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Humility - Page 2

post #31 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by nolo View Post

I think it's very important to establish one's authority to be teaching that class, and I think the way to do that is to establish that I am a student of skiing too -- that's humility about being a teacher and respect for the subject. I sure hope that I convey to my students that I have not exhausted my potential at skiing nor the desire to know my subject better because my potential is a moving target, just like everyone's, and skiing is an enormous thing that perhaps has a floor but no ceiling. When the teacher puts herself on the same learning continuum, it makes the relationship more collaborative and less directive. 

 

Beautiful. This is a hugely appealing notion.

post #32 of 54

I think most instructors are very good at creating a condusive learning enviroment, that is part directive, part guided discovery and part exchanging of ideas.  I think this is at least half the equation for a good lesson, and is to me at least, the main reason a 50 year old L2 can often give a better lesson then a 20 year old L3....life experience counts alot.

 

Having said that, in my teaching career, I have never had anyone sign up for a lesson then begin by telling me how bad my Org and its ideas are, and how there is this other Org on the internet that is far superior, and thus how bad I suck at skiing and teaching.  This has never happened.  How would I respond?  Well, until it does happen....I cant say for sure...but I suspect I would just smile, and say, "ok, show me"....then on the hill, I would let the skiing do the the talking.  But what about if you cant let the skiing do the talking?  What about say, if you were....I dont know...on the internet....on some kind of chat board....how would you handle it then?  I guess there are 3 and for some people 4 options:

 

  1. Ignore it, and hope it goes away
  2. Roll over, agree they are right, and get your own glass to start drinking the cool aid too
  3. Point out, with clarity, certainty and confidence, the merits in your ideas
  4. Of course, I guess, if say, you owned the site, you could just ban people who you dont like as well.

 

Yes it would be wonderful, if both sides could work together to learn and establish and understand the respective merits and holes...I am sure there are both in all systems....JamT for example has helped me with providing some greater understanding of physics that has been fantastic.....but, this is not common, at least not on this site...to work, it that takes both sides to come to the party.  For what ever reason, there is that one school of thought out there just seems incapable of this.

post #33 of 54

http://mediacdn.snorgcontent.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/small_image/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/a/l/alwaysfull_thumb.png

www/snorgtees.com
 

post #34 of 54

A teacher, a good teacher that is, functions as a pointer to truth, but not a giver of truth. He/she employs a minimum of form to lead his/her student to the formless. Furthermore, he/she points out the importance of being able to enter a mold without being imprisoned by it, or to follow the principles without being bound by them. - Bruce Lee

 

Humility in a teacher allows both the student and the teacher to be themselves and be together, creating a space for learning. - Me

post #35 of 54

   I think good teachers are themselves sometimes students. And to be a good student, one must be humble, but also questioning. Questioning of ones teacher...in a positive/inquisitive way. I also think that sometimes the lesser experienced student is the teacher, though he/she may not realize itwink.gif...

 

   zenny

post #36 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharpedges View Post

A few years ago, Daniel Coyle published a book that's been mentioned on Epic several times:  The Talent Code.  The book visits several talent hot spots run by instructors or coaches who ignite world-class talent in their areas.  Humility was not a trait shared uniformly by the world's best teachers (best as measured by their students' accomplishments.)  The only universal traits were 1) ability to ignite passion in the learner and 2) ability to design deliberate, deep practice regimens optimal for the task, sport, or field of performance. 

 

I want to hear people respond to this.  I find arrogance detrimental to the learning environment, because it focuses attention on the teacher instead of on the learner.  But I like what Daniel Coyle has to say.  I'm stumped.  

post #37 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by LiquidFeet View Post

 

I want to hear people respond to this.  I find arrogance detrimental to the learning environment, because it focuses attention on the teacher instead of on the learner.  But I like what Daniel Coyle has to say.  I'm stumped.  


Makes sense.  Its like the Ligety vs. Lemaster thing on teaching stivots and all that entails.

post #38 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by LiquidFeet View Post

 

I want to hear people respond to this.  I find arrogance detrimental to the learning environment, because it focuses attention on the teacher instead of on the learner.  But I like what Daniel Coyle has to say.  I'm stumped.  

As I've said in most of my posts in this thread, the same teaching/personality style won't work for everyone. The majority of people who take lessons aren't solely there to improve their performance, of course that's a factor, but having an enjoyable holiday is typically much higher up. If you are coaching athletes, them having a good time isn't the primary goal, them getting better is, thus you structure your time differently and present yourself differently as well. 

 

Also, confidence and arrogance are not the same thing, confidence is very important as an instructor, arrogance is not. 

post #39 of 54

Haven't read that book, but it would seem that using the criteria presented in its description there would be a bit of bias in those findings. Instructors who are measured by the success of their best clientele in a program that caters to high level development doesn't seem the best way to design a study for those who are not in that setting to aspire to. Highly driven athletes have a different filter than most people seeking instruction.

