October 2020
Volume 20, Issue 11
Open Access
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   October 2020
Action embodiment of expert athletes within familiar and unfamiliar sporting contexts
Author Affiliations
  • I sak Kim
    University of Hawaii at Manoa
  • Scott Sinnett
    University of Hawaii at Manoa
  • Nicola Hodges
    University of British Columbia
  • Alan Kingstone
    University of British Columbia
Journal of Vision October 2020, Vol.20, 979. doi:https://doi.org/10.1167/jov.20.11.979
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      I sak Kim, Scott Sinnett, Nicola Hodges, Alan Kingstone; Action embodiment of expert athletes within familiar and unfamiliar sporting contexts. Journal of Vision 2020;20(11):979. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/jov.20.11.979.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

Embodied cognition refers to the idea that action and body experience can influence the mind and how humans pay attention to and perceive environmental stimuli. For example, when responding to some dimension/characteristic (e.g., color) of a teacup using the right-hand, faster responses are observed when the handle faces to the right, presumably due to premotor cortex preparation to grasp the virtual cup. Other research has extended this to conditions where participants responded to images of expert athletes who play a sport-related to either hand (i.e., tennis) or foot (i.e., soccer) effectors (Bach & Tipper, 2006). However, the finding was the opposite, with compatible response-sport matchings resulting in slower response times than incompatible conditions, even without any displayed overt action, arguably due to an inhibitory social contrast effect. With the questionable replicability of the social contrast (Doyen et al., 2012), we explored whether simply viewing an expert soccer/tennis player both in and out-of-action would lead to a similar effect. We further examined how the effect might be modulated by creating conditions where the images portrayed the expert athletes playing the opposite sport (e.g., Roger Federer playing soccer) to determine whether an action or identity-response compatibility drives the effect. The findings indicated that participants responded more quickly with the effector that matched the sporting-action in both congruent-contexts (e.g., hand-response to Federer playing tennis) and incongruent-contexts (e.g., foot-response to Federer playing soccer). The data highlight that despite the identify discrimination task, response times were facilitated by the perceived action even for pictures where the identity should facilitate the opposite response. Meaning, while the context manipulation did interfere with participants’ motor response associated with the player identity (i.e., slower overall), responses were faster for effectors associated with the portrayed action rather than the player’s identity.

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