Is learning facts the same process as developing a new skill?
If it is, then (perhaps) academic pedagogical principles transfer to sports coaching.
But if skill development is a different type of “learning”, does the coach need other techniques?
Now, I currently have little to base this feeling beyond my own experience of learning. And I have to admit that my own learning might well have been sub-optimal!
But learning facts (school, university) always felt very different to developing a new (sport) skill.
I would listen to a lecture and take notes, then re-write the notes, refer to a text book for clarification, perhaps, then re-write and refine my notes to capture just the essential facts.
Facts for reproduction (e.g. in an exam) were reduced to the minimum, and stored, mentally, for retrieval. A set of virtual cue cards, perhaps.
(Back in the days when I had to give formal presentations, I’d do exactly the same — draft a speech, then reduce it to headlines & bullet points on actual, physical, cue cards; my headlines might double as the text for a PowerPoint slide deck.)
A new skill would inspire me to practice it, perhaps mentally, first, then in private, then in the nets — if the skill was robust enough, I’d try it in a match, then develop it further, or drop it, depending on how well it worked.
“Skills” expand to fit the context. The basic movements (the “facts”) are only the beginning of application.
So closer to the model of learning proposed by Whitehead — romance (discovering a new skill and wanting to learn it), precision (learning how it works), generalisation (putting that skill into the matchday repertoire.
Is learning facts the same as developing a (movement) skill?
Maybe this starts to crystallise my question about the applicability of “academic” learning studies to sports learning.
For any study, ask “what is the experimental end-point?” Is it short-term reproduction of facts, or long-term understanding?
For sport skill acquisition, the latter seems preferable. So I am wary of the relevance to skill development of an academic study that reports on short-term retention of facts.