Visual anticipation is vital for performance in several domains such as driving, military, and high-speed interceptive sports, as it enables performers to handle severe time constraints. There has been little investigation into individual differences of anticipation skill transfer within a domain, which can guide training of anticipation to improve performance.


The purpose of this study was to investigate individual differences in the transfer of anticipation within a domain, specifically anticipation of the field hockey penalty corner drag-flick across different opponents.


Eight female Australian international and national field hockey goalkeepers participated. Goalkeepers completed female and male opponent penalty corner drag-flick temporal occlusion tests that presented contextual defensive runner positioning relative to the penalty spot, drag-flicker kinematics, and ball flight.


Drag-flick movement time and ball velocity were significantly different across female and male opponents confirming that a transfer continuum existed. Five goalkeepers could transfer integration of runner contextual and drag-flicker kinematic information to anticipate loose runs above chance from female to male opponent tests. None of the goalkeepers could transfer integration of contextual and kinematic information for the tight runs across female to male opponents.


An individual differences approach with truly expert performers provided unique insights into the mechanism of anticipation transfer within a domain. The findings of this study contribute to theoretical and applied knowledge, which can guide the training of anticipation skill to prepare individuals for superior performance.


Individual differences, Temporary occlusion, Field hockey goalkeeper, Transfer continuum, Visual anticipation

Available for download on Wednesday, February 01, 2023

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