Post by Jon Pastuszek
May 3, 2011
Xinjiang Guanghui’s head coach, Jiang Xingquan, has been known throughout his long career as a strict disciplinarian.
(Photo via China Daily)
“Good pupils are to be brought up by strict teachers” — yán shī chū gāo tú (严师出高徒) — isn’t just a saying in China, it’s an entire philosophy on education. The concept of yange, being strict, is believed by some in the PRC as the only way to instill students with discipline, dignity and hard-work. It’s also practiced by parents in the Western world, like Amy Chua for example, who’s highly controversial essay written for the Wall Street Journal titled “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior,” outlined the perceived advantages of raising a child under extremely strict Chinese-style supervision.
As basketball coaches are teachers too, the drill-sergeant teaching style can also carry over to the Chinese hardwood. Known for his unbending authoritarianism as much as his impressive resume of coaching accomplishments, the aforementioned Chua would probably approve of Xinjiang’s Jiang Xingquan coaching style. Jiang, who was head coach of Team China’s “golden era” in from 1992-1995 when the Chinese finished eighth at the 1994 FIBA World Championship, prides himself on instituting harsh rules both on the court and off, demanding his players fall in line with his strict policies. With the success his coaching style has brought, the man has his supporters, especially those who are older.
So how tight of a ship does Jiang run, then? Over the weekend, Sina reporter Zhang Shu got a hold of “Jiang Xingquan’s 11 inflexible military rules” and posted them up online for all to see. And yeah, you betcha they’re strict.
1. During the season, all closed coil circuits must be unplugged. (Which means no T.V.)
2. During the season, all cell phones — players typically have two to three — must be handed over to the coaching staff at night.
3. Lights must be off by 10 p.m. A coach will check the rooms to enforce this rule before players go to sleep.
4. During the season, all players are not allowed to go outside of the team compound, morning, afternoon and night. If a player wants to go out, he must receive permission from a coach. After he receives permission he can leave, but must report back to the coach once he returns.
5. Players are forbidden to hold social engagements outside of the team and are strictly prohibited from drinking alcohol. Those who break this rule will be suspended from practice and fined.
6. Suspended players must write a deep self-examination. If the self-examination is not in-depth enough then the player won’t be allowed to return to practice. He will also be fined one month’s salary. The seriousness of the situation will then be reassessed and the suspension will either be extended or terminated.
7. Practice will be held six days a week for five hours a day. No practice on Sundays.
8. Players are encouraged to work out on their own on Sunday’s, but won’t be punished if they decide not to. (If they decide not to work out, they will likely be scolded).
9. Players are prohibited from smoking cigarettes.
10. Players are forbidden to chew gum during games.
11. During the season, players are forbidden to be interviewed by the media. If a player needs to be interviewed, he must receive permission from a coach.
Note that these rules and other similar ones instituted by other teams only apply for Chinese players; not for foreign ones. Because honestly, there wouldn’t be any foreign players in China otherwise.