The Measure Of An Effective Cue
There are lots of commands or cues we might use to provoke an improvement or correction in the swimming stroke.
Any kind of cue for motor control we might use is, by nature, a metaphor, and metaphors are something that attempt to approximate a piece of movement reality, but are certainly not that entire reality itself. Therefore all cues have limitations on how they can help. They might also have liabilities.
Here are some questions we may ask to get a sense of how effective a particular cue is:
Does this cue provoke the desired result in most of the people who try it? If the cue makes sense to most people without a great deal of additional explanation, then it is one we might use more often. If it works for only very few people in a particular mindset or circumstance, then we should be very careful to not waste time or cause frustration trying it out on those not in position to benefit from it.
Does this cue trigger several desirable features to occur together while drawing attention to only one? The better cues are those that get the swimmer to produce more features of the desired pattern while requiring attention on very few. This is basic efficiency. The more time-and-energy efficient training process uses the fewer cues to produce more of the desired movement pattern.
Does this cue avoid creating new problems while fixing the one it was aiming for? A cue that is awkward or too easily misunderstood may help in one way an hinder in another. A good cue gets the swimmer closer to the bullseye without overshooting it.
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