(please note – this page is under development and being updated and added to in response to athlete feedback)
Organising Your Competition Diary
Planning a season is an important part of preparation for any competitive athlete in any sport. This includes putting some thought into what competitions you should attend and why. It is easy to fall into the trap of just doing high stake events (eg qualifiers and internationals), and not allowing yourself events for experience, developing your skills, or even just for fun.
Competitions can and should be used for many things.
These are the events in which you set outcome goals for yourself, and are likely important for selection purposes or fulfilling a personal goal such as being a national champion or a major championship medalist. Examples of these could be:
These are the events where you might have some process goals in place – things you want to work on in a competitive environment to test them. It might be a tactical goal, technical or even a mindset goal where you work on your overall management of the day. It could also be part of your return from injury process. Examples of these could be:
These events are where you might go with no goals or expectations other than to experience the next level. What you learn and gain from these competitions will likely inform your training moving forward. Reflection sessions after these events are highly important to capture what you have learnt. Examples of these could be:
You will notice that many of the types of events are mentioned more than once – and can be attended for many reasons, depending on where you are in your fencing journey. A cadet attending their first EFC would be better using that event for experience rather than putting themselves under pressure to perform, whereas an experienced cadet gunning for Major Championship selection would be using the same competition as a performance event.
It is also important to remember that it is not set in stone, and your plans might change throughout the season due to a number of disruptions (e.g. illness, injury, education or work). If this happens, it is a case of revisiting your plan with your personal coach and deciding how to best move forward.
What is right for you?
There are many factors you need to take into consideration. These can include:
We know that every person is different, has different goals and lives within different circumstances. This is just a guide for what you should aim for, but know that we are not expecting everyone’s to look the same, and you need not stick to this.
New to Cadet Circuit:
Top end Cadets:
Transition into Junior:
Top end Junior:
***important to note – 2024 is possibly a Commonwealth year for Cadet & Juniors and the BRC events will likely inform selection for that (check your Home Nations selection policy to find out more). It is also important to keep in mind that it will need to be accounted for in your budget if this is an event you want to do. We currently don’t know where the event will be as India has now said they are unable to host.
Your schedule can be changed and updated throughout the season, you will not be expected to stick to the choices you make at the beginning. Changes might be needed for a number of reasons – finance is tight so you need to cut back a few events, your goals may have changed, injury causes your whole season to reshape, you have something you want to work on so need to find an event for development, or simply you need a weekend off. You can use your goal sheet and performance tracker in your IADP to help with these choices.
Using the tracker on your IADP means you can keep everyone in the loop of your changes – your personal coaching team, ADP coaching team and BF staff.
If you would like support on this please email gbr_supp[email protected] and one of the team will be able to help.
If you have not done a season plan before, this might help get you started.
Answer the questions above in a notebook. Then take a look at the calendar released and write the dates out. Include any other events that you want to keep in mind. Chat through with your personal coach and parents, with your Goal Setting Sheet and answers to the questions above in front of everyone to see. Once agreed, the information can be put into your performance tracker tab of your IADP.
|Event||Reason it is Performance||Performance Goal|
|Example BRC event*||Example – Need the points for selection to GB team||L16 or better|
|Event||Reason it is Development||Process goal/event focus|
|Example U15 LPJS event*||Not earning ranking points, but want to get a warm up competition in before my first EFC||During my pool fights finishing strong – not getting to 4 and then switching off letting my opponent back into the match.|
|Event||Reason it is Development||What I hope to learn|
|Example EFC Godollo*||My first experience at this level||What an international feels like compared to domestics. What level are my nerves? How do the more experienced in the team behave and approach the event differently than they would at home.|
Just for Fun
|Event||What will be fun?|
|Example event – Cadet Winton||Overnight stay, team matches and getting to see everyone just before Christmas.|
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