Decision-making and gaze behavior of basketball players in 3-on-3 Pick'n Roll play
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Introduction. In complex play-situations such as basketball pick’n roll, players must use their vision to read the game, plan an action, and execute a motor response according to the goal. The eye-tracking research in sports offers an understanding of how gaze is related to performance and how athletes make decisions in complex and time-constrained situations. The critical visual information, advanced cue points, or search patterns could be identified, and this information could be used to develop coaching. The purpose of the current study is to assess the differences in gaze behavior between different decisions, defensive plays, and level of field of vision in 3-on-3 basketball pick’n roll. Methods. Total of 22 Finnish national-level male basketball players were measured. In-situ gaze data was analyzed from a total of 24¬–30 pick’n roll trials per individual with Tobii Pro Glasses 2 -eye tracking glasses. The trials were executed against three different defensive plays: Switch, Soft, and Hard Hedge. All trials were recorded with an external GoPro Hero 3 camera. Additionally, the players were tested with vision perimetry for horizontal and vertical field of vision binocularly and separately. The field of vision was used to divide the players into two groups: Wide and Narrow field of vision. Both the decision-making data; made decision, quality and accuracy of decision; as well as the gaze data; fixations to 9 areas of interest, final fixation, fixation to correct option, percentage of viewing time, and two-fixation scan paths; were analyzed from the video image frame-by-frame. All variables were compared across correct and incorrect decisions, court side and groups of field of vision. Results. Defense has a significant impact on frequency and accuracy of decisions (p<.001), and on two-fixation scan paths (p<.05). Decision accuracy was further related to percentage of the viewing time and to fixations to correct option (p<.001), while a made decision had a significant effect only on percentage of the viewing time (p<.001). Field of vision groups differed from each other in percentage of the viewing time, scan paths, and starting fixation of trial. Court side had no significant effect on any of the decision-making or gaze variables. Conclusion. Defense influences decision-making and visual search behavior of experienced players whereas the athlete’s field of vision had no such effect. Advance cue points in basketball pick’n roll are the screener/roller, the screen defender, and the positive space between players. By recognizing these cue points, basketball coaches can help players recognize and use the information prior to actually using the screen. ...
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