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Motor Performance

Consider the methods for measuring motor performance and for classifying motor skills. Given the relationship of the various classifications and measurement of motor performance, is it important to distinguish between actions, movements, and neuromuscular process?

Consider the methods for measuring motor performance and for classifying motor skills. Given the relationship of the various classifications and measurement of motor performance, is it important to distinguish between actions, movements, and neuromuscular process? Why or why not?


In regards to the relationship between the various classifications and measurement of motor performance, it is very important to distinguish between the context of actions, movements, and neuromuscular processes. Within the classification of motor skills and motor behavior, there are three unique categories including skill, movements, and neuromotor processes. Magill and Anderson (2014) Further solidify our need to distinguish between these different elements because there are even further subdivisions and conversations within each construct. For example, skill maintains two definitions that are widely excepted and appropriate. It can refer to an activity which has a specific goal, or an adjective which describes the quality of performance executed (Magill & Anderson, 2014).


"Within the classification of motor skills and motor behavior, there are three unique categories including skill, movements, and neuromotor processes.

The authors further discuss how movements in the same way offer two distinguishable differences. Movements are referred to as repeated patterns of motion within the human body along the joints in particular portions of the body. This is accomplished by either a many-to-one or a one-to-many approach, with movements and outcome goals being directly/indirectly related (Magill & Anderson, 2014).


Finally, unlike the last two constructs, neuromotor processes originate largely at the cellular level and they attempt to describe actions which originate particularly within the central and peripheral nervous system. Often times, these cannot be detected by the human eye. An example of this was demonstrated in a study of indigenous populations by Marks et el (2007), in which there was a strong association between higher baseline levels and growth in mathematical and reading skills, promoting positive academic skill development for the children in the study.


"Finally, unlike the last two constructs, neuromotor processes originate largely at the cellular level and they attempt to describe actions which originate particularly within the central and peripheral nervous system.

Among the menu of reasons Magill & Anderson (2014) give for the importance of the distinguishing elements, perhaps the most important is that researchers will evaluate these particular motor skills and processes with various measures. Performance outcome measures and performance production measures, such as in-game statistics, EEG, EMG, and other measurables, can only be applied to certain situations. For example, using an EMG to measure Kobe Bryant’s effectiveness on the basketball court may not be as effective (or even valid) as say determining his points per game average (ppg). Beckman et al (2014) in their study regarding motor skill and choking under pressure confirmed that a performance measurable such as hemisphere-specific priming would probably not apply to performance based on constructs such as strength or stamina. Identifying appropriate measures with appropriate classifications can only be done if skills, movements, and neuromotor processes are defined and deduced to very specific tangibles.


References:

Beckmann, J., Gröpel, P., & Ehrlenspiel, F. (2013). Preventing motor skill failure through hemisphere-specific priming: Cases from choking under pressure. Journal Of Experimental Psychology: General, 142(3), 679-691. doi:10.1037/a0029852


Magill, R. A., & Anderson, D. I. (2014). Motor learning and control: concepts and applications (10th ed.). Boston: McGraw-Hill.


Marks, A., & Coll, C. (2007). Psychological and demographic correlates of early academic skill development among American Indian and Alaska Native youth: A growth modeling study. Developmental Psychology, 43(3), 663-674. doi:10.1037/0012-1649.43.3.663






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