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Journal Article

Smooth Pursuit Eye Movement Adaptation in High Level Gymnasts

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Beykirch,  K
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Campos,  JL
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

von Lassberg, C., Beykirch, K., Campos, J., & Krug, J. (2012). Smooth Pursuit Eye Movement Adaptation in High Level Gymnasts. Motor Control, 16(2), 176-194.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-B7DA-8
Abstract
This study investigated long-term adaptations of smooth pursuit eye movement characteristics in high-level gymnasts and compared these responses to those of nonathletes. Gymnasts were selected because of their exceptional ability to spatially orient during fast, multiaxial whole body rotations. Participants were tested with standardized and supra-maximal sinusoidal smooth pursuit measurements. The results showed significantly higher gain values in top-level gymnasts, followed by young federal team gymnasts, followed by the nonathlete control group. By testing participants over the course of three years and also after periods of abstinence from training, changes to patterns of smooth pursuit over time are revealed. These results have interesting implications for understanding the characteristics of eye-movements in expert populations as well as understanding the general principles that underlie oculomotor adaptation.