November 18, 2008

Athletic Decision Making

Here is an interesting science article on shaping up athlete's brains so they can make faster, better decisions during the heat of play.

Professor Jocelyn Faubert and postdoctoral student David Tinjust, put a dozen soccer, tennis and hockey players through multiple object-tracking exercises. The athletes' capacity to absorb a lot of information simultaneously and manage it efficiently increased on average by 53 percent.

In one of these exercises, subjects in the automatic virtual environment cave were asked to follow the increasingly rapid movements of a series of balls and identify those that quickly changed colour. After each training session, which lasted about an hour, results were recorded and athletes could note their progress. "It's like physical training, but for the brain," says Faubert.

We have one of those "virtual caves" at our house.  It's called a WII Fit and it throws soccer balls, spiked shoes and/or panda heads at you.

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