First do it right, then speed it up

This is very common rule in training, but is it really neccesery?
I was reading Motor Learning and Performance (Schmidt, 2004), and the author talks about speed-precision trade off, but according to his law speeding up above 70% of max. precision increase (Schmidt law). So, doing things faster induce less error (this exper. is measured using simple one-joint terminal movements and I dont know can this be used in real-life, multi-joint movements)
Author is mentioned slow-motion practice also in his book. It can be used in trainig only if it has a transfer on high speed (if the generalize motor program is the same).
Another thing… if you correct errors during slow-mo (beacuse of enough time to do that and feedback) it is questionable can you do it at high speeds… And errors happened at high speed could/couldn be happened at low speeds of movement execution and vice versa.
Also doing things slower is maybe neuro-mechanicaly (kinematics, kinetics, neural control, motor programs, feedback etc) tottaly different than doing it at real speeds, so you are wasting you precious time and learning nothing…
Charly, can You please explain more on this topic and it usage in sprint training and training in general? What did You exactly mean by “First do it right, then speed it up”? First of all, I totaly agree with this, but I am interested in other opinions (like Schmidt)
I am training russian Systema (martial art, or I should say fighting methology), where we train totaly chaoticaly and in slow-mo (offcourse, we are progressing to higher speed, but slowly)

On another subject… I passed an exam today (Theory of sport training) and get the best grade… the exam questions were Wave-like loading, and preparatory period… so I would like to thank all of you here, because your posts are of great help… TNX folks… tnx Charlie…

By the way, I put the greatest serbian scientist (and maybe worlds) as my Avatar – Nikola Tesla! Great guy… :slight_smile:

You are correct to suggest that some skills don’t lend themselves to performing them slowly ( sprinting is one item of course). If the complete skill cannot be slowed down, divide the skill up into parts (drills) and perform them at the highest rate that will allow for perfect form and relaxation- but no faster, then, as skill advances, speed things up accordingly.

You’re also right that Tesla was prob the greatest inventor/theorist the world has yet seen (anti-aircraft EMP weapons before 1910??? Wow!) Many of his patent applications were kept secret for decades after his death.

Maybe the saying should be “do it relaxed then speed it up”. The thing i noticed about all the athletes in CF’s videos etc is that they do run with thier shoulders relaxed and down. I guess Charlie emphasises this from day one - and especially in the power speed drills.

Interestingly there is some evidence in research on “1 shot learning” that doing the steps correctly in the right order the first time (regardless of speed) increases your chance of performing the skill correctly on following attempts. An example of this would be playing all the notes in a section of music in the right order correctly the first time with no regard for rhythm etc before embarking on practice.

I use this technique when teaching exercise form and it works a treat, so long as they get it right the first time everything seems to fall into place.

When You say “divide the skill” (part practice - Schmidt) are You talking in general or about sprinting alone? How can you even split in parts something that is unsplitable - cyclic action? It will then have tottaly different neural control mechanism!! (using something other than central pattern generator )Ofcourse that sprinting form is in function of runing speed (you cant have sprint form at speeds lower than 70-80%? Correct?) but how can you practice it in parts at higher speeds (in theory, we call this preparatory exercises - srb. pripremne vezbe) - do you mean butt-kicks, A&Bs, skips, arm actions etc? How do you connect this in a whole? The whole is bigger than the sums of its elements… Tnx in advance Charlie

Tottaly agree with you tc0710! But what if you are relaxed when slow, but when you try to speed it up you get tense? Maybe doing things at moderate to high speed wich allow good sprint form and corrections at the time?

I am a member of quality rather than quantity philosophy, but again, doing things correct at slow speeds doesnt guarantee (what things?discreete,serial,continuous-cyclic)you that you will do them correctly at higher speeds… So I suggest that you should do the drils at the highest speed posible where there is still a possibility for applying corrections…
About that musical notes… this is what we call generalized motor program - kinetic melody should be the same but the tempo could change. If the tempo (speed of drill) affect melody (rhytm of movement) there is no tranfer and you are learning different skill… see Schmidt book, it is a great read!

…or better to say:
First learn to do it right at moderate to high speeds, and then speed it up a little bit more :slight_smile:

Thanks for the info, i read this a long time ago and can’t remember it fully but I will go look it up again now you have prompted my memory.

As for “part practice” during sprinting, CF uses hill work to practice correct acceleration mechanics at slower speeds or for athletes with low strength. He also uses flying 20s to practice top speed work without the tightness that might occur if you had to accelerate hard to achieve it. He uses power speed drills (As, Bs etc) to teach arm mechanics and staying relaxed. So instead of breaking the cyclic running action down into parts he is splitting the phases of running (accel, top speed etc) into parts and working on them individually.

Charlie, am I right in thinking you believe that arm action is relatively easy to correct (both at slow - PS drills - intermediate - hill work and higher speeds) and once correct it will do a lot to produce/permit optimal leg mechanics? I guess then optimal leg mechanics are a fuction of flexability and strength.

Tnx Tc…
I watched GPP DVD and I understang how Chararlie uses hill work for proper acceleration mechanics… cool!
Did Charlie ment by “part practice” doing special parts of sprint event (start, acc, max. speed, speed end. )? I understand it… but it should be called differently… terminology problem… :slight_smile:

I believe Charlie is referring to part practice as you defined it.
However, each stride can also be broken up into its parts and trained this way.
IMO, both methods are useful.