When the coach gives the player feedback on a specific part of the technique of whichever skill is being observed, they then expect that the player’s attention on the next and subsequent repetitions will be on the part of the technique.
When players make an error or perform a repetition that they are otherwise unsatisfied with, they will very often repeat the action that they wanted to make. This is obviously the part of the technique that they are paying attention to.
After giving a player feedback or a cue on which to focus attention, the coach should observe both the subsequent repetition AND the player’s immediate reaction. Often the coach will find that the player is actually thinking about something completely different to what they were told to do.
When players are given a new piece of information, in the form of a new cue, or feedback, that piece of information does not replace their mental picture of the technique. Most often it is an addition to their existing mental picture, so the player tries to do BOTH what they want and what the coach wants.
By watching the player’s reaction, the coach see if the new information was processed correctly. If the player is focusing on a different part of the technique there needs to be another intervention. If not, the coach can sit back and watch how the player develops.
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