The Golf Science Lab is kicking back off with a series on motor learning and I wanted to bring you a really important conversation about learning and practice with one of the experts in the field Dr Tim Lee.
The Golf Science Lab is dedicated to documenting what’s actually going on in the world of golf science and how it applies to learning and practicing golf.
This first season is all about motor learning and this first episode really lays the ground work for what you need to know.
Here’s an excerpt you might find interesting.
During the initial stage of practice; block practice results in better performance. So if you can imagine doing something 18 times in a row, you get better doing that much quicker than you do random practice.
If your goal is to make a quick adjustment to the task then block practice would have an advantage.
The block practice test group does very well during the initial assessment, but when they came back they did very, very poorly. In fact, they performed as if they had not ever practiced the task before.
The random group on the other hand, even though they had not improved as much during the initial stage of testing they seem to retain what they have improved very well.
The point is that block practice is good if you want to show some temporary effects but if you want long-terms benefits and transfer ability you are better off with random practice.
That analogy would be studying for an exam, if you want to retain information long enough to be relatively successful on a test and an examination, cramming is not a bad strategy. But the retention of that information will be very low.