Getting It Back: A Case Study of Skill Recovery in an Elite Athlete

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Dave Collins University of Edinburgh

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Calvin Morriss The Manchester Metropolitan University

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John Trower Performance Athlete Services Ltd.

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Execution of the optimum technique is the basis of high-level performance in sport. Unfortunately, however, even well-established technique can be unintentionally lost, with disastrous results for achievement. The present case study describes the design, execution, and evaluation of an intervention to aid the recovery of optimum technique in an elite javelin thrower. Using contrast style drills, in association with mental skills to promote effective learning, the intervention worked on critical performance factors identified through three-dimensional kinematic analyses. Analysis of the performer’s technique at a recent major championship provided a comparison of these performance factors and, therefore, an evaluation of the effectiveness of the intervention.

Dave Collins is with the Department of Physical Education, Sport & Leisure Studies at the University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, EH4 6JD, Scotland. Calvin Morriss is with the Department of Exercise and Sport Science at the Manchester Metropolitan University, Alsager, ST7 2HL, England. John Trower is National Events Coach with Performance Athlete Services Ltd., Edgbaston Road, Birmingham, England.

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