CrossRef citations to date

Influence of visual illusion and attentional focusing instruction in motor performance

ORCID Icon, , ORCID Icon & ORCID Icon
Pages 659-669
Received 05 Apr 2005
Accepted 28 Jan 2018
Published online: 15 Mar 2018


The present study examined the individual and combined influences of two factors that have been shown to benefit motor performance: an external focus of attention and the visual context of a target being aimed for. In a within-subjects design participants completed golf putts using control (C), internal (IN) and external (EX) attentional focus (AF) instructions under target-based visual illusion (perceptually larger (PLT) versus smaller (PST) targets) conditions. Twenty-six novice golfers completed six putts in each counterbalanced condition. Mean radial accuracy (cm) was calculated. Through the use of surrounding distracting visual stimulus, an Ebbinghaus illusion aimed to induce PLT or PST during putting. Verbal instruction directed attention to C (no specific focus), IN (arm movements) or EX (movement effect focus) focuses prior to execution. The Ebbinghaus illusions significantly altered perceived target size. Significant main effects indicated: (1) greater accuracy in EX (PLT: 27.32 vs. PST 31.46 cm) vs. IF (30.50 vs. 39.82 cm) and C (32.11 vs. 36.97 cm); (2) accuracy was benefited when putting towards the PLT vs. PST. No AF × Illusion interaction was evident. Performance was independently affected by AF and target visual context (e.g. perceived target size), suggesting different mechanisms in motor execution: instructions influence the control of movement whereas the target conditions inform motor planning through perceptual and motivational variables.

Log in via your institution

Log in to Taylor & Francis Online

PDF download + Online access

  • 48 hours access to article PDF & online version
  • Article PDF can be downloaded
  • Article PDF can be printed
USD 50.00 Add to cart

Issue Purchase

  • 30 days online access to complete issue
  • Article PDFs can be downloaded
  • Article PDFs can be printed
USD 224.00 Add to cart

* Local tax will be added as applicable

Related Research

People also read lists articles that other readers of this article have read.

Recommended articles lists articles that we recommend and is powered by our AI driven recommendation engine.

Cited by lists all citing articles based on Crossref citations.
Articles with the Crossref icon will open in a new tab.