In my last article . . .
. . . we discussed how to perfect our approach to practice. Today I’d like to take a look at how other champions approach their training. Let’s start with some of their more eccentric rituals.
- Michael Jordan wore his University of North Carolina shorts under his uniform in every single game of his legendary career.
- Serena Williams bounces the ball five times before her first serve, then twice before her second serve.
- New York Mets reliever Steven John "Turk" Wendell jumped over the baselines when walking to the mound and brushed his teeth between innings.
- Mia Hamm, fames soccer player, always ties her right over her left when she ties shoes.
- Hall of Famer Wade Boggs, former third baseman for the Red Sox, earned the nickname "Chicken Man" for eating chicken before each game. He also drew the word Chai (Hebrew word for life) in the dirt before taking his turn at bat.
These are just a few rituals by some very well-known athletes. Most are based on superstitions, yet give a degree of comfort when under pressure. But what other rituals do the champions use to become consistent and successful?
Besides nutrition and cross training which many dancers now use to support their overall fitnesshow one practices their specific sport is the universally acknowledged main component for success.
1. Warm-up- Always start with a warm up that is preferable solo.
2. Have a plan! – organize your practice in a structured way and with a specific intention.
3. Details- Develop a dedication to details – don’t gloss over the minutiae.
4. Self- responsibility- learning to apply self-regulated learning skills.
All four applications above can incorporate HLT.
1. Warm-Up- Review forward and back walks on the HLT video before doing your warm up and warm up solo before joining your partner.
2. Plan – Don’t just arbitrarily run-through your dances. Have an intention. Decide what dance you are going to concentrate on and review the HLT specific dance before starting your run-through.
3. Details- Yes - we need to build stamina through repetition, but don’t forget to spend time analyzing the details that will make your dancing more effective and efficient. For example- watch the HLT proper use of the foot – it will give you more speed and balance.
4. Self reliance- make it your responsibility to learn- don’t entirely depend on your teachers or coaches. Be pro-active. Study the HLT tapes. Does your foot work or leg action look like the champions?
* In conclusion, technical preparation such as HLT, the Hip Lift Technique is the foundation for a successful performance. A good result is a composite of effective technique and physical preparation.
Good luck and remember to practice like a Champion!