Motor Skill Learning Theory

This paper discusses motor skill learning theory as related to the author’s experience in learning inline skating.

This paper explains that, as the author practiced inline skating, he remembered that the learner builds one skill upon another and that problem solving can be used in the acquisition of motor skills. The author pointed out that, for several practice sessions, he simply worked on skating forward faster and smoother, practicing making stops at greater speeds, and consolidation of skills. The author found that new skills, which are variations of old skills, are markedly easier to learn than skills that require new movements, such as alternate ways to stop.
After about an hour, I had a minimal level of skill. I could confidently skate forward, lifting my feet rhythmically, swinging my arms and getting a little distance out of each push. Then I really needed to learn how to stop, because I was capable of gathering some speed. A fellow skater showed me how to stop by demonstrating it and describing it, using explicit instructional methods. Before I attempted it, I used pre-visualization to review the skill in my mind. It took several tries to begin to approximate the skill, but as I practiced, I gradually improved, increasing performance efficiency in a pattern of successive approximation.