Kinematic and kinetic improvements associated with action observation facilitated learning of the power clean in Australian footballers Academic Article uri icon


  • This study investigated the effectiveness of action observation (AO) on facilitating learning of the power clean technique (kinematics) compared with traditional strength coaching methods and whether improvements in performance (kinetics) were associated with an improvement in lifting technique. Fifteen subjects (age, 20.9 ± 2.3 years) with no experience in performing the power clean exercise attended 12 training and testing sessions over a 4-week period. Subjects were assigned to 2 matched groups, based on preintervention power clean performance and performed 3 sets of 5 repetitions of the power clean exercise at each training session. Subjects in the traditional coaching group (TC; n = 7) received the standard coaching feedback (verbal cues and physical practice), whereas subjects in the AO group (n = 8) received similar verbal coaching cues and physical practice but also observed a video of a skilled model before performing each set. Kinematic data were collected from video recordings of subjects who were fitted with joint center markings during testing, whereas kinetic data were collected from a weightlifting analyzer attached to the barbell. Subjects were tested before intervention, at the end of weeks 2 and 3, and at after intervention at the end of week 4. Faster improvements (3%) were observed in power clean technique with AO-facilitated learning in the first week and performance improvements (mean peak power of the subject's 15 repetitions) over time were significant (p < 0.001). In addition, performance improvement was significantly associated (R = 0.215) with technique improvements. In conclusion, AO combined with verbal coaching and physical practice of the power clean exercise resulted in significantly faster technique improvements and improvement in performance compared with traditional coaching methods.

publication date

  • 2014