The mime action

02/02/2022 |

“We are that which we do on repetition,” said Aristotle.

Repetition is an important key to faster/better development at both technical and tactical levels. But how can you as a player, and how can you as a coach/trainer, integrate this into your training sessions? How do you get the most out of your practice?

The Mime action

First of all a short explanation of what the Mime-action is: It is performing a technical or tactical movement dry. That is, without the ball being involved. For example, a service pass or a transition from defense to offense, but without a volley.

You may have noticed a high jumper practicing the rhythm of the run-up briefly dry before his jump. Or that a tennis player, after a wrong forehand, rehearses how the stroke should have been executed. Or that a golfer, before his put, rehearses dry, but just off the ball. That is mime training. You practice a movement without the ball. But how do you do that during, say, a serve-pass drill?

We know the drill: There is a line of servers and a line of passers. But there is always a moment when there are players on hold. Instead of just watching, they could dry join their teammate. So how would you play the ball underarms if you were being served? Don’t just mimic the movement in your head, but give it a physical expression.

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Application in training

As a coach, you can encourage this behavior by instructing those in the waiting area to join in. Also, when you have passed, you can repeat the movement again dry, but as the movement should have been. This way you get the double charge and repetitions. This will speed up a player’s development. Add them up: 1 mime pass, 1 real pass, 1 mime pass. That’s 3 repetitions instead of 1. And it might make you improve 3 times faster. And are you afraid of being embarrassed? Think of the leaps you are making in your development. And if you as a coach/trainer integrate this into your training and expect everyone to mime, the players are never alone. The Americans and Brazilians have been doing this this way for a while, they haven’t really gotten any worse….

Author: Dennis Veth, VolleyballXL

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