IMAGERY IMPROVES FREE THROW SHOOTING

Post, P. G., Wrisberg, C. A., & Mullins, S. (2010) A field test of the influence of pre-game imagery on basketball free throw shooting. Journal of Imagery Research in Sport and Physical Activity: Vol. 5(1), Article 2. [Available at: http://www.bepress.com/jirspa/vol5/iss1/art2].

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This field study examined the influence of a pre-game imagery intervention implemented by a high school coach on the free throw shooting performance of a girls' basketball team. The coach conducted a systematic guided imagery exercise prior to half of the team's games over the course of an entire season. The coach employed the intervention with the whole team using a reversal design similar to the replication-reversal design used in some single-subject research. A 2 x 2 chi-square analysis was used to evaluate the observed and expected frequencies of made and missed free throw shots under the two conditions (imagery and no-imagery).

A significantly higher than expected number of game free throws was made in the intervention condition. Social validation questionnaires completed by 11 of the 16 players suggested that the players devoted significant attention to the intervention and that they perceived it to be effective.

Implication. Systematic guided imagery of free-throwing in basketball improves game performance of free throws.

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