Verbal cues are among the most powerful tools in a coach’s arsenal. As a lifter, working with your coach to find a set of coaching cues that work for you and that allow you to perform the lift with the minimal amount to think about is going to be critical to your success is learning the lifts and achieving consistency in them. Good cues are simple and straightforward and focus the lifter’s mind on the area they most need to pay attention to to correctly perform the lift, without causing them to overthink or overcomplicate any aspect of the movement. The more technical components that feel “natural” and don’t have to be consciously kept in mind during the lift, the more likely it is to be performed successfully. Verbal cues can be either internal or external. Internal cues tell an athlete what to do with a part of his/her body; “back tight” or “arms relaxed” would be examples. External cues relate to the outcome of the lift rather than the athlete themselves. “Push…Push” or “Stand up hard” would be examples of external cueing. Both variations of cues have a place and some athletes may grasp or understand one better than the other. In the next tech tip we will cover visual cues and the value that comes through mimicry and demonstration of proper technique.
Photo Cred: Catalyst Athletics