The Best Coaching Cues

The Best Coaching Cues


I was walking over last Saturday I went
to the Irish powerlifting Championships I think he was called IPL and they
hosted it here in Galway so when I’m in Galway I go to rugby games, GAA, that’s
the Irish sports of hurling and football and handball and weightlifting. I go to
any event I can and I walked over there and I couldn’t get a cab, something bad
had happened, it was a fair walk so I walked there in a just torrential
rainstorm and it was interesting because as I walked I started thinking about my
workshops in the past year, talking about cueing people and then versus coaching
people. Just for review if you have an exercise that the last two minutes,
there’s no movement, like a plank you can probably give the person 3 to 5
cues. Like if I was doing the push up position plank, the cues would be you
know grip and rip the ground really squeeze the ground hard. You know crush
your armpits so hard that if you have grapes in there, they’re turning the wine.
Squeeze your knees together. Squeeze your heels together. Those are all cues but
coaching is something a little different. Coaching is when you take the athlete
aside and you you either review the movement. I was about to say replay the
movement and then foreplay it but then I realize it to be an issue with the
second word but you review what just happened and then you kind of preview
the fixes and the ideas and remind the athlete we went over this three years
ago. We worked on this two days ago. We practiced this or, “Hey that’s on me. We
need to do a better job doing this, this, and this.” So cueing is sometimes a
very quick word or two whereas the true coaching is, the cliche has been the 35,000
foot view, the big picture you get real high and you look down. Cueing is in the
moment. Coaching is big picture and I think a
lot of people, especially when I watch young personal trainers, they mix those
two up. They they talk to someone in performance. Well if someone’s talking to
you you have to process all that through your brain and the problem is you often
don’t have time to do a movement and process information
and there’s no way you’re gonna make a correction. Well what got me thinking is
about my two favorite cues are squeeze and stay tall and it was interesting
because on the way there, I all of a sudden this whole movement matrix that I’ve
been coaching for a long time, all of a sudden I started to see that stay tall
is probably the key coaching point I make in everything I do. So if we’re
doing a kneeling plank, again you go to my youtube account if you don’t know
the exercises, but if you do a kneeling plank one of the things we’re trying to
teach you is to stay tall. We’re also trying to test your hip flexors to make
sure you’re flexible. Find out if you know how to use your
butt to just to stay strong. There’s a thing called a vertical plank you put
your hands and that kind of Frankenstein’s monster position and then you pull
down, well that makes it teaches the ab wall to contract, the butt to contract
and to teach the stay tall. Oddly when you look at the hip thrust this way. From here, you’ll notice that it’s a kneeling plank just flipped over so the
hip thrust is a stay tall. The goblet squat finishes in a stay tall. The swing
finishes in a stay tall. A very good American Olympic lifting coach by
the name of Joe Mills used to basically teach his athletes that the key was to
stay tall and of course squeeze is what your, your muscles can only do
one thing and that’s contract. I guess they could try to not contract too. That
would be the opposite but so every time you lift or move or do anything you
squeeze but one of the hard things to teach people besides stay tall is to
learn to stay tight, to squeeze, to lock down and as I was walking I’ve been
working on this ever since so it’s been three or four or five days I’ve been
working on putting together this idea into some kind of intelligent, readable
concept that would be, one day and here’s a funny thing about this, once you look
at it, it becomes so apparent and obvious, people go, “Well sure. Yeah” well if it’s a sure yeah,
why hasn’t anyone ever said this basically before, which is an issue get a
lot of times in my field. The simple, the beautiful, and the elegant, the
masterful are always obvious. It’s the other nonsense that isn’t so much and of
course I think most of it is nonsense.

One thought on “The Best Coaching Cues

  1. Stay tall, Yes! I tell this everyone. It's implimented in everything, especially when you lift weights.

    I use 'ribs up' a lot too.

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