Perceptual Skill Identification in a Complex Sport Setting
University of Bern, Switzerland
Decision making in sports has been extensively studied over the last two decades, with a particular focus on differences in visual search strategies and movement initiation times between experts and novices. The current study expands this paradigm by identifying situation, gender, and expertise specific gaze strategies in performing defensive actions in beach volleyball. Sixty-four beach volleyball players were confronted with 96 scenes displaying 3 attacking variations. The experimental set-up allowed participants to react as they would on court, while decision accuracy and movement initiation time were measured using a 10-camera-VICON-system. Furthermore, gaze behavior was recorded pursuing a novel integrated and automated approach with a high resolution eye tracker (EyeSeeCam, 220 Hz). First analyses show that elite players differ from near-elite players by having a higher percentage of correct decisions combined with a later movement initiation time. Apparently, elite players optimize the time available for information pick-up before initiating their defensive action.
© Owned by the authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2011