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This study was undertaken to determine if response selection accuracy could be improved without sacrificing a football linebacker’s response selection speed by practicing his response selection skills in relation to various offensive plays that were seen via a videotape from a viewing angle similar to what he would see in a game. The task required the linebacker to respond to the cues of the tight end and backfield play by manipulating a joystick as accurately and quickly as possible. The data revealed that there was an improvement in response selection accuracy without sacrificing response selection speed. This finding was interpreted as evidence that training using a video-tape that displays a view of plays that is similar to what is seen in a game situation can be an effective method for improving the perceptual skills needed for response selection accuracy by a linebacker in a laboratory setting.
Robert W. Christina, formerly with the Department of Exercise and Sport Science at The Pennsylvania State University, now chairs the Department of Physical Therapy/Exercise Science at SUNY at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY 14222. Jamie V. Barresi and Paul Shaffner are with the Department of Exercise and Sport Science, White Bldg., The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802.