coaches in Canada. Google says I’m an expert.

It’s been 4 weeks over 2 years of course work for the those graduating from Gymnastics Canada’s most advanced coaching certification. These fine people aspire to train Artistic gymnasts to compete internationally.

larger original

As usual, the course was directed by Keith Russell (far left) from University of Saskatchewan. Far right front is course organizer Bev Dickinson.

Thanks to our excellent demonstrators, front row.

Here’s my powerpoint presentation: “computers and the internet for elite gymnastics coaches” as a PDF file.

I organized topics of internet interest for elite coaches in 4 categories:


  • coaches must be irrationally dedicated to succeed
  • computers are frustrating and prone to failure
  • computers can be time-wasters
  • use them prudently


  • the internet is faster, cheaper and more efficient than phone
  • email is essential
  • instant messaging is not essential
  • most coaches who try it, like Facebook
  • good club communication prevents problems in future
  • informal, interpersonal club communication is super important too
  • schedule many opportunities for coaches, parents and athletes to socialize


  • coaches first need to apply the information they already have
  • keep a consistent, persistent training system
  • Google is the best search engine
  • I recommended Wikipedia as a place to get answers to general questions
  • text (books, articles, etc.) highly over-rated as a communication media
  • much better for inspiration are photos
  • it’s easy to find great gymnastics photos on the internet
  • coaches should collect and display good photos of their own athletes
  • video is the most useful digital file type
  • we need a bank of great video clips posted on-line
  • YouTube is great, but low resolution
  • YouTube gets worse every day, increasingly cluttered with crap
  • YouTube has a lousy “filtering” system when you go to look for the good clips
  • Gymnastics on Demand is the best on-line video source
  • GymSmarts is the best source of DVDs
  • recommended – Paul Hall DVD
  • many websites are frustrating and rarely updated
  • recommended – (Germany)
  • recommended – International Gymnast magazine on-line
  • the best websites have an RSS feed which lets you know when something new is posted
  • recommended – Google Reader for RSS feeds
  • blogs started as on-line diaries
  • in 2007, most of my favourite websites are blogs
  • recommended – Gymblog (WAG, MAG)
  • recommended – difficulty plus execution (WAG)
  • recommended – Perfect 10 (WAG)
  • I wish more coaches would post blogs using WordPress or Blogger software
  • best index of coaching articles is


  • we need to promote our top athletes more
  • we really need to promote our coaches more
  • study the USA if you want to know how to “promote”
  • some clubs are far better at promotion than others
  • coaches need push their clubs to improve their websites (most are bad)
  • recommended club website – Gymnastics Revolution


  • we have many good administrators, very few good coaches
  • elite coaches should delegate administration to others, focusing on as few tasks as possible in their job descriptions

Published by

Rick Mc

Career gymnastics coach who loves the outdoors, and the internet.

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