Wagaman, J. D., Barabasz, A. F., & Barabasz, M. (1991). Flotation rest and imagery in the improvement of basketball performance. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 72, 119-122.

Male intercollegiate basketball players participated in a study to determine if restricted environment stimulation (flotation tank -- REST condition; N = 11) was more effective in enhancing performance than imagery training alone (N = 11). Ss floated supine in water/epsom salts in a flotation tank while listening to a tape recording of relaxation and visualization. Other Ss sat in a comfortable chair and listened to the same tape. Each group experienced six sessions over a five-week period. The auditory tape was played 30 minutes into each session. Pretreatment (N = 11) and posttreatment (N = 5) evaluations of performance were conducted.

There was a significant difference in coaches' ratings of performance between the two groups, with the REST group being consistently superior. Ss who completed two REST sessions between games performed better than those who completed only one. However, Ss did not rate the effectiveness of each treatment differently.

Implication. The heightened experience of visualization in a flotation tank is related to improved performances in basketball.

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