Development Zone®


PCA Resource Center

Get It Right The First Time? It's A Fluke.

Share This Resource

Grant Small is a former coach and sports sciences professor from the University of Abertay, Dundee, and now serves as the Program Manager for Positive Coaching Alliance Scotland (@ScottishFA_PCS). Small was responsible for research in small-sided game development, recipient of the UEFA coaching award, and worked as a performance manager for the Hibernian Football Club.

According to Small, “absolutely central to any coaching philosophy is that a coach understands what mastery is.” This includes knowing the importance of hard work and accepting that mistakes happen. Mistakes are one of the most beneficial tools for athletes because they provide a learning opportunity for the athlete to grow and improve. In fact, if an athlete gets something right the first time, Small points out that it was probably a fluke. Becoming better as a coach and helping create better athletes and people requires a recognition of mastery.