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From Theory to Practice Volleyball Hitting and Passing Post 3

by Daniel on October 12th, 2011

4. How would you interact with the students? Specifically, what type, amount and frequency of feedback (knowledge of results/performance)? Why?

Personally I prefer to use knowledge of performance, because in volleyball, like in all other sports, proper form and technique is very important. It is unusual to see a sport played at a high level by an athlete who has terrible technique. Even if a player were passing perfectly to the target with improper technique, I would encourage him to use the proper form.

If I were to use knowledge of results, all that would matter is the pass going to the target. Another reason for using knowledge of performance rather than results at this stage is if the player were to learn the wrong form being encouraged by knowledge of results, it would be difficult to correct his form in the future, and he would peak only to a certain level.

As for the amount and frequency I have chosen to use a bandwidth-type feedback along with fading, concentrating more on the knowledge of performance rather than results. Bandwidth at the beginning but not so much to produce a dependency. If a player is really struggling I might give him extra help if I see that it will not overwhelm him. Some like feedback, while others prefer to learn by themselves. Moving into a fading feedback reduces the possibility of dependency, and also at this point, most athletes already know “how,” in their minds but are still teaching their bodies how to execute the skill.

5. What methods would you use to assess learning? Describe two methods?

Evaluation of learning is difficult because of factors in practice such as fatigue and the effects of pressure. I feel that direct observation in practice over a period of weeks would probably be the best way. Observations over a period of weeks eliminate the “bad days” that everyone has. Most coaches know how much learning has occurred and where the athletes stand through this method of simple observation.

Other methods can also be used such as delayed tests. In delayed tests the positive and negative temporary effects of practice are eliminated, by testing after a sufficient rest period or at the beginning of practice. A positive temporary effect is enhanced performance through repetition, and a temporary negative effect would be fatigue. Charts and graph such as performance curves are not useful too me because they really do not measure learning. If I were to use such a chart it would be for motivational purposes only.

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