Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Keeping your eye on the ball works

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So why don’t people keep their eye on the ball in sports? Because, it turns out, they don’t know how. Gretchen Reynolds reports in the NY Times:

Recently, researchers in England set out to determine whether weekend golfers could improve their game through one of two approaches. Some were coached on individual swing technique, while others were instructed to gaze fixedly at the ball before putting. The researchers hoped to learn not only whether looking at the ball affects performance, but also whether where we look changes how we think and feel while in action.
PHYS ED
Gretchen Reynolds on the science of fitness.
Back in elementary school gym class, virtually all of us were taught to keep our eyes on the ball during sports. But a growing body of research suggests that, as adults, most of us have forgotten how to do this. When scientists in recent years have attached sophisticated, miniature gaze-tracking devices to the heads of golfers, soccer players, basketball free throw shooters, tennis players and even competitive sharpshooters, they have found that a majority are not actually looking where they believe they are looking or for as long as they think.

It has been less clear, though, whether a slightly wandering gaze really matters that much to those of us who are decidedly recreational athletes.

Which is in part why the British researchers had half of their group of 40 duffers practice putting technique, while the other half received instruction in a gaze-focusing technique known as “Quiet Eye” training.

Quiet Eye training, as the name suggests, is . . .

Continue reading.

Written by LeisureGuy

28 November 2012 at 1:03 pm

Posted in Daily life, Science

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