Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Internal imagery training in active high jumpers
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Integrative Medical Biology (IMB).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4458-6475
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Radiation Sciences, Diagnostic Radiology. Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Integrative Medical Biology (IMB).
2008 (English)In: Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, ISSN 0036-5564, E-ISSN 1467-9450, Vol. 49, no 2, 133-140 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The main purpose of this study was to examine whether the use of internal imagery would affect high jumping performance for active high jumping athletes. Over a period of six weeks, a group of active high jumpers were trained with an internal imagery program for a total of 72 minutes. This group was compared to a control group consisting of active high jumpers that only maintained their regular work-outs during the same time period. Four variables were measured; jumping height, number of failed attempts, take-off angle, and bar clearance. There was a significant improvement on bar clearance for the group that trained imagery (p < 0.05) but not for the control group. No other differences were found. The results suggest that internal imagery training may be used to improve a component of a complex motor skill. Possible explanations and future recommendations are discussed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Almqvist & Wiksell , 2008. Vol. 49, no 2, 133-140 p.
Keyword [en]
mental practice, internal imagery, training
National Category
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-9416DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9450.2008.00625.xPubMedID: 18352982OAI: diva2:149087
Available from: 2008-04-01 Created: 2008-04-01 Last updated: 2015-10-08Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Imaging imagining actions
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Imaging imagining actions
2008 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Mental training has been studied extensively for the past century but we are still not completely sure how it affects brain and behavior. The aim of this doctoral thesis was to examine one aspect of mental training i.e. motor imagery. In Study I, active high jumpers were trained for 6 weeks using a motor imagery mental training program. We measured behavioral effects in motor parameters such as total height, false attempts, take off angle, and bar clearance. A significant improvement was found on the bar clearance component compared to a control group of high jumpers that did not participate in the mental training program. The results emphasize the importance of using appropriate outcome measures since mental training may affect distinct features of the movement rather than the entire movement. Study II used fMRI (functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging) to examine the neural correlates of imagery for active high jumpers, and also how imagery training affects brain activity. Active high jumpers were compared to a control group of high jumping novices and the results showed that high jumpers were able to activate motor regions, whereas controls used parts of the visual system to perform imagery of the high jump. Thus, we were able to show how important well established motor representations are in order to achieve a neural overlap between imagery and action. In study III we examined the effects after motor, mental and combined motor and mental training on a finger tapping task. Behaviorally, even though mental training improved performance, adding mental training to motor training did not improve the results beyond only using motor training. Imaging results showed that motor and mental training engaged different neural systems, with motor training associated with motor activity and mental training with visual activity. The combination of motor and mental training activated both motor and visual systems. Additionally combining motor and mental training resulted in transfer to an untrained motor sequence and neural data indicated that cerebellum mediated the transfer. The overall findings explain how mental training can be used to improve motor performance and motor parameters. Moreover, it also illustrates that the neural processes underlying such improvements may be distinct from motor training and that the brain may react differently during mental training depending on prior physical experience of the action.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Integrativ medicinsk biologi, 2008. 63 p.
Umeå University medical dissertations, ISSN 0346-6612 ; 1211
mental training, motor training, novices, imaging, athletes, fMRI, internal imagery, motor representation, brain systems, practice, learning, transfer, active
National Category
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-1910 (URN)978-91-7264-658-2 (ISBN)
Public defence
2008-11-28, BiA201, Biologihuset, Umeå Universitet, Umeå, 10:00 (English)
Available from: 2008-11-10 Created: 2008-11-10 Last updated: 2010-01-18Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Other links

Publisher's full textPubMed

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Olsson, Carl-JohanJonsson, BertNyberg, Lars
By organisation
Department of Integrative Medical Biology (IMB)Department of PsychologyDiagnostic Radiology
In the same journal
Scandinavian Journal of Psychology

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Altmetric score

Total: 132 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link