Although Ivan Lendl has received a large amount of credit for Andy Murray’s victory, it is important for everyone to realize that although Ivan brought a very important piece to the puzzle, his involvement was only one aspect to the success. Andy has a very structured support team of fitness and health professionals who have been with him for more than five years. This consistency is very important for an athlete to have individuals who know the athlete very well and provides a consistent presence. The iTPA wants to congratulate the physical training team:
Jez Green – Physical Conditioning Coach
Matt Little – Strength & Conditioning Coach
Andy Ireland – Physiotherapist
All three individuals are true professionals that have dedicated a large amount of time, expertise and effort to helping Andy achieve the dream of becoming a Grand Slam champion. The consistency that they provide is very important and unfortunately this consistency is not seen enough at the junior, collegiate or professional level. It should be a red flag to parents, coaches and players when a physical conditioning coach does not last very long with a player. Many reasons may exist for a short relationship, but if a physical conditioning coach works with many players for only short periods of time, this should be a concern when evaluating the right trainer (or coach) for the athlete. Consistency is very important for long term success, and the best results are seen with a consistent team. Be wary of physical conditioning coaches who do not show long track records with players. It is similar to any professional who cannot (for multiple reasons) work with the same athlete for extended periods (i.e. greater than one year). If the trainer’s relationships are short with many different athletes, it suggests that the coach may lack the ability, interest, connectivity, long term focus or skills to take athletes through a progressive plan to reach large goals. When evaluating individuals to be part of the athlete’s team, it is important to think about the bigger picture and have a long term focus plan.