Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2020) 19, 529 - 534

Research article
Computerized Cognitive Training with Minimal Motor Component Improves Lower Limb Choice-Reaction Time
Jan Wilke , Oliver Vogel
Author Information
Department of Sports Medicine and Exercise Physiology, Goethe University, Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Jan Wilke
✉ Department of Sports Medicine, Goethe University, Ginnheimer Landstraße 39. D-60487 Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Publish Date
Received: 18-02-2020
Accepted: 12-06-2020
Published (online): 13-08-2020
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The role of cognitive training in sports has experienced a recent surge in popularity. However, there is a paucity of longitudinal trials examining the effectiveness of related methods. This study aimed to investigate the impact of a cognitive training with minimal motor components on lower limb choice-reaction performance. A total of 44 healthy individuals (26.4 ± 3.7 years, 27 males) were randomly allocated to a cognitive training (CT) or an inactive control group (CON). The CT group participants, three times per week, engaged in a computerized exercise program targeting skills such as attention, reaction time, processing speed or inhibition control. Before and after the 6-week intervention period, lower limb choice-reaction time was assessed using the Quick Feet Board device. An ANCOVA of the post-intervention values, controlling for baseline data, demonstrated superior unilateral choice-reaction performance (stance on dominant leg) in the CT group (p = 0.04, r = 0.31). Conversely, no difference was found for the bilateral component of the test (p > .05). Off-court cognitive training may represent a suitable method to enhance reactive motor skills in athletes.

Key words: Neurocognition, reaction, athletes, computerized, inhibition control

           Key Points
  • There is a lack of evidence regarding the question as to whether cognitive training with minimal motor component has transfer effects for motor performance
  • A six-week computerized cognitive training intervention enhances lower limb choice-reaction performance in healthy active adults
  • The observed effects may help to increase sport-specific performance.
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