Team competitions follow the interclub competitions on the physie calendar and are a challenging and rewarding experience that take commitment and persistence. If you are competing in teams this year you may not have recognised some of the skills you have been developing along the way! Here are a few points to remind you how you can you be a great team member and what you should keep in mind.
1) “How do WE look?”
As an individual competitor your aim is to shine and draw the judges eye using your abilities. For example, this might be your flexibility, your core strength, or your stage presence. In contrast, when you are a part of a team, the goal is for the entire team to excel as one especially when it comes to synchronisation.
When you compete in a team you will be familiar with the strengths and weaknesses of each member while taking care of the part you have in the team. You are a part of something bigger than just yourself and it will require a different skill set. When you are committed to a team, instead of asking “How do I look?” regularly ask “How do WE look?”
2) No One Can Take Your Place
A team is not a team if you are even one member short! Your place in the team matters. No matter how amazing every other girl is on your team, no one can take your place. Centre front needs to be spot on when it comes to timing, while the front corners require accuracy of turning on the incline and knowing the syllabus confidently. The girls in the spaces have the challenging role of keeping the formation of the team and forming diagonals. Centre back must be in line perfectly with centre front and the back corner girls do a lot of the thinking for the team since they see the timing and formations from the back row. There is not one position that matters more or less than another in a team. Without one, a team is incomplete.
Value each of your team members. No matter how amazing one girl is, she cannot win a team on her own. Know your strengths but know and appreciate your team mates strengths also.
3) Use Your Peripheral Vision
Remain aware of those around you at all times. Whether you are leading or following, you will need to use your peripheral vision to keep an eye on your team mates as you work as one to be synchronised. Watch for timing and keep in formation with those around you.
4) Patience Please!
Be Patient. There will be things that you cannot control. You will need to trust your team mates to take care of their part. Encourage and support them when they struggle or if they get things wrong. Good team mates will do the same for you! (And don’t forget to be patient with yourself when you face a challenge or make a mistake!)
5) We’re In This Together!
Working towards a common goal connects you to one another. You share in the hard work, the challenges, the disappointments as well as the successes! Each moment brings you closer together as you learn to respect one another and lift each other up! For this reason, as a teacher, I believe participating in a team will have an impact on the culture of your club, for the positive. In a sport where we otherwise compete against each other, teams is a welcome change. And remember, if you are unable to be in a team this year you can always be a part of the cheer squad for your club!