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Anne R. Schutte and John P. Spencer

The timed-initiation paradigm developed by Ghez and colleagues (1997) has revealed two modes of motor planning: continuous and discrete. Continuous responding occurs when targets are separated by less than 60° of spatial angle, and discrete responding occurs when targets are separated by greater than 60°. Although these two modes are thought to reflect the operation of separable strategic planning systems, a new theory of movement preparation, the Dynamic Field Theory, suggests that two modes emerge flexibly from the same system. Experiment 1 replicated continuous and discrete performance using a task modified to allow for a critical test of the single system view. In Experiment 2, participants were allowed to correct their movements following movement initiation (the standard task does not allow corrections). Results showed continuous planning performance at large and small target separations. These results are consistent with the proposal that the two modes reflect the time-dependent “preshaping” of a single planning system.

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Jeroen B.J. Smeets, Leonie Oostwoud Wijdenes and Eli Brenner

We can adjust an ongoing movement to a change in the target’s position with a latency of about 100 ms, about half of the time that is needed to start a new movement in response to the same change in target position (reaction time). In this opinion paper, we discuss factors that could explain the difference in latency between initiating and adjusting a movement in response to target displacements. We consider the latency to be the sum of the durations of various stages in information processing. Many of these stages are identical for adjusting and initiating a movement; however, for movement initiation, it is essential to detect that something has changed to respond, whereas adjustments to movements can be based on updated position information without detecting that the position has changed. This explanation for the shorter latency for movement adjustments also explains why we can respond to changes that we do not detect.

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Kenneth J. Killian, Rosemary A. Joyce-Petrovich, Lucille Menna and Susan A. Arena

There is little objective evidence to support the belief that swimming is an enjoyable and valuable activity for autistic individuals. In this study, a checklist was used to record the responses of 37 autistic children and youth to water orientation and beginner swim activities. The data indicated that the autistic subjects responded in a predictable and apparently normal manner to a hierarchy of water skills. Also, the subjects displayed a low objection rate to water activities. Strong relationships (r = .95, p < .01) were shown between age and water orientation and also between prior experience and water orientation (r = .88, p < .01). The findings support the literature in that the majority of subjects responded well to, or at least tolerated, water activities. Swimming pool activities may offer potential learning opportunities for many autistic individuals and should be investigated further as an avenue for improving a variety of physical, academic, or social skills.

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Walter Gantz and Lawrence A. Wenner

Employing a uses and gratifications paradigm, we expected that audience experience with televised sports would vary on the basis of fanship, with fans having a qualitatively different, deeper, and more textured set of expectations and responses than nonfans. Fans were expected to respond in similar ways, regardless of gender. Telephone interviews were completed with 707 adults residing in Los Angeles and Indianapolis. Fanship was operationalized using cognitive, affective, and behavioral bases. In this study, fanship made a difference, with fans clearly more invested in the viewing experience. Male and female sports fans reacted and responded in almost identical ways, although men generally were an insignificant shade more involved than women. However, since more males are fans, the televised sports viewing experience in many households may not be shared, even when husbands and wives watch the same TV sports program.

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Phillip Ward, Shannon L. Smith, Kemal Makasci and Darrell W. Crouch

The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of peer-mediated accountability (PMA) on average male and female students and low skilled female students during the performance of the lay-up in basketball. A multiple baseline design was used to assess the effects of PMA on the number of trials performed and the percentage of correct trials. Participants were 9 elementary school students in Grades 4 and 5. Peer-mediated accountability was effective in increasing the opportunities to respond for both average and low skilled students but did not change the percentage of correct performances by the students. These results support previous findings that suggest that, though PMA is an effective strategy to promote opportunities to respond, it is an inappropriate strategy to use when students cannot perform the skill. An analysis of the data also revealed that the lower skilled students performed a similar number of trials as their counterparts.

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Derwin K.C. Chan, Andreas Ivarsson, Andreas Stenling, Sophie X. Yang, Nikos L.D. Chatzisarantis and Martin S. Hagger

Consistency tendency is characterized by the propensity for participants responding to subsequent items in a survey consistent with their responses to previous items. This method effect might contaminate the results of sport psychology surveys using cross-sectional design. We present a randomized controlled crossover study examining the effect of consistency tendency on the motivational pathway (i.e., autonomy support → autonomous motivation → intention) of self-determination theory in the context of sport injury prevention. Athletes from Sweden (N = 341) responded to the survey printed in either low interitem distance (IID; consistency tendency likely) or high IID (consistency tendency suppressed) on two separate occasions, with a one-week interim period. Participants were randomly allocated into two groups, and they received the survey of different IID at each occasion. Bayesian structural equation modeling showed that low IID condition had stronger parameter estimates than high IID condition, but the differences were not statistically significant.

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Brian C. Martinson, A. Lauren Crain, Nancy E. Sherwood, Marcia G. Hayes, Nicolaas P. Pronk and Patrick J. O’Connor

Objective:

To assess the representativeness of older adults recruited to a physical activity maintenance RCT by conducting sequential comparisons to characterize study sample composition changes occurring between sampling frame construction and study enrollment.

Method:

Study subjects (N = 1049) were 50 to 70 year old men and women who had increased physical activity within the past year recruited from a Midwestern managed care organization.

Results:

Those responding to an initial mailed screener differed on demographic, behavioral, and SES characteristics from those not responding. Compared with ineligibles, eligible individuals were significantly younger, more highly educated, and more likely to report improved health in the prior year. Compared with eligible individuals who did not enroll, enrollees had generally higher education and income.

Conclusions:

Physical activity promotion programs in older adults may have limited reach and substantial volunteer bias. Additional strategies to increase the reach of physical activity interventions into the target population are needed.

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Barbara G. Wiita and Isabelle A. Stombaugh

The purpose of this study was to examine changes in nutrition knowledge, intakes, attitudes, and behaviors as well as health status of 22 female adolescent runners. Subjects completed questionnaires, interviews, and dietary analyses twice over a 3-year period. Over this time they experienced physical growth and improved athletic performance. Although their mean score on a test of basic and sports nutrition knowledge remained stable at 67%, after 3 years more runners correctly responded to statements about carbohydrate and fat. However, fewer responded correctly to statements regarding fluid intake and skipping meals. Although runners increased the percentage of calories consumed as carbohydrates, they significantly decreased their mean energy intake, thus lowering carbohydrate intake. They significantly lowered protein, calcium, potassium, and sodium intakes. The incidence of possible eating disorders increased, as did stress fractures. Over 3 years, nutrition knowledge did not improve, the quality of dietary intakes decreased, incidence of eating disorders and stress fractures increased, and menstrual irregularities remained high.

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Matthias Bluemke, Ralf Brand, Geoffrey Schweizer and Daniela Kahlert

Models employed in exercise psychology highlight the role of reflective processes for explaining behavior change. However, as discussed in social cognition literature, information-processing models also consider automatic processes (dual-process models). To examine the relevance of automatic processing in exercise psychology, we used a priming task to assess the automatic evaluations of exercise stimuli in physically active sport and exercise majors (n = 32), physically active nonsport majors (n = 31), and inactive students (n = 31). Results showed that physically active students responded faster to positive words after exercise primes, whereas inactive students responded more rapidly to negative words. Priming task reaction times were successfully used to predict reported amounts of exercise in an ordinal regression model. Findings were obtained only with experiential items reflecting negative and positive consequences of exercise. The results illustrate the potential importance of dual-process models in exercise psychology.

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Brian Stoddart

This paper responds to the Klein and Mandle papers, placing them in the context of a growing literature. It argues that noncustomary sports practices need to be examined in their own cultural settings rather than from the standards of the developed world. It refers to issues of ethnographic practice, and argues that the richest understandings will proceed from crossdisciplinary reference to fields such as history and anthropology.