Are action-specific effects on perception action-specific?

R. Canal Bruland, J. van der Kamp

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    Golf players who hit more often estimate the hole to be bigger and baseball players who bat more successfully show the same effect. This intriguing relationship between perception and performance is referred to as "action-specific perception". Empirical evidence for this phenomenon has been reported for various sports. Currently, different theoretical explanations for action-specific perception are debated under the umbrella of embodied cognition theory. In this position paper, we depart from a critical theoretical assessment of the currently undifferentiated reference to embodied cognition theory, and question whether action-specific effects on perception have, in fact, been shown to be action-specific and thus to be embodied. The aim of the position paper is to strengthen the embodied cognition account within the sport sciences by critically examining the current state of affairs. In this regard, questioning and assessing whether action-specific effects on perception are embodied is indeed imperative. This examination results in novel routes of thinking and new empirical approaches as regards research on actionspecific perception as well as future studies on embodied cognitive processes in sports. © 2012 Hogrefe Verlag, Göttingen.
    Original languageGerman
    Pages (from-to)57-69
    JournalZeitschrift für Sportpsychologie
    Publication statusPublished - 2012

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