Does feedback from your coach improve your performance? A recent study from the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research says it does. In fact, feedback can increase your performance immediately – on the very next rep after the feedback is delivered.
The study examined fourteen NCAA Division I athletes. Athletes were asked to perform a series of maximum effort vertical jumps. Each jump was measured for power output. Each athlete performed two trials, one with immediate feedback after each jump and one trial with no feedback. The feedback was simply a report of how much power the athlete produced on the previous jump.
Jumps performed with feedback showed significantly greater power output than those performed without feedback. On average, athletes performed 6% better when given immediate feedback. That may not sound like much, but at high levels of competition 6% is the difference between first place and not finishing anywhere within sight of first place. And what would it mean to perform 6% better every day during your training? Your gains over a season would far surpass anything you could achieve without feedback from a coach.
Another interesting tidbit from the study revealed that athletes receiving feedback consistently improved over the course of the test. Athletes who did not receive feedback experienced a decline in performance towards the end of the test. Simple and immediate feedback encouraged athletes to finish the trial with their best efforts.
Having a coach who watches your movement and gives you immediate feedback is the greatest tool available to an athlete. If you want that extra 6% in performance every day, then seek out a quality coach.
1.Staub, Joseph et al. Positive Effects of Augmented Verbal Feedback on Power Production in NCAA Division I Collegiate Athletes. Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: August 2013. Vol 27. Issue 8. p2067–2072. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e31827a9c2a.
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