 

IMO-humilty with regard to instructing is best defined by the person who can shift their perspectives. This also demonstrates the instuctors knowledge base, the most flexible usually have a deeper understanding of the information, they are not constrained by one dimension.

post #40 of 54

Well the real question is what the goal of the student is?  If it is purely for results in accomplishments in the sport or endeavor than humility may not be of essence.  Boot camps in the military are the best example of this I can think of.  The results are all that matters, and the teaching methodology is harsh and presumably with no humility at all on the part of the drill sergeants.

 

However people learn for more reasons than simply the output of the accomplishments.  They do it to enhance their lives, their feelings about themselves, self-confidence being one.  They do it to enhance their ability to pursue other things in their lives with the knowledge that they were able to succeed in something else.  They do it to have fun.

 

With those goals in mind a drill sergeant approach may be the opposite of what's needed.

 

An instructor's desire to make their students do things correctly often blinds them to the student's goals which might be simply to enjoy what their doing.

 

Put that in your pipe and smoke it, those of you who believe that the end justifies the means.  What is the desired end of the student - not of you?


Edited by SkiMangoJazz - 4/23/13 at 6:38am
post #41 of 54

   I find it interesting to note that confidence vs. arrogance can be difficult for some to make a distinction between. A lot of it depends on the personality/psychology of the person making the internal judgement between the two when they first meet someone else. Sometimes a person that lacks confidence in themselves won't be able to recognize the difference between the two as readily as someone who, although they may lack the skills in something like skiing (which is presumably why they are taking a lesson), posses an overall confidence and feelings of self worth in their everyday lives...

 

    zenny

post #42 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim. View Post

Also, confidence and arrogance are not the same thing, confidence is very important as an instructor, arrogance is not. 

 

I think this is the common misunderstanding that turns some people into arrogance-promoters.  They believe that humility involves self-doubt and equivocation and a focus on weaknesses, and that self-confidence necessarily involves public self-advertising of one's strengths and accomplishments (aka arrogance).  Wrong on so many fronts, but evident in some of the posts in this thread.


Edited by LiquidFeet - 4/23/13 at 6:45am
post #43 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiMangoJazz View Post

Well the real question is what the goal of the student is?  If it is purely for results in accomplishments in the sport or endeavor than humility may not be of essence.  Boot camps in the military are the best example of this I can think of.  The results are all that matters, and the teaching methodology is harsh and presumably with no humility at all on the part of the drill sergeants.

 

However people learn for more reasons that simply the output of the accomplishments.  They do it to enhance their lives, their feelings about themselves, self-confidence being one.  They do it to enhance their ability to pursue other things in their lives with the knowledge that they were able to succeed in something else.  They do it to have fun.

 

With those goals in mind a drill sergeant approach may be the opposite of what's needed.

 

An instructor's desire to make their students do things correctly often blinds them to the student's goals which might be simply to enjoy what their doing.

 

Put that in your pipe and smoke it, those of you who believe that the end justifies the means.  What is the desired end of the student - not of you?

 

I like this.  A drill sergeant's role is totally devoid of humility.  A drill sergeant's type of commanding works very efficiently in its special environment.  Inductees learn to do what they are told without question or pause. They become very efficient at immediately doing what their commanders order.  

 

Bootcamp is a small subset of all the types of learning environments people encounter.  It's certainly not equivalent to ski instruction.

post #44 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by LiquidFeet View Post

 

I think this is the common misunderstanding that turns some people into arrogance-promoters.  They believe that humility involves self-doubt and equivocation, and that self-confidence necessarily involves arrogance and self-advertising on one's accomplishments.  Wrong on so many fronts, but evident in some of the posts in this thread.

Not necessarily ... some can just ignore arrogance better than others. I can normally ignore it if the other results are there. But yes, it can be conflated with confidence. Overall, humility is always a better character trait. I just find that it isn't the most important in a coaching relationship. 

post #45 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by segbrown View Post

To answer the original question, I agree with those who say it depends just as much on the student. The best coach I ever had was an arrogant d-bag. (This was in tennis, I never really had a ski coach.) He wasn't even that great of a tennis player. But however it worked, I totally got what he was saying, the first time. My learning style and his teaching style meshed very well, and I kept paying him. Come to think of it, my most effective soccer coach had not one ounce of humility, either. Brilliant, yes, a nice man, not so much.

 

OTOH, I guess the nice thing about tennis lessons is that you don't have to sit next to the jerk on a chairlift all the time, and it's only an hour or maybe 90 min out of your day, so it's easier to tolerate. Learning styles, objectives, all those things make a difference. Some ski students just want a nice person to ski with and a few tips. Humility would be vital in that sense. Others want to be pushed hard, quickly, and maybe more abrasively. 

 

Seg, what were the qualities of your d-bag jerk of a tennis coach that worked so well for you, and which you think of as arrogant and non-humble?

post #46 of 54

Lack of humility (egomania) impairs an instructor's ability to fully connect with a student. Humility doesn't necessarily mean lack of confidence or ability. It seams to me the most skilled and self confident people are those that are most humble. One can certainly be humble and authoritative at the same time. They aren't mutually exclusive.

post #47 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by LiquidFeet View Post

 

Seg, what were the qualities of your d-bag jerk of a tennis coach that worked so well for you, and which you think of as arrogant and non-humble?

quickly ... (because abasin is reporting 13" -- is that arrogant of me??) mostly what I said before, his communication style worked perfectly for me. not too many words, and the ones he used I understood. sometimes it takes a while to get what the other person is selling. he knew what I needed and the way he told me was what I understood the first time. true, I don't normally have too much trouble with coaching except when too many words are used. so if you are struggling to communicate, sometimes it results in a lot of words. that is bad.

