A tech coach's Christmas

27 November 2014

What Jim Dickin's hoping for in the electronic stocking this year.

I've put together a list that would make this Christmas a very special one indeed!

Thank you all for the interaction I have had in 2014 as a result of writing these articles.

Please drop me an email or a tweet if there is something I have failed to add to this Christmas list or an article you would like to see.

As I began to write the list I was trying to put it into an order - after checking with my wife though, I need to make it really clear that I would like everything on the list!

Have a great Christmas and looking forward to 2015.

Jim Dickin

Hopefully going in the xmas stocking this year

Oakley Kitchen SinkOakley Kitchen Sink Backpack

When delivering a presentation, teaching at school and making my way to a game as an analyst I am often carrying a large amount of tech gear. This bag would allow me to carry it all safely and securely. I also like the convenience of having a side access pocket for my laptop - it would make things easy to grab my laptop out for security checks at the airport and to fill any down time.

iPad/ iPhone

I use Apple products at work and so have the whole apple infrastructure (Macbook Pro, iPad, iPhone, etc). As far as possible I try and resist the yearly urge to upgrade to the latest and greatest instalment of iPhone and iPad but I must confess I feel a bit envious at the moment of my wife’s new iPhone 6 and also keep checking out the new iPad. In a lot of my work I am using the camera built in to these machines - the fact that they have been upgraded so significantly has got me very interested.

Lifeproof case

I always love a new case and have used Lifeproof cases in situations where my phone or tablet could get wet. I have stood on the edge of a rugby field in the rain to discover that by the end of the day I had drowned my phone ... from then on I ensured that I had some type of waterproof case. This is great for on the boat, at the beach and by the swimming pool, I love as well that with the nuud cases the screen is still accessible, if my request for a new phone and tablet comes true I would need new cases as well!

Braven BRV-1Rugged Speaker

A great speaker. I've used these when presenting for some added volume. I love the fact it can get wet and even get battered around a bit. Coupled with this is the option to charge your devices from a USB port in the back of the speaker and a 12-hour battery life makes this a speaker that you really can take everywhere.

Schose Rhythm+ Bluetooth Heart Rate Monitor Armband

I love the idea of being able to put this around your arm, just below the elbow, where the optical lights will measure your heart rate through the skin. Gone are the days of being constrained by a chest heart rate monitor and losing the signal if your movements are too vigorous. Now instead we can use this armband - also great if your athletes are not comfortable fixing a heart rate monitor on their chests. This connects via Bluetooth to your phone and therefore interacts with whichever fitness app you are using.

Wallee case

As I say, I do like a case and the Wallee case gives me the opportunity to use one case on my iPad and have lots of different functions. I tend to use the hand strap but also have a wall mount and a tripod adapter. In the past I've had to switch cases in order to put a hand strap on, but using the very simple Wallee mounting system, I can accessorise and change the fitting to suit my requirements.

Grid-it Gadget Organiser

All of the leads and bits and bobs that I accrue need somewhere to live - for me the perfect place would be a Grid-It gadget organiser. Very simply this is a board with different lengths of elastic on which hold everything in place. By its very nature it can be customised to suit your own circumstances and can ensure that you are not having to turn a bag upside down to find that dongle you urgently need!


There are always new apps that I can use in my coaching - check out Appy Coaching for some of the apps I use. A $20 iTunes store card would give me the opportunity to try a few new apps - I am currently keen to have a sit down and a good look at the apps below - perhaps on Boxing Day!

This is just a short list of gifts that would make a Tech Coaches Christmas.

Just a few others ...

The scary thing is that the list keeps growing every day! I am sure I would be able to make use of a drone in coaching at some stage, even if just to observe team patterns and then for that to be a learning tool for the players.

The new Go Pro’s have improved resolution and a screen on the back to frame your print, an option previously only available as an extra.

I am most excited for the release of the Apple Watch and eager to see if that can be used in coaching.

As ever, the key is not the technology but the coach and the use of the technology as a tool.

Have a great Christmas and please get in touch with items I should have added to the list.

Jim Dickin