Rapid identification of sound direction in blind footballers
Earlier studies have demonstrated that blind footballers are more accurate in identifying sound direction with less front–back confusion than sighted and blind non-football playing individuals. However, it is unknown whether blind footballers are faster than sighted footballers and nonathletes in identifying sound direction using auditory cues. Here, the present study aimed to investigate the auditory reaction times (RTs) and response accuracy of blind footballers during auditory RT tasks, including the identification of sound direction. Participants executed goal-directed stepping towards the loudspeaker as quickly and accurately as possible after identifying the sound direction. Simple, two-choice, and four-choice auditory RT tasks were completed. The results revealed that blind footballers had shorter RTs than sighted footballers in the choice RT tasks, but not in the simple RT task. These findings suggest that blind footballers are faster in identifying sound direction based on auditory cues, which is an essential perceptual-cognitive skill specific to blind football.
KeywordsBlind football Reaction time Sound localization Auditory cues Information processing
This study was supported, in part, by a grant from the Advanced Research Initiative for Human High Performance (ARIHHP), University of Tsukuba. This study was also supported by the JSPS Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (C) [Grant Number 17KT0133].
- Akhani PN, Gosai H, Mendpara S, Harsoda JM (2015) Mental chronometry in table tennis players and football players: who have faster reaction time? Int J Basic Appl Physiol 4:53–57Google Scholar
- Arnaud L, Gracco V, Ménard L (2018) Enhanced perception of pitch changes in speech and music in early blind adults. Neuropsychologia 117:261–270. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2018.06.009 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Chen Q, Zhang M, Zhou X (2006) Spatial and nonspatial peripheral auditory processing in congenitally blind people. NeuroReport 17:1449–1452. https://doi.org/10.1097/01.wnr.0000233103.51149.52 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Gavkare AM, Nanaware NL, Surdi AD (2013) Auditory reaction time, visual reaction time and whole body reaction time in athletes. Ind Med Gaz 6:214–219Google Scholar
- Helsen WF, Starkes JL (1999) A multidimensional approach to skilled perception and performance in sport. Appl Cogn Psych 13:1–27. https://doi.org/10.1002/(SICI)1099-0720(199902)13:1%3c1:AID-ACP540%3e3.0.CO;2-T CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- International Blind Sports Federation Definition of Visual Classes. http://www.ibsasport.org/classification/. Accessed 29 June 2019
- Letowski TR, Letowski ST (2012) Auditory spatial perception: auditory localization. Army Research Laboratory Aberdeen Proving Ground MD Human Research and Engineering Directorate. http://www.dtic.mil/cgi-bin/GetTRDoc?AD=ADA562292/. Accessed 23 Dec 2018
- Lewald J (2013) Exceptional ability of blind humans to hear sound motion: implications for the emergence of auditory space. Neuropsychologia 51:181–186. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2012.11.017 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Middlebrooks JC, Green DM (1991) Sound localization by human listeners. Annu Rev Psychol 42:135–159. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.ps.42.020191.001031 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Moore BC (2013) An introduction to the psychology of hearing, 6th edn. Brill, Boston, pp 245–246Google Scholar
- Wan CY, Wood AG, Reutens DC, Wilson SJ (2010) Early but not late-blindness leads to enhanced auditory perception. Neuropsychologia 48:344–348. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2009.08.016 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Yildirim S, Yuksel R, Doganay S, Gul M, Bingol F, Dane S (2013) The benefits of regular physical activity on hearing in visually impaired adolescents. Eur J Basic Med Sci 3:17–21Google Scholar