 

I have a coach here who everyone loves, but I can't take coaching from her, as much as I try, because she talks too much. She is one of the most accomplished players and absolutely NICEST people I have ever met, and her coaching is spot on, but for me, it doesn't work. I can tune out arrogance, but it's harder to tune out words. 

 

as for the dbag traits, nothing specific I can think of at the moment. you know it when you see it. he acted like he was god's gift to women and tennis both. i just rolled my eyes.

post #48 of 54

Segbrown, as an instructor I am encouraged to use as few words as possible in my teaching.  This is especially important in the teaching exams.  I don't equate this targeted brevity as arrogant.  Just efficient.  I'm thinking that something else must have made you think of him as arrogant.  

 

I'm seeing some guy who barked orders, showed off excellent skills that were way beyond what he was teaching just to get ooohs and aahhhhs, and called the women "honey."  

post #49 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by LiquidFeet View Post

Segbrown, as an instructor I am encouraged to use as few words as possible in my teaching.  This is especially important in the teaching exams.  I don't equate this targeted brevity as arrogant.  Just efficient.  I'm thinking that something else must have made you think of him as arrogant.  

 

I'm seeing some guy who barked orders, showed off excellent skills that were way beyond what he was teaching just to get ooohs and aahhhhs, and called the women "honey."  

I don't either ... I never said it was. 

post #50 of 54

Got it.

post #51 of 54
Thread Starter 

I had a great coach who some might have thought arrogant. At the start of a clinic he would tell his students that all he planned on doing was to share some of his beliefs about skiing -- what the students did with it was their business. "I don't care one bit whether you learn anything--that's your job." Then he'd ask, "Do you guys like to ski slow or fast?" Of course, everyone would say, "Fast!" So he'd take off and dare anyone to catch him. Though he was decades older than the next closest in age, at the end of the run, there he was at the bottom, calmly collected, breathing normally. As the group tried to catch its breath, he would ask, "Do you want to learn how to ski like that?" What an entrance! The guy would have every student hanging on every word, working super-hard to get the drills right, hoping but not expecting an encouraging word. 

 

What I loved about this guy: He didn't steal the learning. He made us want to have what he had. He was humble about his role and respected that the learning process happens inside the students, and is not "delivered" but "received." That's a huge difference.

 

Humility has nothing to do with coddling your students or blowing sunshine. It's in the relationship between the coach and the subject matter. If the subject matter always takes precedence in that relationship, that's humility. Then the coach can help his students build their own relationship with the subject matter. It's what Squatty Schuler means when he says, "I don't teach people to ski. I teach people to be skiers." 


Edited by nolo - 4/23/13 at 7:49am
post #52 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by RicB View Post

A teacher, a good teacher that is, functions as a pointer to truth, but not a giver of truth. He/she employs a minimum of form to lead his/her student to the formless. Furthermore, he/she points out the importance of being able to enter a mold without being imprisoned by it, or to follow the principles without being bound by them. - Bruce Lee

 

Humility in a teacher allows both the student and the teacher to be themselves and be together, creating a space for learning. - Me

This^^^^^

 

I've had the good fortune of learning form some incredible instructors, most of whom post on EpicSki.  

What strikes me is how some instructors have a keener sense of the way the student learns.  It seems to me that the instructor would have to set ego aside in order to guide the student to good skiing, as opposed to teaching "the move" 

post #53 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by nolo View Post

I had a great coach who some might have thought arrogant. At the start of a clinic he would tell his students that all he planned on doing was to share some of his beliefs about skiing -- what the students did with it was their business. "I don't care one bit whether you learn anything--that's your job." Then he'd ask, "Do you guys like to ski slow or fast?" Of course, everyone would say, "Fast!" So he'd take off and dare anyone to catch him. Though he was decades older than the next closest in age, at the end of the run, there he was at the bottom, calmly collected, breathing normally. As the group tried to catch its breath, he would ask, "Do you want to learn how to ski like that?" What an entrance! The guy would have every student hanging on every word, working super-hard to get the drills right, hoping but not expecting an encouraging word. 

 

What I loved about this guy: He didn't steal the learning. He made us want to have what he had. He was humble about his role and respected that the learning process happens inside the students, and is not "delivered" but "received." That's a huge difference.

 

Humility has nothing to do with coddling your students or blowing sunshine. It's in the relationship between the coach and the subject matter. If the subject matter always takes precedence in that relationship, that's humility. Then the coach can help his students build their own relationship with the subject matter. It's what Squatty Schuler means when he says, "I don't teach people to ski. I teach people to be skiers." 

 

I think this is one of the best posts I have ever read on Epic. Your second paragraph captures the essence of great coaching in fewer words than I would have thought possible!

post #54 of 54
+100% on that HardDays!!

zenny
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