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Learning that sticks – how analogies shape understanding

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We are consistently faced with the difficult challenge of teaching people how to move. Whether it’s helping a client learn a movement for the first time, or a patient to re-learn a pattern after injury, the ability to convey a message that can be translated into physical movement is critical. Despite this importance, we have all faced the challenge of having our instruction, feedback and cues lead to effective movement. What’s more, we face the even greater challenge of getting acute improvements to have lasting effects. So this leaves us with an important question – how do we make learning stick? To answer this question we have to realize an important truth – new information is best understood through the lens of something we already know. Put simply, stories, analogies and metaphors can help us to learn something new by leveraging the experiences and knowledge we already have. As Hannah Arendt once said, “storytelling reveals meaning without committing the error of defining it.” Therefore, we are able to convey the complexities inherent to movement, through the simplicity of the associations that emerge through analogy, metaphor and storytelling. Imbedded in science, logic and experience, this presentation will provide you with a blueprint for making your coaching memorable.

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Learning that sticks – how analogies shape understanding

  1. 1. 1 LEARNING THAT STICKS HOW ANALOGIES SHAPE UNDERSTANDING
  2. 2. 2 How often do you repeat the same cue over and over or feel like you are not being heard? Image Removed
  3. 3. 3 How many times have you instructed your client on how to perform a movement only to be asked - so what do you want me to do?
  4. 4. 4 How many times have you given your client a cue only to have them do exactly what you hoped to avoid?
  5. 5. 5 How many times have you achieved great results within a session only to see those results disappear the next time the client shows up to train? Image Removed
  6. 6. 6 Now…How many times have you also delivered a cue or bit of instruction and have it instantly work and continue to work as if you got 6 weeks of training out of one session?
  7. 7. 7 How do we optimize instruction and cueing to ensure learning?
  8. 8. 8 “CUTE AS A BABY”
  9. 9. 9 DEVELOPMENT Learning Through Association | Sensory System
  10. 10. 10 DEVELOPMENT Learning Through Association | Language System APPLE! DOG!
  11. 11. 11 “Symbols and words don’t have any intrinsic meaning except that which we assign them.” John Pollack
  12. 12. 12 “Hey honey this is a basketball” ------------------- “Oh, kind of like a soccer ball” Image Removed
  13. 13. 13 It would seem that new information is best understood through the lens of something we already know
  14. 14. 14 “IT’S KIND OF LIKE”
  15. 15. 15 “Much of humankind's remarkable mental aptitude can be attributed to analogical ability – the ability to perceive and use relational similarity.” Gentner & Calhoun (2010)
  16. 16. 16 ““In broad terms, an analogy is simply a comparison that alerts a parallel - explicit or implicit - between two distinct things, based on the perception of a shared property or relation.” -John Pollack
  17. 17. 17 Perth is in the grip of a heat wave with temperatures set to soar to 40 degrees Celsius by the end of the week. Australia is no stranger to extreme weather. Melbourne was pummeled with hailstones the size of golf balls on Saturday. Long term, droughts, bushfires, and floods have all plagued large swaths of Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria (excerpts from: James Geary in I IS AN OTHER)
  18. 18. 18 “War involves the organized, deliberate use of force to attain a goal, often the control of territory. So does football.” Offensive lineman “ battle in the trenches ” to give the quarterback, often called the “ field general, ” the time to throw “ bullet ” passes and “ march ” his team downfield. If he’s got a “ cannon for an arm, ” he might even “ throw a bomb. ” (excerpts from: Michael Mandelbaum in THE MEANING OF SPORTS via John Pollack in SHORTCUT)
  19. 19. 19 Car : Human Body Computer : Human Brain Jet : Broad Jump Rocket : Vertical Jump Prius : Jogging Porsche : Sprinting
  20. 20. 20 What role does analogy play in influencing movement skill acquisition and learning?
  21. 21. 21 “PRACTICE LIKE YOU PLAY”
  22. 22. 22 ANALOGY LEARNING Table Tennis _ 3 Groups _ Explicit, Implicit and Analogy _ Practice Performance (300 Trials) _ Explicit = Implicit = Analogy _ Recall of Explicit Rules _ Explicit > Implicit = Analogy _ Transfer Test (50 Trials-Backward Counting) _ Accuracy (Explicit < Implicit = Analogy) _ Retention Test (50 Trials) _ Accuracy (Explicit = Implicit = Analogy) (Liao et al., 2001 and Poolton et al., 2006)
  23. 23. 23 Liao et al., 2001 “draw a right-angled triangle with the bat… strike the ball while bringing the bat up the hypotenuse of the triangle” UK Poolton et al., 2007 “move the bat as if it is travelling up the side of a mountain” CHINA THE INFLUENCE OF CULTURE Analogy Learning
