Article Title



C Bentz
J Tan


C. Bentz & J. Tan
Bethel University, St. Paul, MN

Purpose: Motor imagery (MI) has been shown to improve performance across many disciplines. It is hypothesized that MI causes increased power output; practice of MI reinforces and improves motor program pathways by increasing motor unit recruitment and thereby increasing power. The purpose of this study is to examine the acute effects of motor imagery as it pertains to power and distance in jumping and throwing protocols. Methods: Twenty-three male collegiate soccer players (mean age 19.9 ± 1.14 SD) were recruited as participants from Bethel University. Subjects completed three separate sessions of testing: a familiarization period followed by a pre and post-test. Each session consisted of subjects completing the squat jump (SJ) and countermovement jump (CMJ) (5 repetitions each), as well as the rotational and overhead throw (3 repetitions each). A three-dimensional accelerometer (Myotest) was used to measure height (cm) and power (Watts/kg) in the jumps; the throws were measured by distance (meters). MI intervention for the experimental group was completed immediately before each post-test assessment. Results: An independent samples t-test using SPSS software revealed no statistically significant increase in the experimental group compared to the control group at the p<.05 level in any of the exercises (Rotational p=.0.138; Overhead p=0.055; SJ Height p=0.413; SJ Power p=0.364; CMJ Height p=0.052; CMJ Power p=0.235).

Conclusion: The data analysis implies that short-term MI intervention does not significantly improve throwing and jumping ability. This may support the idea that facilitation of neuromuscular pathways takes a longer period of time to synthesize and train, thereby limiting the measurable effects of acute MI. Further research aimed at determining the minimum time required for significant effects resulting from MI implementation will help influence its practical application as a successful intervention.

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