Tag Archive for: Physical Education

What coaches can learn from watching kids throw

Recently James Marshall wrote about the need to develop general throwing skills before specific throwing skills. The topic of general throwing skills is worth diving more into. Thankfully this is a task that GAIN faculty member and award-winning physical education teacher Greg Thompson has to deal with every day at the primary school level. Watching his teaching progressions can help coaches of all levels in several areas. Below I show two key lessons we can take from Thompson: how advanced coaches can improve their understanding of movement by breaking it down to its basics, and how to balance constraints and cues in teaching movement.

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Teaching general and specific throwing skills

Somehow the way we learned basic movements became reversed over the last few decades. Kids used to learn movement through play, then apply it to sport. Now, more often than not, kids learn movement through sports clubs. We’re not going to turn back time, but understanding the evolution of youth physical education and activity (or lack thereof) can help us improve our teaching skills going forward.

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Coaching speed for children

Most people assume genetics are the factor that determines sprinting. As the cliche goes: sprinters are born while marathoners are made. That may be accurate if your goal is to become a world-class sprinter. However, if you are an average human being and your goal is to run faster, then environment and coaching become important factors too. This is especially important with children.

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Using mini workouts to improve physical intelligence

Look back in time and the everyday demands of the world automatically traditionally created a physically intelligent person. To be physically connected to the natural world through the body and culture used to be vital for survival. Then came industrialization and the information economy. Now we don’t have to be physically sophisticated to eat, survive, or earn a living. That’s great to some extent, but the byproduct is that most of us have become more alienated from our deconditioned and objectified bodies.

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July 2020 in review: physical education

Our focus in July has been physical education. Physical education has long defined society’s foundation of movement, and there is a lot that coaches in all areas can learn from it. Below is a summary of all the new resources we’ve put together on the topic, including 2 new videos, 2 new podcasts, and 7 new articles. Read more

Are you a teacher or a trainer? Lessons for S&C coaches from the PE classroom

Are you a teacher or are you a trainer? The difference might seem trivial, but it is fundamental in how you approach your athletes and sporting environment. Read more

The warmup: where PE and athletic development meet

The typical warm-up lasts around 10 minutes and starts most training sessions or classes. It is either a garden blooming with possibility or a wasteland of lost potential. Unfortunately, it usually the latter, a perfunctory prelude rather than training with specific long term adaptive and educational goals. Read more

Education as part of the journey of reconditioning

The athletic development community has recently looked more at physical education and how it can assist athletes. Much of the discussion centers around the coordinative development of movement and how to develop higher levels of trainability/physical literacy/physical competency. But physical education is more than just doing, it is also understanding. This cognitive aspect of physical education is central in the reconditioning process. Athletes that are educated about the cause of injury, healing process, and training in general will generally have better outcomes. Read more

Physical education is movement education

Children learn to walk and talk without a teacher. They understand the world through movement exploration. So, what is the problem with leaving movement training up to a natural process as well? Unfortunately, we don’t have to look far to see we have a problem. Children often can’t skip, roll, or throw. Adults struggle to get out of a chair and find no joy in physical activity. Read more

The value of controlled chaos

Different types of coaches frame training in different ways. Skills coaches often think in terms of time: a 20-minute block spent on passing and 10-minutes on defensive positioning. Strength coaches, on the other hand, tend to frame training in sets and reps. Each frame has its place in training, but depending on the task one can be better than the other. Read more