Benny Sip
The Creative Life Is The Only Life
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Blog

The Olé Way: Total Football Documentary: WolVés

"You guys might not know this, but I consider myself a bit of a loner. I tend to think of myself as a one-man wolf pack. But when my sister brought Doug home, I knew he was one of my own. And my wolf pack... it grew by one. So there... there were two of us in the wolf pack... I was alone first in the pack, and then Doug joined in later. And six months ago, when Doug introduced me to you guys, I thought, "Wait a second, could it be?" And now I know for sure, I just added two more guys to my wolf pack." - Alan from The Hangover

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Ben Sippola
Let Them Skate: Totaal Voetbal (TOVO) Reflections

When I was a kid, my friends and I used to break into this skatepark near my house. Sounds funny, breaking into a skatepark, especially in New Zealand where there is seemingly one in every small town and city. The skatepark cost $15 to enter and you could skate all day. It was the only skatepark in town, so they made a business of it. 

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Ben Sippola
The "Secret Sauce" Of Player Development

Like fly fishing, the game of football is inherently beautiful, fun, playful and tasty. On its' very own, fly fishing is enough. Fly, rod, reel and river get's the job done every time. Just like in football: some kids, a ball, two goals and a pitch has and always will be enough.

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Ben Sippola
Youth Football Development From Caterpillar To Butterfly

We expect too much too soon from our young athletes. We fail to acknowledge that experts do not fly to the so called “mountain tops” of their respective fields. They crawl there. We must remember that at one point or another, masters of their craft, somewhat resembled the creepy crawling, wingless, larvae called caterpillars. Metaphorically speaking of course.

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Ben Sippola
Peddling The Bicycle: The Olé Way

We recently received this super cool bicycle from Puma. It's sort of fitting, the arrival of this super cool new bicycle. Recently, there is a saying circulating around the academy, "everyone wants to jump in the limousine, but nobody wants to peddle the bicycle." 

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Ben Sippola
Football Is The Problem

The music authorities don't hold the same opinion though. They say some pretty crappy shit. Things like, "Kids in Porirua can't learn Bach, Beethoven or Berg." Or, "classical music holds no place in low- decile school systems, it's impossible to teach anyhow." You know biased, subjective, and prejudiced crap like that. NOISE. 

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Ben Sippola
Olé Football Academy Seeking Jedi Knights

It meant that either there are a number of football trainers that are also Star Wars nerds (highly probable). Or perhaps, that football trainers widespread are searching for a different "way" forward in player development.

Photo Courtesy of Ed Peretti

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Ben Sippola
Todd Beane Resonates With The Olé Way

I think its going to come from a coach in Seattle, a pioneer in San Diego, a North Carolina parent maybe or an educator that says listen we can do better, let me try and then once we prove to people that the children are more engaged, more talented, more skilful then and only then probably will the masses come along.

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Ben Sippola
Todd Beane 14: Surfing, Soccer & Prototypes – The Way Players Learn

Children do not self-impose inane drills when they go to the beach, the skate park, nor the pitch. We do that. They build prototypes. They play, which in effect is their “first” “mold” of the game. It may be primitive, but they soon refine it. Iteration upon iteration. This is indeed the creative process at work.  They make minor adjustments as the game they play resembles the more mature and sophisticated version they see the pros play.

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Ben Sippola
The Olé Way Academy - Club Model

We see The Olé Way as a way forward for the country's football development model. Having said that, we understand that football development - development of any kind - is a multifaceted pursuit full of variables and that a one size fits all approach may not be applicable to all parties. Nevertheless, The Olé Way is one way forward for helping the New Zealand player and trainer reach his or her fullest potential, which is why we are here.

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Ben Sippola
The Olé Way: Here, You Have Permission

Culture is about permission. It has to do with what’s acceptable and what is not, and who says so... Culture is a system of permissions. It’s about the attitudes and behaviours that are acceptable and unacceptable in different communities, those that are approved of and those that are not.” - Ken Robinson

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Ben Sippola
Parents, Take A Step Back: A Letter From The Technical Director

I've spent the past few months on the sidelines observing what is occurring on match days, particularly concerning Junior teams. There are number of very good initiatives occurring on match days around how the players are conducting themselves - working hard to apply the academy's training methodologies and driving the style of play. The parents are engaged, supportive and are playing an important role nourishing the love and interest of their child's football.

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Ben Sippola
Ole Football Academy: A Porirua Project

At Olé F.A. we see unlimited potential in the child from Porirua. As a football academy located in the city of two tides, this is, of course, in our best interest. Why not?: If we were speaking rugby, no one would bat an eye at phrases like “unlimited potential” or “world - class.” So, why is it that football - soccer - causes such a ruckus in New Zealand? 

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Ben Sippola
Educating Players and Parents #theoléway: Carpool Commuter Classroom

Carpool – Commuter Classroom features podcasts, video blogs and media that the Olé staff and Young Olé players (ages 15 – 18) use in their weekly mentorship meetings and round table discussion series. The intention of Olé Carpool – Commuter Classroom content is to bring parents and families along the educational ride of youth player and personal development, as well as provide insight into day to day academy conversations.

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Ben Sippola