Coach Samson Dubina US National Team Coach 4x USATT Coach of the Year

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7 Keys to Success

By Sarah Jalli

The coach student relationship is vital for a player’s improvement. The main reason why a player should have a main coach is so that they can work together to improve. Here are some keys to having a good student-coach relationship. 
Build the trust. It is important that as a student, you trust your coach and are open to advice that he/she gives you. As a person with an outside or third person perspective on your game, your coach can help you identify problems which you can’t see on your own. 
Have good communication. It is super important to have good communication so that both you and your coach are on the same page for what the standard is. Set rules and daily tasks that need to be accomplished everyday. Having good communication also builds trust and allows a smoother experience during the match. If there is communication during practice, between practices, between matches, and between tournaments then the communication in the 2 minutes given between sets becomes easy. 
Have planning sessions. Planning is something that should be done from time to time, maybe every 2-3 weeks. In planning sessions, one thing you can talk about is the amount of training that you and the coach feel is acceptable for the month to avoid burnout. Some months might be more training than others depending on either the player’s or the coach’s feeling. You can also discuss tournament plans for the month and for the year so that both of you have a goal to work towards. Also, when you have a plan for every single day then you have a measurable goal that you can work to reach. 
Talk through controversy. If you disagree on a certain thing, it is important to TALK through controversy. The best way to approach issues is to confront directly rather than keeping it to yourself. Also, if you are able to work out your differences during practice then you will have a better understanding of each other during the match. There are so many situations that because of a small controversy that happened during the match with the coach and student, communication breaks down in the future because neither of them were willing to talk it out. And this ends up stunting the progress of the player. 
Have the same goal. Communicating to have the same goal for your game is extremely important so that the player and coach know how much effort to put in. If the coach has a different goal and the player has a different goal, then both will be pushing with a different intensity. This can lead to conflict and possibly loss of interest in playing or burnout. 
Respect each other. It is important to have respect for each other. If you disagree on something, say it in a respectful manner because you are supposed to be working together. Words carry a lot of meaning, so it is important to think before speaking.
Thank you for reading and I hope these tips will help you build your coach-student relationship in the future. 


Hi Friends,
Since closing the Samson Dubina TT Academy, I have been working full-time online with Power Pong International in sales, marketing, and online coaching!  It is great to have the best robot in the world, it is even better to have the best robot with a coach working with you every step of the way.  I'm here to give you online support!  I have given over 700 online table tennis lessons and you will be surprised at how much you can learn about techniques, tactics, your playing system, probabilities, indicators, and much much more (from the convenience of your home)!  Buy any robot here from my website and get free online lessons!  These lessons can be through FaceTime, Zoom, or any other online video chat!  
Have a question?  Great!  I love questions!
Just send me an e-mail and I'll get right back to you!  I look forward to coaching you soon!
Samson Dubina
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