Choke Under Pressure Experiment

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In an article published in 2014 by authors Goodman, Kashdan, Mallard, and Schumann, an experiment was performed to test how yoga as in intervention could improve the well being of a men’s NCAA Division 1 athletic team. According to the study, athletes are at increased risk for having difficulty dealing with negative emotional and behavioral experiences. They are under quiet a lot of pressure because of the situations they have to juggle in their every day lives: relationships, their public image, school responsibilities, and family obligations. Traditionally, studies attempt to cut out the negative experience and surround the athletes with only positive ones. In most cases this has been proven to be counterproductive. By avoiding the negatives,…show more content…
When athletes focus on their surroundings such as a crowd or the winning shot, it seems to interrupt the nature that they have learned for the skill. When an athlete chokes, they do not perform up to their full potential. They tested this in three separate experiments. The focus was on motor performance of skilled athletes in 3 sports: penalty shots in soccer, a number of kicks in tae kwon do, and serves in badminton. There were pretests in each experiment that was free of any kind of pressure. Those pretests were followed by one or two tests under pressure. Experiment 1 and 2 the effect of hemisphere-specific priming was tested. In experiment 3 two test faces – first, the main effect of pressure on performance was examined, and then hemisphere-specific priming was used – to test the effects. The participant squeezing a soft ball prior to performing a skilled motor task tests the hemisphere-specific priming. The authors believe that by squeezing the ball with the left hand should activate the visuospatial process needed to perform successfully…show more content…
There were thirty semiprofessional male soccer players that had to make 6 penalty shots without pressure, then 6 with pressure. The pressure that was put on them was a large audience. They were also placed into teams and were told that the winning team would receive rewards for their performance. Half of the participants squeezed the ball with their left hand while the others did with their right. Experiment 2 was to add on to the results of the first experiment. Twenty experienced tae kwon do athletes had to perform kicks to a sandbag with accuracy. The combination was five simple kids followed by five 3-kicks. These were performed without pressure then with pressure. The pressure in this experiment was that their performance would be recorded and evaluated by their coach. The ball was squeezed just like in the first one with the participants. In experiment 3 the authors tested squeezing with the left hand to see if it prevented choking like they hoped. They tested eighteen highly skilled people that played badminton and tested their serving accuracy. First the experiment was performed without pressure, second with pressure, and third with pressure and the ball squeezing. Most of the participants used the left hand to squeeze, but the authors made a few of them squeeze with their right hand randomly throughout the
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