Motor Learning, Podcast

Best Practice Routines to Get You Tournament Ready w/ Dr Ed Coughlan

Today we’re talking about the best ideas to get you tournament ready with better practice routines, habits, and mindsets with Dr Ed Coughlan. We’ll even dive into some actions you need to take during practice rounds to make sure your tournament ready and optimized for your best performance.


QUESTION: Are there two separate types of practice? One to develop skills, and a second to prepare for a tournament?

Where I’m at now as a coach in 2018, I would like to think no.

If you asked me that question 15 years ago, I probably would’ve said yes.

For me, practice, for whatever you’re practicing, is preparation for competition. The practice you do before competition should have that same feeling, “I’m preparing to win here. I’m preparing to give my best effort on this day.”

There needs to be a purpose behind every single thing you’re doing because it’s about making the boat go faster. If you’re doing it for the sake of doing it, then the boat’s not going as fast as it possibly can.

There needs to be purpose behind every single thing you’re doing…

Dr Edward Coughlan

As a Skill Acquisition Specialist I empower athletes across all sporting dsiciplines to perform their best in competition. Ineffective practice is why most athletes fall short of peak performance. Practice MUST transfer and Skill Acquisition is the route to achieving that. Skill Acquisition is the perfect blend of Coaching Science, Sport Science and Sport Psychology. All three domains are in constant flow during a session as I connect with an athlete to unlock their potential.

My route to Skill Acquisition started over 20 years ago as a coach and accelerated during my degree in Sport Science at Dublin City University (DCU) and my PhD in Skill Acquisition at the Research Institute for Sport & Exercise Science at Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU). I have studied under some of the world’s leading Skill Acquisition specialists; Dr Rick Shuttleworth, Dr Paul Ford and Prof. Mark Williams.

In Liverpool I further developed my skills in performance analysis, eye-tracking technology, video analysis and skills testing. I had the opportunity to work with the EIS, GB Shooting, UEFA, Chelsea FC, St Helen’s RLFC, Scottish Curling and many more. I lecture in Sport Science in the Cork Institute of Technology (CIT). I am also a guest lecturer in Skill Acquisition at University College Dublin (UCD).


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Founder and chief curator of the Golf Science Lab. Documenting what's going on in the world of research and beyond that can help you play your best golf on the golf course (when it counts). Join the movement of researched based coaching over trusting beliefs and what worked for one person a few decades ago. Follow on Twitter