Luke Collins has called the Northern Beaches home for the past 25 years, after growing up in Epping. He loves the water though, so he was always destined to live by the beach.
“Growing up I was always very active. I enjoyed doing anything that involved a ball or the water. This included rugby union, basketball, cricket, surfing and kayaking to name but a few.”
Like many others, Luke found himself interested in coaching when his daughter started playing football for Brookvale, and during the past 2 seasons, he was co-coach of her U10 and U11 team. Although he has played 20 years of team sports, he had only played football in primary school, and so because of this lack of football experience, he initially completed the Skill Training Certificate 2 years ago.
“The course opened my eyes up to the great resources available via the MWFA, if you are willing to allow yourself to be teachable and prioritise learning. We can become a bit fixed in our way of thinking when we develop a few grey hairs, however when I attended the course, I found Eugene Lawrenz’s teaching style really resonated with me.”
After realising the benefit of these Coach Development sessions, Luke decided to apply for the Future Coaches Program towards the end of 2021.
“What really impressed me very early on was the culture Eugene created. The group all committed to challenging each other in a supportive environment to lift the bar to be the best coaches we could be, and this hasn’t dropped since day one. I found myself having a bit of difficulty trying to sleep after the sessions, as I was buzzing after the experience. I enjoy coming together with other likeminded coaches who equally appreciate the importance of their development.”
On the momentum of attending the Future Coaches Program, Luke also started his C-Licence, and he feels completing the two courses together has turbo charged his learning.
“The course opened my eyes to the bigger picture a community coach plays. We are like a cog in the machine of developing Australia’s football talent of the future, and it is very hard for more senior coaches to “patch up” any missed prior learning. I also had to reflect on what I considered to be my biggest challenges in coaching, and what initially came to mind was how do I coach a desire for continual self-improvement, but at the same time teach self-acceptance, as these two can seem contradictory. I am working on cracking the magic formula to getting this balance right through creating a similar kind of challenging but supportive environment.”
Luke is eagerly awaiting the commencement of the 2022 season to see how he can apply what he has learnt.
“The true magic for me happens with what kids can learn from team sports, for example how a closely contested loss where the team gives everything will provide far more development then an easy win. Perceived failure teaches you things about yourself that you don’t learn from success. I am also passionate about kids being healthy and active – I remember reading a quote that kids make up 20% of the population but 100% of the future, so I can’t for the life of me think of a better passion project then being part of your child’s sporting development, having fun and coming together as a community in a healthy context. I would hope to bring a love of movement to any team I coach, that extends beyond the sidelines and playing careers.”
MWFA is looking forward to seeing Luke’s continued positive influence on his players and the football community.
Look out for more articles on other MWFA Future Coaches over the coming months.