Advertisement

Naturwissenschaften

, Volume 93, Issue 2, pp 97–101 | Cite as

Judging where a ball will go: the case of curved free kicks in football

  • Cathy M. CraigEmail author
  • Eric Berton
  • Guillaume Rao
  • Laure Fernandez
  • Reinoud J. Bootsma
Short Communication

Abstract

This study examined whether adding spin to a ball in the free kick situation in football affects a professional footballer’s perception of the ball’s future arrival position. Using a virtual reality set-up, participants observed the flight paths of aerodynamically realistic free kicks with (±600 rpm) and without sidespin. With the viewpoint being fixed in the centre of the goal, participants had to judge whether the ball would have ended up in the goal or not. Results show that trajectories influenced by the Magnus force caused by sidespin gave rise to a significant shift in the percentage of goal responses. The resulting acceleration that causes the ball to continually change its heading direction as the trajectory unfolds does not seem to be taken into account by the participants when making goal judgments. We conclude that the visual system is not attuned to such accelerated motion, which may explain why goalkeepers appear to misjudge the future arrival point of such curved free kicks.

Keywords

Flight Path Lateral Acceleration Magnus Force Ball Trajectory Interceptive Action 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank the players and coaches from Olympique de Marseille, AC Milan, Schalke 04 and Bayer Leverkusen who participated in this study; Adidas-Salamon Germany who facilitated contact with the clubs, and staff at Milan Lab, Milanello, Italy. The authors also thank Cédric Goulon and Florian Laborde for their assistance in creating the virtual environment.

Supplementary material

114_2005_71_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (153 kb)
S1 (PDF 157 kb)
S2

(MPEG 2,511 kb)

S3

(MPEG 2,353 kb)

S4

(MPEG 1,676 kb)

References

  1. Abernethy B (1991) Visual search strategies and decision-making in sport. Int J Sport Psychol 22:189–210Google Scholar
  2. Babler TG, Dannemiller JL (1993) Role of image acceleration in judging landing location of free-falling projectiles. J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 19:15–31CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Bahill AT, Karnavas WJ (1993) The perceptual illusion of baseball’s rising fastball and breaking curveball. J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 19:3–14CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bootsma RJ, Van Wieringen PCW (1990) Timing an attacking forehand drive in table-tennis. J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 16:21–29CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bray D, Kerwin DG (2003) Modelling the flight of a soccer ball in a direct free kick. J Sport Sci 21:75–85CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Brouwer AM, Brenner E, Smeets BJ (2002) Perception of acceleration with short presentation times: can acceleration be used in interception? Percept Psychophys 64:1160–1168PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Carré MJ, Asai T, Akatsuka T, Haake SJ (2002) The curve kick of a football II: flight through the air. Sports Eng 4:193–200CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. de Mestre N (1990) The mathematics of projectiles in sport. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  9. Grant AG, Williams AM, Reilly T (1999) Analysis of goals scored in the 1998 World Cup. J Sport Sci 17:826–827CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Grealy MA, Craig CM, Bourdin C, Coleman S (2004) Judging time intervals using a model of perceptuo-motor control. J Cogn Neurosci 16:1185–1195CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Lee DN, Young DS, Reddish PE, Lough S, Clayton TMH (1983) Visual timing in hitting an accelerating ball. Q J Exp Psychol A 35:333–346PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Lee DN, Georgopoulos AP, Clark MJO, Craig CM, Port NL (2001) Guiding contact by coupling the taus of gaps. Exp Brain Res 139:151–159CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. McBeath MK (1990) The rising fastball—baseball’s impossible pitch. Perception 19:545–552PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. McIntyre J, Zago M, Berthoz A, Lacquaniti F (2001) Does the brain model Newton’s laws? Nat Neurosci 4:693–694CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. McLeod P, Dienes Z (1996) Do fielders know where to go to catch the ball or only how to get there? J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 22:531–543CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Mehta RD (1985) Aerodynamics of sports balls. Annu Rev Fluid Mech 17:151–189CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Montagne G, Laurent M, Durey A, Bootsma RJ (1999) Movement reversals in ball catching. Exp Brain Res 129:87–92CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Peper CE, Bootsma RJ, Mestre DR, Bakker FC (1994) Catching balls: how to get the hand to the right place at the right time. J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 20:591–612CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Port NL, Lee D, Dassonville P, Georgopoulos AP (1997) Manual interception of moving targets.1. Performance and movement initiation. Exp Brain Res 116:406–420PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Regan D (1997) Visual factors in hitting and catching. J Sport Sci 15:533–558CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Shanon B (1976) Aristotelianism, Newtonianism and the physics of the layman. Perception 5:241–243PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Todd JT (1981) Visual information about moving objects. J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 7:795–810CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Werkhoven P, Snippe HP, Toet A (1992) Visual processing of optic acceleration. Vision Res 32:2313–2329CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  24. Williams M, Griffiths IW (2002) A kinematic analysis of the prevalence of pre-impact cues in the football penalty kick. J Sport Sci 20:74Google Scholar
  25. Zago M, Lacquaniti F (2005) Cognitive, perceptual and action-oriented representations of falling objects. Neuropsychologia 43:178–188CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cathy M. Craig
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Eric Berton
    • 1
  • Guillaume Rao
    • 1
  • Laure Fernandez
    • 1
  • Reinoud J. Bootsma
    • 1
  1. 1.Movement and PerceptionUniversity of the MediterraneanMarseilleFrance
  2. 2.School of PsychologyQueen’s University BelfastBelfastNorthern Ireland

Personalised recommendations