Magazine article USA TODAY

Enhancing Perceptions of Tennis Players

Magazine article USA TODAY

Enhancing Perceptions of Tennis Players

Article excerpt

When tennis players are on their game, they perceive the ball as moving slower and the net as lower to the ground, suggest researchers from Purdue University, West Lafayette, Ind. "It is not unusual for individuals who played well or poorly to comment on their perception of the ball's speed," notes Jessica K. Witt, assistant professor of psychological sciences. "If they played well, they often say the game seemed to move in slow motion."

"In other studies, when the person performs better, like at softball, they perceive the ball to be bigger," indicates Mila Sugovic, a third-year doctoral student in cognitive psychology. 'This is the first finding where we are showing that something looks smaller or lower, and it matters in this case because the net is something the person is trying to avoid. Viewing it as smaller or lower turns out to be a good thing."

The findings are similar to Witt's previous work in golf, football, and softball. …

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