As a player progresses and begins to learn new skills within the game, most assume they must practice the skill over and over, many times. However, this is not entirely true. When an athlete begins to develop new skills, they usually have a very low level of “feeling awareness,” which means they are not sure what the process or execution of the skill should feel like. Herein lies the problem of thinking that doing lots of repetitions is helping develop the desire skill. Because, an athlete doesn’t really know what the proper execution feels like, they are quite possibly encoding an improper neural synaptic response, which will only make the time it takes to acquire the skill much longer.
This is why, when working with an athlete, doesn’t matter if it’s lacrosse or any other sport, I suggest to always beginning with a few repetitions, while focusing intently on the feeling of the movements of the skill. Continue doing repetitions, but if focus begins to wane, or if errors in execution onset, or if the repetitions become too casual. Stop. Take a break and then come back. Read More