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Effects of visual skills training, vision coaching and sports vision dynamics on the performance of a sport skill

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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of three different approaches to improving sports performance through improvements in “sports vision:” (1) a visual skills training programme, (2) traditional vision coaching sessions, and (3) a multi-disciplinary approach identified as sports vision dynamics. Seventy women (ages of 19-24) were matched on the basis of their netball passing skills and their performance on visual skills tests, in order to form four groups of similar abilities. The intervention programmes were conducted in 30-minute sessions, twice a week for five consecutive weeks. Group 1 received vision dynamics; Group 2 received vision coaching; Group 3 received visual skills training; and Group 4 was the control group. All three groups receiving vision enhancement interventions achieved a significant increase in their netball passing speed. Subjects receiving vision dynamics and visual skills training also achieved a significant increase in their passing accuracy. The percentage of improvement in both speed and accuracy gains indicated that the vision dynamics programme produced much greater gains than either of the other two treatment programmes. These results indicate that sports vision dynamics appear to be the most effective approach to helping players maximise their use of vision during sport performance. (Af. J. for Physical, Health Education, Recreation and Dance: 2003 9 (1): 20-31)

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Chapter
Training to optimize visual performance abilities is a logical supplement to other training programs that athletes perform in order to improve sports performance in competition. An overview of how to develop and successfully implement sports vision training is presented. A detailed description of common sports vision training approaches is provided with research evidence to support efficacy, when available. Updates on commercially available instrumentation to train various visual performance abilities is presented.
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