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Episode 189: Key Perceptual Cues and Context

Video Highlights

- Key Perceptual Cues.
- Speed has Context.
- React faster rather than move faster.

As we get deeper into really training people, we have to make them good foundationally, and then we have to teach them what’s important to look at. Key perceptual cues. Key perceptual cues.

… backfired. Can you imagine the Secret Service agent? You’re walking behind the president, doing parades and all these things, and all the sounds that you have to become accustomed to and not react weirdly to. Then, to be able to isolate out of all that and go, bam, uh-oh, move, and have that triggered into you. That is the result of training, but this isn’t like a ton of physical training. This is also a lot of mental training and understanding what we’re going to talk about later, which are key perceptual cues. Key perceptual cues.

That is going to be one of the big aspects of stuff that we go through. In terms of shaping this class, what I want you to recognize is it’s not enough for us to go, here’s how to improve visual acuity, here’s how to improve stereopsis, binocular vision, blah, blah, blah. As we get deeper into really training people, we have to make them good foundationally, and then we have to teach them what’s important to look at, what’s important to listen to, what’s important to feel. That becomes a much more demanding task depending on the level of the athlete that you’re working with. Does everyone understand where we’re headed?

That is perceptual issues, perceptual gaps. How may of you after this little discussion … I mean, it seems logical, but how many of you feel like if I could give you a drill that would save you eight milliseconds, is that useful? If you’re an athlete? If you’re driving a car? Okay. If I could give you an extra tenth of a second, is that worth while? All right. If I say eight milliseconds, most people have no idea how fast that is anyway. All right. I’ll just ask you this way. If I could actually make you an eye blink faster, is that useful? Yeah. Depends on the context. Right? Absolutely. That’s what we’re going to be looking at, and then we want to talk about this idea of contextual speed.

Now, not all speed is equal. This is the easiest thing and the first to understand, but still it’s one of those weird things I run into all the time. Is it possible to go too fast and lose? Absolutely. Yeah. Formula One racing. Speed has to be looked at contextually.

Conceptual Speed:  A graphic of a superhero looking woman in a power pose flying across at warp speed.

Now, if I’m Usain Bolt, which I’m not, but if I was, running 100 meters faster than anybody on the planet is an incredibly useful skill. Correct? Now, how long has Bolt been training to run 100 meters faster than anyone on the planet? Most of his life. Right? Now, he was a 400-meter guy because everyone thought he was too tall to be a 100-meter guy for many years. 200, 400. He was like, “I want to run the 100.” They’re like, “No. You’re too big. You’re too tall. You start like crap. You’re a little like a stork coming out of there.” He still starts like crap. He just is amazingly good at accelerating, and once he gets up to top speed, he maintains top speed longer than anybody. He turned into be obviously the best ever.

Now, a lot of coaches without really thinking about it would love to have all their players have this kind of speed, but if you look at almost all events outside of track and field events, how far do we need to be fast? Yeah. Is that contextual? Yes or no. All right. For a soccer player, which has been analyzed ad nauseam, in a professional soccer match, in most cases your max speed needs to be in five meters. They’re going to do between 700 and 750 changes of direction, over 90 minutes.

We can actually break sports down and go, how good and how fast do you need to be and what kind of distance? Does that make sense to everybody? Contextual speed is incredibly important to me. A lot of times what I find is people get kind of weird because they think speed, they think always about running. Right? It’s about running speed, cutting speed, agility speed. What about hand speed? Does hand speed matter? Yeah. You ever box? Hand speed matters. Ever wrestle? Hand speed matters. When you think about speed development, it has to be looked at contextually.

Now, what we’re going to do in this class, we’re going to focus on hand speed development. We’re going to focus on linear speed and also change of direction speed. We’re going to do all those different things because I want you to have a menu of things to choose from. The biggest question always comes down to not can I make you faster, but can I make you faster in a way that makes you better.

It’s not so much about moving faster. It’s about reacting sooner.

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