“You’ll figure it out”. This isn’t exactly the best coaching that you can do to help someone out but in some situations it is actually appropriate. Let us not forget that some movements and strength work are just skills. They will take practice. Mastery on Day 1 is not always the case. Sometimes people just need to get some reps in and, well, they’ll figure it out. As a coach, part of making people better will be setting them up to succeed, which often means the use of proper progressions. For example, demonstrating a back flip for someone and then giving them the green light to figure it out might not be the best idea. Most people won’t ever be capable of nor should they try doing a back flip. However, soooooo many times over the years I have seen people struggle with simple split squats. I would consider the split squat a level 1 type of exercise whereas the back flip is a level 10. I’ve had people with various issues including mobility, inner ear, lack of strength, etc, really struggle to master the split squat but again, knowing that the split squat is generally level 1, eventually, they figure it out and get better. Maybe it takes a week, maybe it takes a couple of months until it really looks strong but I’ve learned that they’ll figure it out.
Understand that some movements are more coaching intensive and some are not. Mastering the basics should be most people’s focus, especially at the onset. Just getting lots of reps in without too much risk or information overload will be highly beneficial. Then move on to more challenging things which will be easier to “figure out” given the stronger and more stable base you’ve created for yourself or your client with this basic work. Oddly enough this sounds just like, well, a progression. The key is knowing what movements to learn first to build your base without trying to do too much.
– Mike Baltren