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Using GIFs to train athletes

The other day I was breaking down film with my athletes and a thought came to mind - why not use GIFs to visually train athletes! I am a HUGE believer in visual preparation and mental training, and the idea of using GIFs seems to be a great way we could teach our athletes the movement, techniques, routines, etc. of long and triple jumpers.

GIFs play in loops over and over again; and in a minutes worth of time an athletes watching could see as many as 15-20 jumps depending on the length of the video!

I know many of you probably don't believe in the visual side of training, but I'd like to take a moment to try to persuade you. In my time as a long and triple jump coach I've seen countless siblings jump with similar results. On my current roster I have a jumper that had two brothers that jumped prior to her, and each of them had great form when jumping. The sibling that is currently on the team was given the benefit of watching her two older brothers jump for years, and is now reaping the benefits. She understands the jumps better than she knows because she's seen so many long and triple jumps in person over the years. I know many of you will simply state that genetics are to play here, but I could counter with a large number of instances where siblings were NOTHING alike. Genetics only goes so far...

Showing athletes video and/or GIFs won't be detrimental in any way so give it a try!

Here are a few other examples I found on www.giphy.com:

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