Differences in gaze behaviours during green reading of mixed ability golfers: A pilot study

Evelyn Carnegie, Sam Towers, David Marchant, Paul Ellison

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterpeer-review

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Objectives: Research has identified experts are typically more efficient in visual search strategies enabling effective processing of environmental information. It has been suggested that examination of the gaze behaviour of golfers engaging in their pre-shot routines alongside their subsequent skill execution is warranted. The aim of this pilot study was to examine differences in green reading behaviour used by novice and expert golfers during varying green complexity in golf putting. Design: Golf putts were completed in three slope conditions; Straight (S), Right to Left (RL), and Left to Right (LR) using a between-participants (Novice v Expert) experimental design. Methods: Fourteen mixed ability golfers (age: 26±9.9 yrs.) were divided equally into expert and novice groups based on handicaps and took ten familiarisation putts on a synthetic putting green. Participants wore a Tobii Glasses mobile eye tracker to record gaze behaviour towards key features (KF) of the putting green. Ten putts were competed in each condition. Results: There was a significant main effect of group (p=0.05) in all conditions with experts typically displaying longer fixation duration, a greater number of total fixations, and a greater number of fixations towards the KF compared to novices. Conclusion: There was evidence to suggest that expert golfers displayed more distinctive gaze behaviours towards KF of the green across all conditions. Experts displayed significantly longer fixation durations on key environmental features prior to shot execution indicating that they are better able to identify and plan movements in relation to putting conditions.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 12 Dec 2016
EventBritish Psychological Society (BPS) Division of Sport & Exercise Science Conference - Cardiff, United Kingdom
Duration: 12 Dec 201613 Dec 2016


ConferenceBritish Psychological Society (BPS) Division of Sport & Exercise Science Conference
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


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