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4 Ways to get more out of MatchPlay Cards

When are we going to play a game? It is the most asked question we get asked as coaches but not anymore! MatchPlay Cards have been developed to support coaches coach through games with the ability to add different levels of complexity.


They allow players to ride their learning journey as they experience representative game challenges in a decision-rich environment. Here are four ways to get the most out of them...


Think individual:

Who are you giving MatchPlay Cards to? And why? How would that certain card support or stretch the individual within the game?


Adapt & Overcome:

Combine a small set of MatchPlay Cards that are representative of a teams style. Set one team the cards but don't tell their opponents. Can they adapt and overcome to #ChangeTheGame?

Create & Connect:

Preselect MatchPlay Cards that connect and link to the overall session theme. Consider when you are going to weave them into the session and what the game format will look like.


Get smart with time:

Use time as another dynamic to MatchPlay Cards. How long will each MatchPlay Card be in play for? Will you play the training game in quarters, thirds etc?


The MatchPlay Card range has been developed around four psychological pillars; 1) Transferring responsibility 2) Ever-changing environment with ‘Randomness’ 3) Training ‘above’ the game and 4) Being reflective. Psychological characteristics and psychological skills have been shown to be strong predictors of the athletic performance but too often the development of an athlete’s psychological state is neglected for tactical or technical development.


“The most common reason for failure amongst a group of 60 high potential athletes was their individual lack of sufficient psychological resources.”

Taylor and Collins (2019) - Shoulda, Coulda, Didnae - Why don't high potential players make it?


If we can begin to interlink the psych/social characteristics and skills together with our technical and tactical we will begin to see players increase in their ability to make decisions under pressure, confidence to be forward-thinking and skilful enough to use a toolbox of techniques to find solutions to challenges faced.

Hit the link to discover the MatchPlay Card range in full to fuel your coaching sessions: https://www.thecoachinglab.org/shop

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