Now I know for a fact that this coaching cue is used frequently in the gym, but do you understand it?
When would you do this? When you are using body tension to create power and stability.
What exactly does this mean? Let’s use a handstand as an example, when doing one it takes far less work when the body holds tension from the fingers to the toes (straight legs, legs together, toes pointed up, midline in a hollow position, a posterior pelvic tilt, neutral cervical spine and active shoulders with elbows locked). When the tense pieces begin to relax and lose tightness the musculature then needs to compensate. The muscles require energy to work so you are creating more work for the body to do the same task that the tension you created was doing.
So when you hear “Tighter” it means that the musculature has to do less, this makes the work being done seem like it requires less energy.