League of Legends: The Problems of Private Coaching

League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games.
League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /
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League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games.
League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /

Getting private coaching for League of Legends has its drawbacks.

Training Plan

Another big issue that VOD reviews have, and thus most coachings in general, is that the coaching often ends when the VOD ends. As previously mentioned, the coach will often send the player on their way with a few tips and observations about their play, but with few ways to actually put what the player learned into practice.

Very rarely did I have a session with a coach that included any sort of hands-on training element, either in the session or afterwards. For instance, if a coach observed that I was having trouble CSing, it was rare for them take me into the practice tool and give me instructions as I last hit, and even rarer for them to give me any sort of drill I could use to practice on my own when the session ended. Instead, it was often just saying “well you need to work on last-hitting” or “go into practice tool and do some CSing drills.”

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Coaches very often are able to identify the issues a player is having, but the real value of a coach is being able to help correct those issues. That value is, sadly, not often provided.

If you’re looking to hire a coach, you should ask what sorts of resources they offer beyond a simple VOD review. Will they give you training advice, teach you how to review your own VODs to identify mistakes consistently, or offer continued feedback?

Ideally, a coach will provide some type of training plan to a player so that they can continue to build off the lessons they learned. Better coaches will have training plans already built to take the player through, with lessons that teach fundamentals and then have lessons built off those fundamentals.

Consistent Feedback

All of the issues we have already discussed ultimately boil down to one, overarching issue: lack of feedback in coaching. Most coaches only offer ala carte sessions, meaning that the client will likely take one lesson, maybe returning sporadically.

While it’s good that coaches will offer single sessions, allowing you to try them out and see if they’re a good fit, the better coaches will also offer package deals or programs. In this way, the coach is showing a commitment to the player and their growth.

Even so, merely having multiple scheduled lessons is not sufficient feedback if it’s simply in the form of VOD review. Just going through VODs once a week, without the training plan to help the player improve will only take them so far. Again, it’s imperative to make sure that the coach you pick is one who will be giving you the hands-on teaching, otherwise, you might not fully internalize what you were taught.

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The best coaching, whether it be in League of Legends, sports, or academics, involves the use of practical learning, teaching and mastering fundamentals before moving on, and constant feedback and reinforcements. Those coaches exist in League of Legends, but they are the exception, not the rule. Make sure you’re getting your money’s worth when getting a coach, even if it’s free.