Expert-novice differences with implement design variations and their affect on success and consistency of movement in a discrete motor task


Discrete motor tasks, such as golf putting, have been tested with various techniques to demonstrate differences between expertise level and implement design. Perception is inherently linked with the motor system in order to allow for the control of these simple movements. The purpose of this experiment was to examine this relationship in a golf putt by comparing kinematic and gaze tracking changes between two expertise levels and two putter types. Four novices (mean age: 26.3y, limited golfing experience) and 4 experts (average age: 25.3y, mean self-reported handicap: 8) were asked to complete 15 putts each with a mallet (Odyssey White Hot Pro 2-ball) putter and blade (Odyssey White Ice 2.0) putter with counterbalanced presentation at a distance of 1-metre. Data was collected with the HS-H6 Eye-Tracker (ASL, Bedford, MA) integrated with Visualeyez Motion Capture System (PTI, Burnaby, BC). The following dependent variables were analyzed with a 2-expertise level (novice/expert) by 2-putter type (blade/mallet) ANOVA: preparation time (s), total stroke time (s), and change in aim line (degrees) between ball address and contact. A significant 2-way interaction was found for preparation time with experts preparing longer than novices. Aim line changes were greater for the mallet putter. In regards to success, experts were 96.6% and 86.2% successful with the blade and mallet putter, respectively. Novices were 77.0% and 81.7% successful with both putters. Relationships between head, eye, and shoulder movement and ocular fixation on key areas will also be addressed. These results will be discussed in relation to previously completed work by Karlsen et al. and Hung. 

Acknowledgments: University of Alberta Endowment Fund for the Future (EFF) Advancement of Scholarship (SAS)