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holistic vs linear teaching - Page 6

post #151 of 168
Thank you for that post. I have but one minor question.

Originally Posted by joan heaton
The skills of skiing are, for the most part, categorized as both predictable and unpredictable stimuli ‘open’. Therefore, ski teachers should create learning environments that offer both predictable and unpredictable stimuli.
From what I've understood, and that may be wrong, skiing is an example of a sport that has an "open" skill set -- movements are modified as terrain and snow conditions vary.

Gymnastics however, is an example of a closed sport. The equipement does not change size/shape or move around -- a gymnasts movements don't have to compensate for their changing environment.

I'm a bit confused. Could you elaborate on what skills in skiing we would consider being "closed"?

post #152 of 168
Big E

You are right on the money! No confusion in anything you said here.

As you did with the gymnastics example; think of other examples of open/perceptual skills and closed/habitual skills, it helps you figure out on your own which is which. Think about tennis, the serve is closed and everything else is open. In basketball, the foul shot is closed and everything else is open. So, think of skiing, open, open, open.

So now, take the next step: think about how the characteristics of a skill influence the way you present it. Would you teach the serve in tennis the same way that you teach a forehand in tennis? I hope your answer is no. So if the skills of skiing are, indeed, open; than how does your teaching take into consideration the characteristics of the skills of skiing?
post #153 of 168
OK, here's what I do:

1) Skills are first taught on an easy to negotiate hill. The unpredictable nature of the terrain does not detract from the skill. The skill is introduced as if it's "closed".

2) Once having sufficient grasp of the skill, students are exposed to more varied terrain, where the same/similar drills are performed. The student requires greater perception of cause, effect and response while learning to manage the new skill on the new terrain. The skill begins to become more "open".

3) Mileage -- the student must "buy in" to the idea that they'll own the move after 1000 repetitions. The move which at the beginning felt odd becomes automatic provided that they continue to practice it.

Hey! This is the road from cognition, through association to autonomy!

I'd venture to say that using the TEL model in the cognitive and associative learning stages will provide the student with internal feedback loops that will make the transition to the autonomous stage possible. It's just a matter of reliving their "concrete experience" in a changing environment over and over and over again.

Thank you very very much for bringing out that connection Joan!
post #154 of 168
OK Ed!

What you described is an example of beginning your teaching sequence of an open skill using a ‘closed’ learning environment and in #2 and 3#, you gradually ‘opened’ the characteristics of the learning environment to accommodate the openness of the skill.
In fact, this was an assignment I used to give to my students at the college. Describe five leaning environments that will lead a student from a ‘closed’ to an ‘open’ learning environment.

So, that’s one way. Don’t stop there. There are ways to start right from the beginning with an ‘open’ learning environment. Think about it!!! Both work, both do the job. The point to remember in your example is to be sure that you do indeed, ‘open’ the learning environment.

post #155 of 168
Sorry, I meant BigE
post #156 of 168
Proprioceptors are NOT associated with the sense of touch (feeling).

The sense of touch IS an input into the body's proprioception.
This is either contridictory, or you are splitting a fine hair.

QUOTE]You said people [/b] feel [/b] through their feet. Well quite simply - some don't . for example: Diabetics are known for the diabetic periphereal neuropathies that remove sense of touch from these areas. hence they do not compensate when they get increased pressure in an area & can get quite nasty foot infections (want a gory picture ask someone to show you a diabetic callous that is gangrenous under the callous - so you pare the callous away to reveal infected tissue)
Some have ankle/foot injuries that result in loss of proprioceptive nerves but retain sense of touch.[/quote]

I know of some very good diabetic skiers and in some cases ski more propreoceptically than non-diabetic skiers. I also think that advanced gangrenous callous in a diabetic is an extreme case and can't be used as a generalation. To say you have no connection between your feet (feeling) and brain may be true cognitavly, but there must be more than you are aware of. If you read nolo's post, she describes how she is a feeler very well. It takes time to develope.

You did NOT explain what happens when people cannot do as YOU expect. (ie I cannot learn to have proprioceptors hooked to cerebellum just as a diabetic with peripereal neuropathy cannot learn to feel their feet again)

Or do such souls not deserve to learn to ski?
I said that awareness if the first step and not all feelings are propreceptic, many are sensations and becomming a feeler can be both or either.
It takes a lot of time on the skis each year to be able to isolate how the different muscle groups are working and a lot of watching to be able to isolate movements in other skiers. If it were easy, it would be called snowboarding.
post #157 of 168
Ron, there really is a difference between our propriorception, and our propreoceptors.

