Coaching Cues – The Difference Between a Good Fitness Coach and a Great Fitness Coach

March 12, 2018

Oftentimes the difference between good coaches and great
coaches is the result of focused attention on subtle nuances in how they perform their craft.

Movement cues are the most prevalent and widely used method of the coaching feedback loop. To be used most effectively cues should be short, specific, and actionable. Later this week we will take a closer look at coaching cues in our “Just a Thought” series.

Our #MondayCues series will focus on effective and ineffective cues when training athletes. Additionally, our hope is that this series offers you just a little distraction from the Monday beast.

One common pitfall coaches make is excessive use of a cue simply because they themselves understand it well. It resonates. And therein lies the issue; the coach understands it well, but this does not necessarily translate to athlete comprehension. Cues are to be specific but this need for specificity also comes with some inherent complication. An athlete may have an alternative connotation to a word or words in a cue and this can create unintended outputs.

Our cue today is related to the action of the first 1/3 of the deadlift and any bent knee variation.

I’ve found in many cases that the cue to simply “pull” during a deadlift has the unintended consequences of causing the athlete to unnecessarily engage and pull with the arms as well as begin to initiate rounding of the thoracic spine.

Substituting the cue to “push” or “push through the floor” has proven to be more successful in reinforcing proper deadlift mechanics as well as provide a better innate connection as to how the deadlift should feel.

This comfort provides us more safety and efficacy in the long-term results of the deadlift and related spinal loading movements.

Until next time-
Stay mobile.
🇺🇸 Praxis 🇺🇸

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