Further evidence against eye-hand coordination as a general ability

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Abstract

A number of companies are marketing general eye hand coordination (EHC) training devices, which are purported to enhance performance on the device and in a sporting domain. An act comprising EHC involves the complex combination of a number of distinct functions and an investigation of what tasks share this common factor has not been completed. There is also a lack of evidence investigating the interrelationship between different tests to assess EHC using these devices. A number of different EHC abilities, rather than one common factor, could potentially underpin any range of tasks involving EHC and visual stimuli. Therefore, the present study investigated the theoretical assumption upon which such EHC training devices are based; that is, whether EHC is a general ability. Eighty-seven currently active sportspeople (age 18.6±0.9 years; 58 males and 29 females) completed four tests of EHC: three laboratory tasks (the Sports Vision TrainerTM; Batak ProTM; and Graded Pegboard) and a field task (wall catch test). Intercorrelations between the tasks ranged from weak to strong, but the percentage of shared variance was typically low. Overall, the results do not support the existence of a common EHC ability underpinning performance on general EHC training devices. Consequently, coaches and sport scientists should be aware that training on general EHC training devices is unlikely to transfer to sporting performances. Instead, practitioners are encouraged to explore sport-specific assessment and training of EHC.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1884-1849
JournalInternational Journal of Sports Science and Coaching
Volume13
Issue number5
Early online date7 Dec 2017
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 7 Dec 2017

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ability
evidence
Sports
performance
coach
stimulus
marketing
lack

Keywords

  • visuo motor skills
  • motor ability
  • skill acquisition
  • eye-hand coordination
  • vision training

Cite this

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title = "Further evidence against eye-hand coordination as a general ability",
abstract = "A number of companies are marketing general eye hand coordination (EHC) training devices, which are purported to enhance performance on the device and in a sporting domain. An act comprising EHC involves the complex combination of a number of distinct functions and an investigation of what tasks share this common factor has not been completed. There is also a lack of evidence investigating the interrelationship between different tests to assess EHC using these devices. A number of different EHC abilities, rather than one common factor, could potentially underpin any range of tasks involving EHC and visual stimuli. Therefore, the present study investigated the theoretical assumption upon which such EHC training devices are based; that is, whether EHC is a general ability. Eighty-seven currently active sportspeople (age 18.6±0.9 years; 58 males and 29 females) completed four tests of EHC: three laboratory tasks (the Sports Vision TrainerTM; Batak ProTM; and Graded Pegboard) and a field task (wall catch test). Intercorrelations between the tasks ranged from weak to strong, but the percentage of shared variance was typically low. Overall, the results do not support the existence of a common EHC ability underpinning performance on general EHC training devices. Consequently, coaches and sport scientists should be aware that training on general EHC training devices is unlikely to transfer to sporting performances. Instead, practitioners are encouraged to explore sport-specific assessment and training of EHC.",
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author = "Paul Ellison and Phil Kearney and Andy Sparks and Philip Murphy and David Marchant",
year = "2017",
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doi = "https://doi.org/10.1177/1747954117747132",
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AB - A number of companies are marketing general eye hand coordination (EHC) training devices, which are purported to enhance performance on the device and in a sporting domain. An act comprising EHC involves the complex combination of a number of distinct functions and an investigation of what tasks share this common factor has not been completed. There is also a lack of evidence investigating the interrelationship between different tests to assess EHC using these devices. A number of different EHC abilities, rather than one common factor, could potentially underpin any range of tasks involving EHC and visual stimuli. Therefore, the present study investigated the theoretical assumption upon which such EHC training devices are based; that is, whether EHC is a general ability. Eighty-seven currently active sportspeople (age 18.6±0.9 years; 58 males and 29 females) completed four tests of EHC: three laboratory tasks (the Sports Vision TrainerTM; Batak ProTM; and Graded Pegboard) and a field task (wall catch test). Intercorrelations between the tasks ranged from weak to strong, but the percentage of shared variance was typically low. Overall, the results do not support the existence of a common EHC ability underpinning performance on general EHC training devices. Consequently, coaches and sport scientists should be aware that training on general EHC training devices is unlikely to transfer to sporting performances. Instead, practitioners are encouraged to explore sport-specific assessment and training of EHC.

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