Constraints led or is there more? Back to the question.
Can we say, that the sportive action in this picture shows elements of differencial learning in tennis? Constraints change seeing, hearing, time, speed, field size, target, emotion,…
(Thx Mark O Sullivan for the picture, Mark is doing a wonderful job at AIK Stockholm and is writing about constraints led coaching, childrens rights in sports and more on the blog „Player development project„)
Wolfgang Schöllhorn, who has thought and researched about the best way of learning skills in sports, is helping me to understand the differences between Differential learning (DL) and the Constraints Led Approach (CLA) fixing one’s eye on the picture above.
„This is a nice example for explaining the difference of constraints led approach and differencial learning 😉 . Here you see extraordinary constraints in order to feel what you should not do in future (variant of contrast learning). But this only would become differencial learning if the boundary conditions would change next time, e.g. if the „other side“ would change the flying objects (size or speed) or if this guy would change his glasses, the mask, the racket, the technique, the target … next time. In differencial learning it is rather about the rate of change of boundary conditions, it is less about the stressful constraining situations that should be avoided next time. ;- ) “
find another word to describe what we do in our exercises in tennis? I think, that the way of differential learning (DL) is a better way for learners and players to develop technique and tactics in a sport like tennis. Still tennis coaching is dominated by methodical traditionalism and explicit learning.
Wolfgang Schöllhorn, scientist at Johannes-Gutenberg-University at Mainz, after long research about motor learning, has written an nice article about the history of nonlinear pedagogy und the constraints led approach (CLA). And why they are different to DL.
In this blog I use nonlinear pedagogy and CLA very often. They are following systemic theory and implicit learning. Making this real on courts, would be a milestone. But Schöllhorn has researched about motor learning and discovered, that there is a more effectiv way to learn. He called this Differential Learning (DL). In this article from 2019 he describes, why CLA is still dominated by the idea of leading the learner and that the coaches goal is still to bring him to a nonautonomous goal.
I think, Schöllhorn is right. This means in consequence: I have to overthink the terms I use to describe what my players do in trainings. Constraints can be understood as a term for changing courtsize, material, partners, tasks, emotions,…. but not from a pedagogical view and in distinction to CLA.
Following the principles of differential learning and the constraints led approach, we can change the constraints without repeating them the next practice. Regular variation without repetition and the trust in new studies about motor learning gives the coaches and the players more than a handful of various drills. This one is about changing constraints by starting from unusual points in the tennis field. This requires adaptation to all players and opens doors to new solutions of game situations.
Playing the game with rules outside the rules brings players in a situation where they have to solve problems outside the manifested behaviour. We can manipulate court size, rules, time, counting, context of the game and other settings surrounding the game. This improves tactics and skills. In this double drill players have to adapt the direction of the service, the return in a double, the netplay and particularly in the teamwork collusion between server and netplayer.
This is from Nick Jacques Tennis. Nice ideas for a constraints led approach (CLA). This already shows the difference between CLA and differential learning (DL). In the CLA the intention and the plan for the development of the skills is an idea of the coach („avoiding backswing“). In a DL approach the coach also offers different situations (like those in this video). But the solution is in the responsibility of the player, not in the responsibility of the coach!
Both approaches are implicit, but there is an important difference in the attitude to the learning athlet. While the coach in the CLA drill has a goal (backswing), the DL coach knows and intends nothing. The system „player“ is a black box and there is no expectation in the long term development of individual skills. The examples in Nicks CLA are in DL only one possible solution for the motion and will not be repeated.
Thx to Nick for the nice ideas ?. I love his quote: „I have no influence over this as I am still with very little noise from me.“
“ 3 constraint led approach drills that have helped reduce the size of my students take back. Lillian has previously been taught a large loop on her take back which has isolated her upper body from her lower body, making it very hard for her to adapt to the many different balls she would need to cope with in a match situation. Lillian has made great improvements on her coordination, here are a few key exercises that have helped her progress. Note how Lillian is intrinsically motivated as the exercises engages her and draws out the effort, you can see I have no influence over this as I am still with very little noise from me ? „
Constraints led approach (CLA) drill to improve skills ant tactics in standard situations. Using different balls (from red to yellow). You can also mix old and new balls. Pears and apples weiterlesen →
Changing constraints and using non-linear pedagogy for skill development.
Changing constraints like court size, balls, rules, equipment, court surface, interference, improves the evolution of your players game. Working differencial with regularly changing constraints without repetition gives players the chance to find creative solutions for unexpected situations of the game. Setting this in an playful approach makes motor learning and skill development more creativ and stable. 4 fruits weiterlesen →
In einem systemdynamischen und non-linearen Lernansatz geht es darum, über die Veränderung der Rahmenbedingungen und der Aufgabenstellungen den Spieler*innen eine individuelle Entwicklung von Technik und Taktik zu ermöglichen. In diesem auch „constraints-led-approach“ genannten Zugang fordern neue Situationen neues Denken und neue Lösungen heraus. Dieser Ansatz ist nach dem aktuellen Stand der wissenschaftlichen Forschung effektiver und nachhaltiger als der traditionelle methodische Ansatz in dem der Coach der Experte für die Lösungswege ist und diese vorgibt (v.a. bei der Technikentwicklung).
Das differenzielle Lernen (nach Wolfgang Schöllhorn) geht da deutlich weiter und überlässt den Spieler*innen die Suche nach individuellen Lösungen für neue Aufgabenstellungen. Die Rahmenbedingungen werden ständig verändert und nicht wiederholt (ständige Variation). Dabei können auch „Fehler“ eingebaut werden. Dies entspricht einer konsequenten Umsetzung systemtheorischen Denkens in dem der Coach vollständig auf die Selbstorganisationsfähigkeit der Spieler*innen vertraut. Neue Erkenntnisse aus der Kreativitätsforschung im Sport unterstützen dieses Denken.