A curse. No goat, No babe, it's actually your fault...
Friday, 3 / 4 / 16
The curse of knowledge:
A few months ago I was having dinner with a friend who introduced me to this concept. I IMMEDIATELY “got it” because I live it every single day but had no idea it was “a thing”. The Curse of Knowledge is a cognitive bias that leads better-informed parties to find it extremely difficult to think about problems from the perspective of lesser-informed parties. There is an example attached to the link about a tailor making a dress and the consumer not understanding the price. The individual can’t fully grasp all that goes into the process. The time, craftsmanship, measure twice cut once, fabric choice, etc. I do feel that there may some similarities to this occupation but that’s not why I’m writing. I am choosing to bring this topic up and to appeal to coaches, friends, neighbors and citizens...
Life as a Strength Coach
In my day to day life I see a lot of people. I repeat myself A LOT and having patience is a huge part of this job. ya - sometimes it's groundhog day.
Making assumptions (anywhere in life really) can lead to poor results, frustrating sessions or potential injuries. To give you an example this week I worked with the WNE Football team. When you mention a “football player” Most people immediately envision a big, strong and healthy person. One would also assume these athletes “know their way around a weight room”. No, they don’t! They have grown up their entire lives with people assuming that because they play a physically demanding game they’re strong therefor they know what they’re doing in a weight room. WRONG! Don’t get me wrong I am not attacking the WNE football team. I love working with these guys and their work ethic is unmatched. My point is that each of them need and deserve to be given the time and attention necessary to understand the movement pattern.
“Today we are going to bench press.” They’ve seen a bench press preformed, they’ve benched a few times themselves and still there is an enormous amount of players in this category/sport that don’t do it right. What should be the primary mover? What is the proper range of motion? Where should your feet be paced? Elbows in or elbows out? Coach, what’s the difference if I do it my way? A good Strength Coach spends the day not just telling but instructing. Not just instructing but coaching. And not leaving it at coaching but educating is what will make the long term impact and results for their players.
Life as a Personal Coach
Here is a better example. The other day we are in the office (at CPC) talking about a client who had just starting coming to us. There was a history of stability problems for this person and pain in the knees. We did an FMS and looked at some mobility aspects. Come to discover it was as simple as a really tight soleus (calf muscle) causing the unstable walking, squatting and lunge. Smitty (Mike Smith) looked at me following the session and said “how can this have gone on so long and someone not know trigger point? That was a simple fix”! At CPC we use Trigger Point with everyone. We understand MCT and how it applies to every single individual and in different ways it does. We completed out training in 2013 and almost 100% of our subscriber base does MCT on their own. It is baffling for us to think that another professional doesn’t know how to execute MCT and teach it to their clients. So, in response to Smitty I had to remind him that if he were to think back 3 years ago, before we all received training, would he have known how to treat the soleus? Would the solution really be that easy to him and are you looking at the situation with bias? The answer, no! I am in no way digging on Mike in this example I am just fortunate enough that I saw it from this perspective at that time.
And being educated on nutritional information...
You don’t get enough water. What is enough? Eight, 8oz glasses of water right? No, that’s not good enough anymore. The best "quick" advice is to take your body weight in pounds and divide it in half. That is the number of ounces of water you should consume in a day at minimum. Now if you are an active individual you have to assume sweat rate and atmospheric conditions. Do you have a high protein diet? Is it from plant sources, animal sources or powders? Do you take any supplements? So what if I am a 160 pound male who trains/exercises 5 days a week and eats an animal protein rich diet? Answer - He may need to consume 118-130 ounces of water a day. That much?! Yes, that much! What do you mean you didn’t know any of that? – kidding. Basic everyday conversation to me but that may be a “WTF moment” to you if it’s a first. Not thinking for a second that for proper immune function, intestinal health, muscle contractions and cognitive response you would have to drink that much water! yup - that's accurate.
And then there is just life
The examples of how the Curse of Knowledge effects almost all facets of our life won’t take you much time to think of or come up with a few. Go ahead - think of one.
Seriously. Think of one.
We're all guilty.
In the beginning of this blog I mentioned that I wanted to introduce this topic to my fellow coaches, friends, neighbors and citizens.I am NOT going to make this a political conversation or allude to how I stand on the presidential race. I would like to appeal to the masses as you start to make your own decisions though. Please do your own research and become informed. When you speak to someone with a difference of opinion take the time to discuss, not argue.
Maybe you have arrived at your conclusion because you are privy to a piece of information the other individual is not. OR MAYBE they are privy to something you are not or a point of view you haven't considered. Don’t be afraid to be wrong or for your point of view to be changed. It doesn’t make you weak. On the contrary in makes you much stronger to be open minded.
Use the knowledge you have to HELP someone else instead of INSISTING on being right. The more well informed we all are the better as a whole we will be.
Knowledge is a tool – not a curse… Unless your close minded and quick to judge.