Shawn Worthy

Publication Date


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First Advisor

McCanne, Thomas R.

Degree Name

M.A. (Master of Arts)

Legacy Department

Department of Psychology


Motor ability--Testing; Muscle contraction--Testing


The present study examined the effects of dart pitching ability (more-accurate and less-accurate pitchers) on muscle tension in the left and right biceps and calves while imagining pitching darts. It was hypothesized that during the imaginal trials the subjects who were more accurate at pitching darts would display greater increases in muscle tension than those who were less accurate. Additionally, it was hypothesized that differences between the two groups would be manifested only in the right (dominant) arm and not the left. The present study used performance on a task as an independent variable and employed a fine-grained second-by-second analyses of the data, which were both novel approaches in the study of imagery. Twenty-six males participated in this study. All subjects were screened and grouped according to dart-pitching ability. Subjects were also yoked according to imagery ability and dart-pitching practice. They were recalled and muscle tension of both of the biceps and calves was monitored while the subjects imagined pitching a dart over a series of 24 trials (three blocks of eight). Groups was a between- subjects factor and Blocks, Trials, and Seconds were within-subjects factors. In the present study, dart-pitching ability did not have an effect on muscular tension in either biceps. Additionally, no specific muscular activity was found during the imaginary process, contrary to the findings of earlier studies. Results are discussed in relation to methodological effects on the relationship between imagery and muscular activation.


Includes bibliographical references (pages [63]-67)


81 pages




Northern Illinois University

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