Wednesday, April 29, 2009

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An Eye for Detail



Developing an eye for detail is one skill that instructors and coaches should always be working on. Learning to make fine distinctions between what people are SAYING they are doing and what they are ACTUALLY doing is an important part of a coach’s development. A part of coaching excellence is to develop the skill of breaking a technique down into it’s composite part, and then delivering them in digestible form and order to the students.
Here’s a basic model of how this can be done …

- Demonstrate the technique in it’s entirety
- Explain the Context
- Illustrate the final goal (where we want to end up)
- Back up from that point a bit – then move to the finish
- If necessary back up a bit more – move again to the finish
- Back up to the start – move to the finish
- Practice the technique in it’s entirety
- Examine the biomechanical aspects of the technique (which levers)
- Examine the ‘firing order’ of the techniques component parts (timings)
- Examine the geometry of the technique (directions and angles)

There are other models of course – but I would just like to make the point that a simple demonstration of the technique, followed by a request that everyone copy to their best ability – IS NOT TEACHING!
Developing an eye for detail is not only crucial for the professional instructor, but it should be a habit that students should endeavour to develop as soon as possible in the training.
Train Smart – train Safe.
JBW

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