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Alan Yee, Benjamin Thompson, Kristine Dalton; Superior dynamic visual acuity performance of athletes. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2017;58(8):5424.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Dynamic visual acuity (VA) is the ability to resolve fine details of a moving target which requires spatial resolution and accurate oculomotor control. Individuals who engage in activities in highly dynamic visual environments may have superior dynamic visual acuity. We tested the hypothesis that athletes and action video game players (VGPs) have superior dynamic VA to controls.
A cross-sectional study examined static VA, and dynamic VA in thirty emmetropic participants (10 athletes, 10 VGPs, and 10 controls). Athletes were members of varsity teams. VGPs played action video games four times per week for a minimum of one hour per day. Controls did not play sports or video games. Static VA (logMAR) was tested with an Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study chart. Dynamic VA (logMAR; moV&, V&mp Vision Suite) was tested with Tumbling E optotypes that moved either horizontally (left to right) or randomly (Brownian motion) at 5°/s, 10°/s, 20°/s and 30°/s. A one-way independent measures ANOVA was used to test for group differences in static VA. A repeated measures ANOVA was used to test for group and speed differences in dynamic VA.
Horizontal dynamic VA varied significantly with target speed (F(3,27) = 95.095, p<0.05) and differed between groups (F(2,27) = 3.375, p<0.05) whereby VA was significantly lower (better) in athletes compared to controls (p<0.05). No significant differences were found between athletes and VGPs (p=0.264) or VGPs and controls (p=0.598). There was no interaction between target speed and group (F(6,27) = 0.719, p=0.635). Random dynamic VA also varied significantly with target speed (F(3,27) = 21.837, p<0.05) but there was no effect of group (F(2,27) = 2.801, p=0.078) and no interaction (F(6,27) = 0.746, p=0.614). Static VA was not different between the groups (F(2,27) = 0.06, p=0.97).
Athletes, but not VGPs, exhibited superior dynamic VA for horizontally moving targets compared to controls. This effect was not present for randomly moving targets. Unlike random motion, horizontal motion follows a predictable path and athletes may utilize this predictive information more effectively than controls.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2017 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Baltimore, MD, May 7-11, 2017.
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