Horse, for better or worse, is my bike polo coach. I think it’s a mix of us talking about polo so much, he being the guy who got me involved in the first place, and the fact that Horse pretty much has an opinion on everything (and is very willing to share it). It works out pretty well, as he’s one of the best players we’ve got and knows how to explain plays, techniques, and other sundry details of the sport to me in ways that a writer can understand (“Crusher, shooting the ball on the goal accurately is like the way a woman’s hair looks in the moonlight – it’s just right, man. It’s just right”).
However, there are times when he makes suggestions where I just get peeved. It’s not when I’ve made a big, obvious mistake and he points it out (though that does curdle my girdle as well), but more when he points out a way that I play as something than needs worked on.
This got me to thinking: are there times when players are trying to correct something that really shouldn’t be corrected? I don’t think anyone would deny that people are all individuals and there’s not a single best way to play polo, so why is it so hard to recognize when another player simply has a different style than your own?
The most obvious identifier is how long they’ve been playing the sport: if they are only a month in, it’s safe to assume that suggesting things is not trying to impose your play style on someone else. In fact, the worst thing to do would be not telling a new player what they are doing wrong.
Dangerous for no reason? Read more