Every athlete has a different way of performing the same task/movement.
Baring this in mind, it´s important to understand that although there are a number of ways of performing the same movement (skills), there are requirements (capacities) every player must be have in order to execute the task in question with the highest level of quality possible.
In other words:
· Skills: Task/movement
· Capacities: Set of technical and physical pre-requirements associated with a task, and that must be acquired by the player so that he can carry out the task in question.
Taking by example the forehand movement:
· Skill: Forehand
o Velocity (to quickly hit the ball)
o Strength (to generate the necessary force to hit the ball)
o Coordination (necessary to have proper footwork)
Taking all this information into consideration and looking at the image below we can conclude that to every task/skill there are a number of capacities that need to be developed in order to improve the level of our performance in that same task!
What does this mean? It means that when we are structuring our training programs we need to give as much importance to the development of the capacities as we do to the development of the skills, because, as we have explained above, they are interdependent!
Why is it important to distinguish Skills and Capacities?
There are moments in the development of our athletes where they can´t get better at a specific skill, no matter how much they practice it. We try different approaches to improve it, but somehow the player just doesn´t get better!
In such times, it´s important for us to have the ability of making a precise evaluation in order to understand if the problem of the athlete is on the task/skill or in the capacities necessary to perform that skill at a high level.
How can we do that? Find out in our next article!