Propreoception is simply our bodies awareness of it's position in space. It encompasses all our bodies senses including our visio-vestibular system.

Propreoceptors are nerve endings in our muscles, tendons, and joints. They contirbute to awareness of muscle stretch, joint position and pressure, ect.

It is easy to get them confused. It took some studying for me to understand the difference. Later, RicB.
post #158 of 168
Joan, I'm trying to get a handle on your use of the terms open and closed wiht respect to learning. I have to admit this (the terms) is new to me. Taking this out on the snow, are you saying that anything that isolates learning to specific outcome is closed and everythnig else is open?

What comes to my mind are tasks that isolate a skill, as opposed to say introducing movements, which leaves the student free to feel, control, and interpret the outcome. With appropiate guidance of course.

I find myself teaching alot without specific outcomes, but more towards changing movement patterns, all tied to understanding the sensations of the ski/snow interaction, and our intentions.

Still not sure if I have a good grasp of open/closed with respect to learning a physical sport. Later, RicB.
post #159 of 168
Thank you for the clairfication Ric B.
post #160 of 168
Originally Posted by Ron White

I know of some very good diabetic skiers and in some cases ski more propreoceptically than non-diabetic skiers. I also think that advanced gangrenous callous in a diabetic is an extreme case and can't be used as a generalation. To say you have no connection between your feet (feeling) and brain may be true cognitavly, but there must be more than you are aware of. If you read nolo's post, she describes how she is a feeler very well. It takes time to develope.

How much diabetic periphereal neuropathy do these diabetic skiers have? If is reasonable then they do not "feel". (sense touch) That is why these diabetics with periphereal neuropathy develop gangrenous callouses so easily - they do not feel the pressure that tells them to offload that part of the foot (or pain either) so they keep walking on the sore part.

Elderly people tend to lose proprioceptor input - they then become unsteady on feet. Inserting vibrating insoles in shoes helps increase the input they receive & so helps them to improve balance feedback.

Ummm - well actually from what everyone tells me I have considerably LESS than I was ever aware of. My friends & I had always assumed that I was low range normal. I am told I have no proprioceptor input. The various physios/doctors etc that find this intriguing play with my toes/fingers etc.... they all start saying "Oh it can't be THAT bad... they all finish with... "oh that is unusual .... it is NOT that common to be missing proprioceptor input body wide - but it appears that I am....

Conversely I have an acute awareness of my sense of touch - & I can assure you that it has nothing to do with proprioceptors or propriocetive nerves. Sensation (feeling!) is carried in a different set of nerves - hence I can still have such a sense of touch with no input from proprioceptors.

It is not so uncommon to lose proprioceptor input from a region - the nerves can get damaged. (Ask ant - she says her ankles are). That feeling of being unable to "trust" a knee after injury even when it has strength again is due to that. Without input from the proprioceptors you are unsure exactly what the knee will do when you try to move - so it feels "unsafe" .
post #161 of 168
Originally Posted by Joan Heaton

Second - ASSOCIATIVE STAGE: Students are making associations between the correct responses and what it feels like to perform a particular movement.
Third - AUTONOMOUS STAGE: students are able to process information easily with minimal interference from other on-going activities. There is minimal conscious control over the movement

Sort of sounds suspiciously like what I was trying to tell you I do when I learn movements....

Understand FIRST.... feel SECOND.... then the doing & refining.....
Does NOT MATCH your insistence that I must FEEL first in order to learn....

So now what do you & Ron have to say about this insistence that we must feel first if we are to learn your way? Can you now see that there may be validity in allowing some of us the leeway to learn in our own preferred learning order? That in fact for some of us the learning proceeds far better in an order that YOU did not choose FIRST! Allow us the freedom to learn as best suits us - forget the defined process - it smacks too strongly of forcing us into the box you have already labelled.

