Acute effects of verbal feedback on upper-body performance in elite athletes

J Strength Cond Res. 2011 Dec;25(12):3282-7. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e3182133b8c.


Argus, CK, Gill, ND, Keogh, JWL, and Hopkins, WG. Acute effects of verbal feedback on upper-body performance in elite athletes. J Strength Cond Res 25(12): 3282-3287, 2011-Improved training quality has the potential to enhance training adaptations. Previous research suggests that receiving feedback improves single-effort maximal strength and power tasks, but whether quality of a training session with repeated efforts can be improved remains unclear. The purpose of this investigation was to determine the effects of verbal feedback on upper-body performance in a resistance training session consisting of multiple sets and repetitions in well-trained athletes. Nine elite rugby union athletes were assessed using the bench throw exercise on 4 separate occasions each separated by 7 days. Each athlete completed 2 sessions consisting of 3 sets of 4 repetitions of the bench throw with feedback provided after each repetition and 2 identical sessions where no feedback was provided after each repetition. When feedback was received, there was a small increase of 1.8% (90% confidence limits, ±2.7%) and 1.3% (±0.7%) in mean peak power and velocity when averaged over the 3 sets. When individual sets were compared, there was a tendency toward the improvements in mean peak power being greater in the second and third sets. These results indicate that providing verbal feedback produced acute improvements in upper-body power output of well-trained athletes. The benefits of feedback may be greatest in the latter sets of training and could improve training quality and result in greater long-term adaptation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Back / physiology
  • Feedback, Sensory*
  • Football / physiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Muscle Strength*
  • Physical Education and Training / methods*
  • Reinforcement, Verbal
  • Resistance Training / methods*
  • Task Performance and Analysis*
  • Upper Extremity / physiology
  • Young Adult