Action observation combined with motor imagery: Influence of the type of video model on the performance of the basketball free throw in middle school students

By Vanessa Hatchi, Robin Nicolas

The aim of this study was to test the effects of the model when action observational (AO) and motor imagery (MI) are combined with actual practice, during physical education, in a basketball free throw task. Thirty-nine middle school students (Mage = 12.75) were randomly divided into 3 groups: Control, AOpair+MI and AOself+MI. They performed a pre-test (i.e., 10 free throws) then 4 training sessions consisting of performing 5 blocks of 2 free throws. Before each block, they watched a video clip unrelated to the skill involved in the protocol, then performed a countdown task (Control group) or watch the video of a peer model (AOpeer+MI group) or of oneself (AOself+MI) realizing a successful free throw and then imagined a successful free throw. Finally, they performed a post-test similar to the pre-test. The results show that the students benefiting from the video before the MI (AOself+MI and AOpeer+MI groups) performed better than those of the Control group during the post-test and that the students benefiting from the self-model had higher performance than students having video of a peer model. Results are discussed in the light of the literature and applied recommendations are offered to teachers, in particular with regard to the individualization of learning.

  • motor imagery
  • basketball
  • free throw
  • video
  • model
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