Expertise studies into visual perceptual-motor skills have mainly focused their investigation upon group comparisons rather than individual comparisons. This study investigated the pick-up of visual information to time weight transfer and bat kinematics within an exemplar group of striking sport experts using an in situ temporal occlusion paradigm. Highly skilled cricket batsmen faced bowlers and attempted to strike delivered balls, whilst their vision was either temporally occluded through occlusion glasses prior to ball bounce or not occluded (control condition). A chronometric analysis was conducted on trials in the occlusion condition to quantify the pick-up of visual information to time biomechanical variables. Results indicated that initiation of weight transfer and bat downswing, as well as bat downswing completion, was significantly different between some individual batsmen. No significant difference was found between individual batsmen for time of weight transfer completion. Unexpectedly, it was found that achievement of the goal to strike delivered balls, that is, the frequency of bat-ball contacts was not significantly different between batsmen. Collectively, the findings indicate that individual differences exist in the coordination pattern of a complex whole body visual perceptual-motor skill, but these different patterns are used to achieve a similar outcome, which is known as motor equivalence.
- individual differences
- visual perceptual-motor skill
- motor equivalence
- striking sports