Given any reasonably interested & aware instructor I learn well - when you consider that I should struggle a LOT to learn movements I do very well. My biggest problem comes with those who INSIST that I learn the way they have been doing it (for 20 years! grrr!) rather than simply paying attention to me as the student. I am not them -nor any of their other previous students. I am me - teach ME!
post #162 of 168

The term ‘open’ is also referred to as perceptual and the term ‘closed’ as habitual. The characteristics of a particular skill is one of the many things a teacher considers when creating various learning environments for a class. As I said in an earlier post, you would not create the same learning environment when teaching a serve in tennis as you would when teaching a forehand in tennis. One requires a constant, predictable learning environment in which repetition can occur; the other requires a changing environment, which offers both predictable and unpredictable stimuli. The skills of skiing are, for the most part, categorized as having both predictable and unpredictable stimuli. Therefore, we can safely put the skills of skiing in the open/perceptual continuum. Knowing all this, we try to set up the best conditions for learning in our classes and the learning environments we create in our lessons should reflect this information.

Let’s consider some of the stimuli that we deal with when we ski: snow conditions, the difference in the trail from one turn to the next, other skiers/riders, the requirements of each turn, etc. So as we ski, we perceive all these various stimuli and we make the decisions to do what it takes to ski each particular situation in which we find ourselves. These are skills that need to be addressed and practiced DURING a lesson. Do students get to practice/ski with other skiers somewhere around them? Are they placed in an environment in which ‘they’ figure out the requirements of a turn in various situations?

Many ski instructors begin with a very controlled situation. The basics of the skill are learned and the instructor starts adding variable stimuli to the learning environment to simulate the actual situation in which the student will ski when s/he is not in class. It is a disservice if this does not get done.

There are those instructors who, right from the get go, create learning environments that simulate the real world of skiing. Both do the job; it just depends on the choice and skills of the teacher, as s/he perceives her/himself, and how s/he reads him/her class.
post #163 of 168
Hold on, DISSKI, you are mixing apples and oranges here as you mix together your learning style and the stages of learning.
A learning style is the cognitive mode of a learner; it is a person's preferred technique in approaching learning. It is the way a person processes information; the way a person's sensory, perceptual, memorial, decision-making, and feedback mechanisms operate. The learner’s motivation, previous training, readiness, age, and ability to process information influence this “way”.
The Stages of Learning information I have offered can be found in Robert Kerr’s book Psychomotor Learning. In this book, the learning process itself is divided into three stages. It describes three levels that an individual moves through as learning takes place. So everyone, regardless of his/her learning STYLE, moves through these levels of the learning process.
post #164 of 168

Conversely I have an acute awareness of my sense of touch - & I can assure you that it has nothing to do with proprioceptors or propriocetive nerves. Sensation (feeling!) is carried in a different set of nerves - hence I can still have such a sense of touch with no input from proprioceptors.
People tend to adapt when they have to. Your sence of touch will serve you well. You don't have to be a proprioceptic skier to be a feeler. Your sensations are what you need to be aware of. Even if you are not a predominently a feeler in your learning type, your sensations are enough to have a concrete experience. Maybe TEL Model is not for you.
post #165 of 168
You might be right, Ron. The TEL model only has a chance with those folks who are willing to take that "leap of faith" we keep talking about.
post #166 of 168
Thanks Joan. Perceptual and habitual are what I needed to read. It's good to develope an understanding in a more clinical way as to what we do intuitively as we gain expereince and effectiveness as we teach. Later, Ricb.
post #167 of 168
Prompted by the excellent discussion on this thread, I resurrected an article I published in The Professional Skier in 1996 called "The Elements of Style" and posted it in the Premium Articles Section of this site, which is available to Supporters.
post #168 of 168

Holistic vs Linear

Perhaps during the defining goals and objective part of your lesson planning you could share an overview and back it up with the linear details if needed. Doers and visual learner might not need the details but others like yourself might need them before making the commitment to try new things.
Chosing a presentation (learning/teaching) style depends on the group but more commonly it has more to do with your learning bias and preferred teaching style. All of the teaching styles would work but I would define the task first, then use guided discovery to allow lateral and experiential learning. Then I would follow up with some problem solving activities to check for understanding and facilitate customization of the rest of the lesson. It also might work to use Command, Task, and Reciprocal activities.
However,I try to use some form of problem solving during each activity and definitely during my summary because it is more student centered and solicits feedback from each student. It also helps me sell the follow up lesson idea.
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