Volume 29, Issue 12 (3-2023)                   RJMS 2023, 29(12): 262-274 | Back to browse issues page

Research code: IR.IAU.KHUISF.REC.1400.122
Ethics code: IR.IAU.KHUISF.REC.1400.122
Clinical trials code: .

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Heydari H, Badami R, Meshkati Z. The Effect of Sports Vision Training on Cognitive Skills in Inline Hockey Players. RJMS 2023; 29 (12) :262-274
URL: http://rjms.iums.ac.ir/article-1-7020-en.html
Associate Professor , Islamic Azad University, Esfahan (Khorasgan) Branch, Esfahan, Iran , rokhsareh.badami@gmail.com
Abstract:   (609 Views)
Background & Aims: In recent years, different vision training has been used to improve visual skills and performance. One of these trainings is sports vision training. Sport vision training, that uses stimuli in optometric tasks (2,3), sport-specific videos or images (4), or stroboscopic interruption of vision (5,6), has been proposed under the idea that improving vision with oculomotor exercises, which might be associated with motor actions, would improve performance. For instance, Abernethy and Wood (2) used generic stimuli (e.g., alphanumeric symbols, shapes, patterns and colors) presented to athletes in a form of painted charts or apparatuses. Participants had to respond with simple ocular adjustments, which in some cases were combined with simple motor actions, such as pointing or touching targets (7). Although an increasing interest in vision training for sport performance, whether vision training would have a transfer to the field-sport setting remains unclear. Most of the intervention studies employed tasks based on optometric stimuli (e.g., hart charts and Marsden ball) and on computer programs (e.g., D2 Dynavision and Eye port) requiring simple ocular adjustments, and generic movements of hands as responses (2,3,11-14). The lack of evidences for supporting sport vision training efficacy to improve performance has been proposed to be related to methodological approaches resulting in a lack of ecological validity of the training stimuli (15). As such, generic and automated nature of the motor actions required as response might have limited the potential effects on the sport performance. This lack of transfer seems to support the idea, proposed in ecological framework by Gibson, that perception and action have a direct circular relationship mediated by the information within external environment (i.e. affordances), rather than by internal representations (16). Although the results of various studies have shown an improvement in visual skills and athletic performance based on sports vision training; but the main challenge is to examine the qualitative process versus the quantitative processes. Considering that balance is one of the main components in hockey (25), and considering that balance is created from the interaction of three visual, atrial and sensory- motor systems (26), The main question is whether sports vision training can improve the balance (kinetics) of hockey players or not? Therefore, the purpose of the current study was to examine the effect of sports vision training on balance and gaze behavior.
Methods: The current study, according to the predicted goals, was a quasi-experimental research and the research design was pretest-posttest. Also, the current study was applied in terms of using the obtained results. Participants in the current study were 40 male hockey novices aged 15 to 20 years who were selected by convenience sampling. Participants were randomly divided into two groups of sports vision training and control. Criteria for inclusion in the study include normal vision, binocular vision, right leg and right hand. Exclusion criteria include withdrawal from the study, absence on the day of the test, and injury at various phases of the study. The measuring instruments included a force plate form and an eye tracking system. The present study included pre-test, intervention (practice) and post-test phases. In the pre-test phase, participants stood on a force platform to measure their balance. Participants were asked to stand barefoot on the force plate for 30 seconds while looking at the marked spot in front of them and trying to maintain their balance. At the same time, an eye tracking system was used to measure the gaze behavior of participants in performing balance skills. In the intervention phase (practice), which lasted for nine weeks and two sessions per week and each session lasted 90 minutes; the training group performed the relevant exercises while the control group performed their daily activities. The post-test phase was performed exactly after the last training session. At this phase, participants were asked to stand barefoot on the force plate for 30 seconds. At the same time, an eye tracking system was used to measure the gaze behavior of participants in performing balance skills. Data analyzed with paired sample t test and independent t test.
Results: The results showed that the anterior-posterior displacement of the center of pressure was significantly improved by pre-test (29.25) to post-test (24.45) mm. Other results indicate that there is a significant difference between the groups in the anterior-posterior displacement of the center of pressure, and the sports vision group with an mean difference of 4.30 mm has a lower center of pressure displacement compared to the control group (P <0.05). Other results showed that the lateral-midlateral displacement of the center of pressure was significantly improved by pre-test (45.80) to post-test (39.90) mm. Other results indicate that there is a significant difference between the groups in the lateral-midlateral displacement of the center of pressure, and the sports vision group with an mean difference of 7.15 mm has a lower center of pressure displacement compared to the control group (P <0.05). Also, other results showed that fixation was significantly improved by pre-test (188.70) to post-test (248.60) ms. Other results indicate that there is a significant difference between the groups in fixation, and the sports vision group with an mean difference of 52.014 ms has a longer fixation compared to the control group (P <0.05).
Conclusion: In general, the results of the current study showed that sports vision training improved balance and increased fixation of participants, so the results of the present study emphasize the importance of sports vision training on behavioral (balance) and process (fixation) characteristics. As a result, coaches and professionals working with novice hockey players are advised to pay attention to these exercises beforehand and use them in field and laboratory environments to improve performance and movement process. Also, according to the research results, trainers are advised to pay special attention to sports vision exercises and their possible effects on gaze behavior so that they can at least overcome the negative effects (psychological and physiological pressures). Although the current study and previous studies in this field have provided considerable insight into the value of sports vision training in understanding conscious perception, note that this work has been done almost exclusively using information processing paradigms. Other paradigms, such as ecological psychology and nonlinear dynamics, can provide new methods for the research gap identified in this study.
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Type of Study: Research | Subject: Exercise Physiology

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