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Discuss the differences between skill, ability and technique and explain how you would structure practices to enhance these components of fitness.

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Introduction

Discuss the differences between skill, ability and technique and explain how you would structure practices to enhance these components of fitness. Skill is an athlete's ability to choose and perform the right techniques at the right time, successfully, regularly and with a minimum of effort. Athletes use their skill to achieve athletic objectives e.g. sprinting 10.0 seconds in a 100m race. Skill is acquired and therefore has to be learned. Techniques are the basic movements of any sport or event e.g. at the block start in a 100m race is a technique. We combine a number of techniques into a pattern of movement e.g. the triple jump-running and then the hop, skip and jump phases. Ability is the make up of an athlete which we inherit from our parents. Abilities underpin and contribute to skills. They can be essentially perceptual, essentially motor or a combination of both. Most abilities to do with action are a combination and are preferred to as psychomotor abilities. ...read more.

Middle

If you are of average height, strong, good co-ordination and have an abundance of fast twitch fibres in your legs then you have the natural ability to be a sprinter. So in gymnastics, a person would have to have the natural ability i.e. be quite flexible and would have to learn the correct techniques before they can actually perform a certain skill. A skill would be doing a front flip. To structure practices to enhance your performance for agility is very difficult as you are born with your abilities. However an Australian sports psychologist has found ways of improving hand/eye co-ordination by doing some special eye exercises. These exercises are static exercises e.g. passing drills in hockey. Technique is very important for an athlete. Technique is often confused with skill but they are different things. In order to perform a particular skill in any sport we must learn the required technique and for the technique to be mastered we must have abilities: Ability + Technique = Skill To enhance skill, ...read more.

Conclusion

The other practice is massed practice sessions which involves a continuous sessions with no breaks. Mainly for experienced performers with a high level of fitness and mostly associated with fixed practice. This allows skills to be tested under fatigue conditions and they receive intrinsic feedback where the performer feels the difference within them. Circuit training is an example for a shooting session in basketball. Other aspects are used such as Pacing. It is where externally paced skills can be learned and perfected as self-paced skills and then gradually external pacing can be introduced. Technique will be developed without time pressures. Once the correct technique can be reproduced without difficulty, external pacing influences can then be introduced. Serial/Discrete skills are low organised skills that can be practised in parts and then linking together but preferably progressively, this allowing links to be developed between each part. An example would be to do a handstand, forward roll, cart wheel in gymnastics as it is a link. ...read more.

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