Demonstration

Demonstration of the exercise is a vital skill for a successful class (Kennedy and Yoke, 2005). Much of the learning and performance of the group will result from a combination of oral command and visual cues from the leader. Many of the CR group will be over 50 years of age (Bethell, et al., 2001), with age-related physical and motor changes. In addition, hearing is often compromised. Therefore, for many in the group visual cues will dominate as the motor skill learning mode. In order to engage participants whose hearing is compromised, larger, exaggerated gestures should be used to accentuate required exercise manoeuvres. Commands and gestures by the leader should be the same, so as to help the exerciser obtain maximal information for performing the exercises properly. It is important to position yourself to be seen by the class, frequently turning to let the group observe a specific detail of an exercise. For example, turn to face away from the group or side-on in order to let them see how to perform a calf stretch:

I am going to turn round. Can you see how my back foot is straight and that there is a space between my feet to help my balance?

As most motor skill learning results from visual cues, demonstration by the exercise leader must be accurate, as the participants are virtually copying the leader's performance.

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