Coach Blog

Design for Diversity

We coach a team sport, but earning is an individual activity.

How do we reconcile this reality? What are the first three steps.

Observe, observe, observe.

See each child. Each athlete comes to us sincerely. They look to us to look after them. That is a glorious responsibility worth cherishing. We must see both the beauty and the burden in this endeavor.


Look for trends, not incidents. Armed with insight, proceed. Take note. Take action.

“Teachers learn to scaffold learning at different levels within the same activity. They learn how to increase the challenge for each child and to scaffold appropriately, providing support and withdrawing support depending on how quickly a child is learning.” (

Consider designing for diversity, not to impose strict uniformity.

“Activities are designed to be multi-level, meaning that children of different ability levels are able to engage in the same activities, but at individually appropriate levels.” (

Let’s not be duped into believing that birthdates determine much of anything beyond the candles of a cake. As far as I can tell, birthdates are perfect for ‘excel’ sheets, but not to help children excel. If we examine policy, most academic and sport institutions impose restrictions for management optics, not for optimal learning. Let’s recognize that individuals within a team learn. Let’s also recognize that learning takes time - more so for some than others.

Intervene and step back.

Too often we are so busy teaching that we fail to teach.

In the end, all will be well. And even more so if we design for diversity.

Reprinted with kind permission from Todd Beane
Founder of TOVO Training and TOVO Academy Barcelona. In TOVO Training, Beane has combined proven pedagogical practices of experts in the field of education with the visionary components of a total football legend into a dynamic and practical training methodology.

Christchurch United FC is rethinking Talent Development with TOVO Academy Barcelona which is regarded the best holistic program in Europe for players aiming to excel in football and beyond.

"Training extraordinary educators and crazy good coaches." - Todd Beane

Todd Beane