  24. 24. 24 ANALOGY LEARNING Free Throws _ 3 Groups _ Explicit, Analogy and Control _ Practice Performance (3-days + 480 Trials) _ Explicit = Analogy = Control _ Recall of Explicit Rules _ Explicit > Control > Analogy _ Transfer Test (1 x 40 Trials-Backward Counting) _ Accuracy (Explicit = Control < Analogy) _ Retention Test (2 x 40 Trials) _ Accuracy (Explicit = Control = Analogy) (Lam et al., 2009/2009)
  25. 25. 25 “TEE IT UP”
  26. 26. 26 ANALOGY Use the familiar to explain something less familiar Familiar Resonate emotionally | Emotionally charged Emotional Highlight similarities and obscure differences Similarities Tell a coherent story Story STRUCTURAL MAPPING Creating Effective Analogies
  27. 27. 27 Culture How does their culture influence the way they see, understand and experience the world Generation How does their generation influence their identity, world perception and social interests Motivation What is their ‘Why’ and their central driver for working towards a set of goals Habits/Hobbies What are they interested in doing and ‘Why’ are they interested in it Personality What makes them tick | What is their favorite color, super hero, super power, etc. FIVE WAYS TO IMPROVE YOUR ANALOGIES
  28. 28. 28 “It is not simply the case that the longer a piece of information stays in STM then the more likely it is to go into LTM. Instead, the more significant a stimulus or event is then the greater likelihood it is retained in LTM” Williams et al. (2008)
  29. 29. 29 ANALOGY Identify analogies that capture the same timing, speed or rhythm of the movement Time | Speed Identify analogies that capture the same force characteristics or strength demands Force | Strength Identify analogies that capture the same direction or spatial qualities as the movement Direction | Space Identify analogies that capture the same shape, positions or geometry of the movement Geometry | Shape STRUCTURAL MAPPING Creating Effective Analogies for Movement
  30. 30. 30 ACCELERATION Structural Mapping “Accelerate off the line like a jet taking-off from an aircraft carrier” ACCELERATION | JET
  31. 31. 31 VERTICAL JUMP Structural Mapping “Explode of the ground like a rocket to the sky” JUMP | ROCKET
  32. 32. 32 “RUBBER MEETS THE ROAD”
  33. 33. 33 ANALOGY LEARNING Framework 3 Steps 1.  Identify movement of interest 2.  Prioritize top 3-5 common errors 3.  Generate 1-3 analogies for each error _  Acceleration _  Absolute Speed
  34. 34. 34 ACCELERATION Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  35. 35. 35 ACCELERATION Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  36. 36. 36 ACCELERATION Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  37. 37. 37 ACCELERATION Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  38. 38. 38 ACCELERATION Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  39. 39. 39 ACCELERATION Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  40. 40. 40 ACCELERATION Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  41. 41. 41 ACCELERATION Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS “Head to heel strong as steel” “Drive your knee forward as if to shatter a pane of glass” “Explode forward like you are sprinting upstairs” “Sprint out like you are trying to catch a robber” “Jet over helicopter when you drive out” “Sprint out like you have a cheetah 2 steps behind you” “Imagine your arms are hammers and your shins are the nails”
  42. 42. 42 ABSOLUTE SPEED Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  43. 43. 43 ABSOLUTE SPEED Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  44. 44. 44 ABSOLUTE SPEED Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  45. 45. 45 ABSOLUTE SPEED Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  46. 46. 46 ABSOLUTE SPEED Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  47. 47. 47 ABSOLUTE SPEED Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  48. 48. 48 ABSOLUTE SPEED Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  49. 49. 49 ABSOLUTE SPEED Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS
  50. 50. 50 ABSOLUTE SPEED Analogy Learning Examples POSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMSPOSTURE | FRONT SIDE | BACKSIDE | ARMS “Lead with your belt buckle” “Lean into the wind or run like you are in a wind tunnel” “Sprint through knee/shin high grass” “Sprint through knee/shin high surf” “Sprint as if the ground is on fire” “Sprint as if to spin the earth back” “Bounce off the ground like a ball” “Open and close the door”
  51. 51. 51 “THE HAY IS IN THE BARN”
  52. 52. 52 “Analogies aren’t accidents, they’re arguments - arguments that, like icebergs, conceal most of their mass and power beneath the surface.” – John Pollack
  53. 53. 53 “Analogies…often trigger emotions [and are a] practical way to sort a flood of incoming data, place it within the context of our experience, and make decisions accordingly.” – John Pollack
  54. 54. 54 “If one never trusted a single analogy, how could one understand anything in this world? What, other than one’s past, can one rely on in grounding decisions that one makes when facing a new situation.” – Douglas Hofstadter and Emmanuel Sander
  55. 55. 55 “[Analogy] reveals meaning without committing the error of defining it.” – Hannah Arendt
  56. 56. 56 www.facebook.com/nwinkelman Email: nwinkelman@TeamEXOS.com http://exoslearn.ideafit.com Social Media Contact Info Website TO LEARN MORE @NickWinkelman www.linkedin.com/in/nwinkelman

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