Testing England Cricket athletes: performance and vision


So we are testing a range of different people
across the sporting spectrum of eliteness and today we have got the England ladies cricket
team coming to work with us. It’s just a really interesting day and we
are all just really looking forward to the outcome. I am a professor of visual development here
at Bradford University in the School of Optometry and Vision Science and together with some
colleagues in Faculty of Engineering here at Bradford and also Liverpool John Moores
University and St Andrews we are working on a project that’s examining the contribution
that vision may make to eliteness in sport. We are hoping to understand a little bit more
about vision and its impact on performance and whether or not we can identify some real
raw visionary, if you like, traits or skills that our players potentially have which we
can potentially train in others and then transfer to performance and impact more positively
on performance. We are always very competitive and the girls
that I am with today are actually my housemates as well so we are kind of slyly asking each
other how we have none but not giving too much away so I am hoping that I have done
well. It’s not as to whether vision is important,
vision is clearly important, the question is whether at the very top end of vision a
very superior end of vision is actually conferring an advantage and that advantage predisposes
people to eliteness in sport. The possible implications and our motivation
for doing this project wasn’t just about sport. In disease for example, in trauma,
there is a loss of skill and so using elite sport as an example of how skills might be
developed, gives us a way perhaps of dealing with the aftermath of trauma or the consequences
of disease.

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