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J Sport Exerc Psychol. 2007 Aug;29(4):479-97.

Old dogs, new tricks: training the perceptual skills of senior tennis players.

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Department of Applied Physiology and Kinesiology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA.


The purpose of the study was to determine whether multidimensional perceptual-cognitive skills training, including situational awareness, anticipation, and decision making, improves on-court performance in older adults when compared with a physical training program, including stroke and footwork development. Senior tennis players (N = 27) were randomly assigned to one of three groups: perceptual-cognitive skills training, technique-footwork training, or no training. Results indicated that participants receiving perceptual-cognitive skills training had significantly faster response speeds, higher percentage of accurate responses, and higher percentage of performance decision making in posttest match situations. Findings provide clear evidence that perceptual-cognitive skills can be trained in aged individuals. Implications and suggestions for future research are offered.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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