Research press release


Nature Neuroscience

Better action anticipation in elite basketball players

バスケットボールのエリート選手は他のバスケットボール関連の専門家や初心者に比べ、シュートがバスケットに入るか入らないかを予測する能力にすぐれている。この違いは動作の準備に現れていることが、Nature Neuroscience(電子版)の研究でわかった。

S Agliotiらは、プロのバスケットボール選手とバスケットボールのコーチ、試合観戦の経験はそれに匹敵するほどあっても試合経験は初心者並みに少ないスポーツジャーナリストを、経頭蓋磁気刺激(TMS)という方法を利用して比較した。




Elite basketball players are better than other basketball related professionals and novices at predicting whether a shot will land in or out of the basket, and this difference is reflected in their action preparedness, finds a study published online this week in Nature Neuroscience.

Salvatore Aglioti and his colleagues used a technique called transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to compare professional basketball players to basketball coaches and sports journalists, who had comparable experience watching games but were not as experienced in playing the game, as well as novices.

All of the subjects watched a video clip of a player throwing a ball at the basket, and this clip was interrupted before the ball reached the basket. The basketball players were better at predicting whether the ball would land in and out of the basket, and crucially, this difference emerged around the time the ball was seen to leave the player's hand, suggesting that it is based on reading the player's body posture, rather than following the trajectory of the ball.

Recording muscle twitches evoked by TMS over the primary motor cortex is a method of measuring neuronal excitability and motor preparedness for an action. Using this measure, the authors also found that the players had greater hand and forearm TMS-evoked muscle activity when viewing photos of throws which eventually landed outside the basket.

These results suggest that sporting excellence may be related to the fine-tuning of specific anticipatory brain mechanisms that could help predict the outcome of others' actions.

doi: 10.1038/nn.2182

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