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Over Communicating: Don't Overthink It

Do I worry about athletes overthinking? Yeah, it's very important.



Any kind of feedback goes back to the motor learning side of things. If I give athletes too much, they will overthink. But, if i give them too little, they may continue to fail.


So, how do I give feedback? (listen to my recent podcast on over communicating)


It revolves around the athletes' experience. If it's a young athlete who has just started training with me -- I'll provide more feedback. Positive and critical feedback. If it's an experienced athlete who has been training with me for several years, I'll pull it back.


For example, when I do video feedback with some of my experienced athletes, it's self guided. We had a session this past Friday with each athlete running a 40 and in our video session I asked them, "what do you guys think about your run?" One of them responded with, "well, my projection was good, my rhythm was good, my rise was bad-- I didn't apply pressure toward the end."


They start relaying the information I told them at the beginning, back to me.


This is why it's really important to have a philosophy and method to how you communicate and what you communicate to the athlete early on. The way you take complex ideas and relay the information in an understandable format (here is a 15sec example of how I gave feedback to the New England Patriots - start at 1:49)


Most athletes don't know what horizontal ratio force is. They don't know what their power is. They don't know. But. they know how fast they run and they know what their times are.


From my side, I have a lot of stress, dealing with athletes, because I want them to be perfect. I want their ratio force to be perfect. But all I convey to them is, "today, you're doing more resistance runs because you have to work on early acceleration." I don't have to say you're at 53% and you have to be at 55%. You know what I mean?


It's kind of like we don't know how an iPhone works, but we know that when I put my thumbs on the keyboard and hit send, it sends, even though there's 1000s of processes behind it.

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