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Rob Gray (@ShakeyWaits) is a professor at Arizona State University who has been conducting research on and teaching courses related to perceptual-motor skill for over 25 years. He is also author of the incredible new book How We Learn to Move: A Revolution in the Way We Coach and Practice Sports Skills.  He received his MS and PhD from York University in Canada with a focus on the visual control of movement. An important aspect of his work has been applying basic theory to address real-world challenges which he has done in positions with Nissan Motor Corp, the US Air Force, serving as an expert witness for driving accident cases, and consultant roles with several sports teams and organizations. In 2015, he started the Perception & Action Podcast ( to help bridge the gap between theory and the field. With over 350 episodes and 2 million downloads, it has become a critical resource for individuals working in areas including coaching, talent development, training and rehabilitation.

In our discussion today, Rob and John talk about the myth of the one size fits all technique, the benefits of training variability and small-sided games, why it makes no sense to gather in groups and then practice as individuals, and much more. It’s a great discussion, and you will want to be ready to take notes. 

Connect with Rob:



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This week’s podcast is brought to you by our friends at Sprocket Sports.  Sprocket Sports is a new software platform for youth sports clubs.  Yeah, there are a lot of these systems out there, but Sprocket provides the full enchilada. They give you all the cool front-end stuff to make your club look good– like websites and marketing tools – AND all the back-end transactions and services to run your business better so you can focus on what really matters – your players and your teams. 

Sprocket is built for those clubs looking to thrive, not just survive, in the competitive world of youth sports clubs.  So if you’ve been looking for a true business partner – not just another app – check them out today at

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Tagged under: Coaching, skill acquisition