Special Olympics British Columbia British Columbia

Did you know that better sport technique = better health?

20 November 2017

By Jacques Thibault, Special Olympics BC Sport Consultant

Jacques Thibault, an internationally recognized training and speed skating expert with a Master’s degree in science, works with Special Olympics BC athletes and coaches to help empower them to be their very best.

Now what does being able to swim with better technique, skate using crossovers, or good basketball dribbling have to do with health?

Being able to perform a sport with basic technique affects the amount of physical work during a session. A good swimmer can cover many more pool lengths than someone who has trouble swimming, and a good basketball dribbler will dribble the ball many times more and be part of the play much more than someone with limited skills.

It is not surprising to observe that in many instances, athletes with basic sport skills are often in best shape and have lower body fat. Moving more during practices and covering more distance is always a sign of energy consumption, of higher calories burning.

Getting better technique requires focus and effort during each practice and keeping track of personal bests. If a track and field athlete can only run 200 metres, it is possible to slowly work to run 250m and then 300m to eventually run all distances. So we are not talking about performance personal bests, but basic skills personal objectives.

Better basic skills are possible to achieve for a large number of Special Olympics athletes, and the end result is totally worth it.

Jacques Thibault (centre) with SOBC athletes Paige Norton and Matthew Williams.

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