Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Sporting Prowess Through Brain Power

Date:
February 10, 2010
Source:
Wolters Kluwer Health / Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
Summary:
Expert sportsmen are quicker to observe and react to their opponents’ moves than novice players, exhibiting enhanced activation of the cortical regions of the brain. More experienced sports players are better able to detect early anticipatory clues from opposing players’ body movements, giving them a split second advantage in preparing an appropriate response.

A study conducted by scientists at Brunel University and at the University of Hong Kong has found that expert sportsmen are quicker to observe and react to their opponents' moves than novice players, exhibiting enhanced activation of the cortical regions of the brain. The results of the study, which appear in the most recent issue of NeuroReport, show that more experienced sports players are better able to detect early anticipatory clues from opposing players' body movements, giving them a split second advantage in preparing an appropriate response.

Related Articles


Recent studies have demonstrated how expertise affects a range of perceptual-motor skills, from the imitation of hand actions in guitarists, to the learning of action sequences in pianists and dancers. In these studies, experts showed increased activation in the cortical networks of the brain compared with novices. Fast ball sports are particularly dependent on time-critical predictions of the actions of other players and of the consequences of those actions, and for several decades, sports scientists have sought to understand how expertise in these sports is developed.

This most recent study, headed by Dr Michael Wright, was carried out by observing the reaction time and brain activity of badminton players of varying degrees of ability, from recreational players to international competitors. Participants were shown video clips of an opposing badminton player striking a shuttlecock and asked to predict where the shot would land. In all participants, activation was observed in areas of the brain previously associated with the observation, understanding and preparation of human action; expert players showed enhanced brain activity in these regions and responded more quickly to the movements of their opponents.

Expertise in sports is not only dependent on physical prowess, then, but also on enhanced brain activity in these key areas of the brain. The observations made during this study will certainly have implications for how we perceive the nature of expertise in sport and perhaps even change the way athletes train.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wolters Kluwer Health / Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Wright et al. Functional MRI reveals expert-novice differences during sport-related anticipation :. Neuroreport, 2010; 21 (2): 94 DOI: 10.1097/WNR.0b013e328333dff2

Cite This Page:

Wolters Kluwer Health / Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. "Sporting Prowess Through Brain Power." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 February 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/02/100209124457.htm>.
Wolters Kluwer Health / Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. (2010, February 10). Sporting Prowess Through Brain Power. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/02/100209124457.htm
Wolters Kluwer Health / Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. "Sporting Prowess Through Brain Power." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/02/100209124457.htm (accessed December 21, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) A double-amputee makes history by becoming the first person to wear and operate two prosthetic arms using only his mind. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Prenatal Exposure To Pollution Might Increase Autism Risk

Prenatal Exposure To Pollution Might Increase Autism Risk

Newsy (Dec. 18, 2014) Harvard researchers found children whose mothers were exposed to high pollution levels in the third trimester were twice as likely to develop autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Yoga Could Be As Beneficial For The Heart As Walking, Biking

Yoga Could Be As Beneficial For The Heart As Walking, Biking

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) Yoga can help your weight, blood pressure, cholesterol and heart just as much as biking and walking does, a new study suggests. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins