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Jared Porter, Hubert Makaruk, and Marcin Starzak

According to the constrained action hypothesis, an external focus of attention is beneficial for motor learning due to improvements in movement automization. In contrast, an internal focus of attention interferes with automaticity and decreases the effects of motor learning. This study was designed to test the automaticity assumption of the focus of attention effect within a highly skilled population. We examined the effects of attentional focus on kinematics in rope jumping and visual control. Participants practiced the rope-jumping task over five days of acquisition, which was followed by a retention and transfer test. The findings provided evidence that the learning of the task was improved and automaticity was increased by the external focus compared with the internal focus and no attentional (i.e., control condition) conditions. In addition, these findings indicate that visual attention as a function of attentional focus has a stronger relationship with practice performance rather than with motor learning effects.

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Geovani Messias da Silva and Maria Eduarda Crescencio Bezerra

the environment. In addition, external focus has been pointed out as a way to apply constrained action hypothesis ( Wulf, McNevin, & Shea, 2001 ). This hypothesis postulates that when guiding movement based on body movements (i.e., internal focus), greater conscious attention is demanded and leads to

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Hubert Makaruk, Jared M. Porter, Barbara Długołęcka, Urszula Parnicka, and Beata Makaruk

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of different foci of attention on parameters related to maximum muscular power in older women. Using a counterbalanced within-participant design, 23 physically active young-old women (age 59-69) completed a maximum effort cycle ergometer test following three types of verbal instructions. The external instruction (EXF) was designed to focus attention on moving the pedals as fast as possible, internal instruction (INF) directed attention toward moving the legs as fast as possible, and a control condition (CON) was created in which participants were instructed to perform the task to the best of their abilities. Results indicated that the EXF and CON conditions resulted in greater muscular power compared with the INF condition. Results also indicated that directing attention internally hindered muscular power performance in older women, which is consistent with the predictions of the constrained action hypothesis.

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Laura J. Petranek, Nicole D. Bolter, and Ken Bell

constrained action hypothesis, Wulf et al. ( 2010 ) suggest that the negative effects observed from an individual receiving high bouts of feedback are not a result of dependency on the feedback, but rather receiving high bouts of augmented feedback induces an internal attention of focus. In this way, learners

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Marko Milic, Danica Janicijevic, Aleksandar Nedeljkovic, Ivan Cuk, Milos Mudric, and Amador García-Ramos

on the pathway. However, the results of this study contradict the constrained action hypothesis according to which focusing the attention internally interferes with automatic control processes that normally enable smooth, natural movements ( Wulf, McNevin, & Shea, 2001 ). Although the constrained

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Antje Hill, Linda Schücker, Norbert Hagemann, and Bernd Strauß

use of different internal foci (focus on breathing, running movement, and feelings of perceived exertion), while participants ran on a treadmill. Results were in line with the constrained action hypothesis ( Wulf, McNevin, & Shea, 2001 ), a theoretical framework usually explaining focus effects in the

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Kevin A. Becker, Ayana F. Georges, and Christopher A. Aiken

external focus of attention leads to superior performance and learning when compared to an internal focus (see Wulf, 2013 for a review). The most commonly cited explanation for the benefit of adopting an external focus of attention is the constrained action hypothesis ( McNevin, Shea, & Wulf, 2003

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Ayoub Asadi, Alireza Farsi, Behrouz Abdoli, Esmaeel Saemi, and Jared M. Porter

It is well established that providing instructions that direct attention externally rather than internally enhances motor skill performance ( Wulf, 2013 ). For several years the constrained action hypothesis has been cited as the most likely explanation for why directing attention externally

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Louisa D. Raisbeck, Jed A. Diekfuss, Dustin R. Grooms, and Randy Schmitz

facilitates enhanced performance and greater skill learning relative to an internal focus. 3 One theoretical explanation for the skilled performance and learning changes resulting from an external focus is the constrained-action hypothesis. 6 – 8 This theory suggests that an external focus reduces the level

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Alejandro Pérez-Castilla, F. Javier Rojas, John F.T. Fernandes, Federico Gómez-Martínez, and Amador García-Ramos

parts that are involved in the movement ( Comyns et al., 2019 ). The performance gains associated with an EF are attributed to the constrained action hypothesis, which suggests that the movements are controlled by automatic motor processes when adopting an EF ( Wulf, 2013 ). To the best of our knowledge