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Coaching the “hot hand” Is it possible?

Recently I read a great blog post  about the “hot hand” phenomenon by a group called Axon Potential. It is a great blog for all aspiring coaches because it helps you learn about the development of skill and motor learning regardless of what sport you work with. This is an area of interest to me because my girlfriend is completing her PhD in this area, and has helped me understand a lot about not just what to teach our athlete’s at FITS, but how to teach it, for more information click here

Back the issue at hand, the article I read talks about how some shooters in basketball are considered “streaky”, or when a player is hot he will keep making shots, either from the foul line or in open play.

Despite these long held beliefs within the game, the researchers “found no evidence for hot streaks beyond the random chance that a player with a give shooting percentage will sometimes hit multiple shots in a row.” They also found that players considered “streaky” aren’t actually as streaky as they seem.



Another interesting and influential factor in this field of skill acquisition that I have learned since spending more time in these circles, are that humans are terrible at detecting randomness, meaning we love to try and find a pattern, when none actually exist.

Perhaps the most interesting thing the research has found according the the article, is that confidence DOES play a role in successful performance. More confident free throw shooters have been shown to be more successful than anxious shooters.

Knowing these last 2 points, I began to think about whether the “hot hand” could be coached?

Every athlete will tell you they go out on the field confident […]

Is stiffness the key to stopping shoulder injuries?

No doubt those of you who read our blogs regularly have read Dr. Lam’s posts on muscular stiffness and its relationship to power development, athleticism and trunk stability. Well a little while ago whilst talking with leading beach volleyball players Christian Redmann and Ben Saxton after they completed a work out, I began to think that maybe stiffness is the key to stopping shoulder injuries as well.

One of the major elements of stiffness is resistance to deformation, and if we think about an overhead athlete, this is exactly what the scapula stabilisers and muscles of the rotator cuff are trying to do. But what if the coordination and timing of contraction of these muscles isn’t enough? What if the missing ingredient is the actual quality within the muscles themselves?

The guys had just done a series of exercises in the TrX cables aimed at developing their trunk. All of these exercises required the boys feet to be suspended and supporting themselves on their hands. Many of the exercises also required them to support themselves on one hand to encourage rotation of the trunk and force them to resist this rotation. I was cueing them to “squeeze their scapula down and back” on their supporting arm when Christian commented that he can’t do the exercise unless he does this-good I thought. As they finished the routine, both the boys then commented how their hitting shoulders felt much better this year than in years past. This was interesting since I know exactly what workouts they had been doing with us, and they certainly hadn’t been spending all day doing rotation exercises with thera bands as  might be expected in a typical shoulder program.  […]

Lance Armstrong – How does this make you feel?

Thanks big bro!

Sometimes the best decisions that we make in life are the decisions that we don’t get to make.

By |April 29th, 2011|Categories: Literature, Random Thoughts and Conundrums|Tags: |0 Comments


Do you have knee pain, a low back problem, or perhaps a shin problem? Chances are the problem isn’t related to the site of pain. The cause of the pain is deeply simple. It’s how you move and what you’ve been exposed to – that includes your posture, your diet, and your activity levels.