Understanding the Medium: Coaching Lessons From a Rock ‘n’ Roll Roadie

I had a 40-year profession as a high school instructor. Throughout my 8 last years I functioned as the organizer for the Carrying out Arts Magnet at Van Nuys High School. Throughout that time my co-coordinator, Chris Hale, and I carried out a restoration of the high school auditorium and set up a program that taught trainees how to establish sound and lighting for rock efficiencies – a roadie academy if you will. The financing for that program was available in the type of a state grant that supplied 90% of the funds if a donor from personal market would turn up with the other 10%. In some way we handled to talk the Frank Zappa household trust into supplying the 10%, and we were off to the races. As it ends up they were likewise happy to offer the trainer, Marque Coy, who had actually been Frank’s leading roadie for twenty years. 

I was familiar with Marque extremely well throughout the years we interacted. It ended up he had actually been on 27 world trips with a variety of leading names, consisting of Robert Palmer and Nickleback. He had actually matured in the market and had an exceptional understanding of electrical energy and air, the 2 media he was to craft anywhere he needed to establish devices. Marque understood how to look after costly cable televisions and cables so they would work completely whenever and would last for many years. He comprehended how sound (which is actually vibrating air particles) would be impacted by the shape of a “house” (where the audience would sit). He understood how bodies might alter acoustics by the method they took in noise, and he understood the distinction in between the impacts of drapes and cushioned seats versus wood seats and wood floorings with no carpets. He might find out how to set up the speakers and wire them up so the entire rig didn’t explode, and he understood how to establish Steve Vai’s guitar so the noise was ideal. With a background as a classical pianist, Marque knew his music and how to make it sound the best to the people in the seats. Watching him work and instruct his students in our program was just fascinating.

It occurred to me that he and I did the same thing. He was a master engineer of air molecules and I was an engineer of human protoplasm. Marque understood air and how it behaved, and therefore he might alter its behavior so he could obtain the optimal results in a concert setting. In my coaching I needed to be able to understand how protoplasm would change its functional structure under properly applied stress to achieve optimal results on the competition platform. The point I wish to make here is, if you are coaching humans to achieve improved performance levels, you need to get to know as much as you can about how protoplasm works and functions, and how it can be re-engineered into a more efficient functional structure.

The title of this website is Breaking Muscle and we are all here for the purpose of improving muscular function. Muscle, however, is not an isolated tissue. It is impacted and reliant upon the functioning of the circulatory, skeletal, nervous, endocrine, and digestive systems at a significant level and to a lesser degree on the integumentary, excretory, and lymphatic systems. Anyone wishing to truly master the art and science of coaching needs to become familiar with how the human body responds to training, otherwise it is impossible to make wise decisions when analyzing training and applying modification that will result in even greater results.

In the physical education culture in this country we have a prolonged history of ignoring the science involved in physical training. Many coaches simply took the required anatomy and physiology courses in college and immediately ignored them because they couldn’t figure out how those disciplines could affect an athlete’s ability to throw a ball. Well, they do, especially if the goal is to throw it even further or more often with equal efficacy.

It is time for more and more coaches within the physical training community to realize that an understanding of the medium is the key to making continued progress with their athletes and to do so in the most efficient and safe manner. All too many are enamored of the surface and end results of training, but not the planning and structuring of training as based on noise physiological principles. If you are going to be a serious coach you need to learn the science, learn how to apply it and how to provide the very best chances for your professional athletes to prosper.

Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.