Visual search strategies of baseball batters: eye movements during the preparatory phase of batting

Percept Mot Skills. 2002 Apr;94(2):380-6. doi: 10.2466/pms.2002.94.2.380.


The aim of this study was to analyze visual search strategies of baseball batters during the viewing period of the pitcher's motion. The 18 subjects were 9 experts and 9 novices. While subjects viewed a videotape which, from a right-handed batter's perspective, showed a pitcher throwing a series of 10 types of pitches, their eye movements were measured and analyzed. Novices moved their eyes faster than experts, and the distribution area of viewing points was also wider than that of the experts. The viewing duration of experts of the pitching arm was longer than those of novices during the last two pitching phases. These results indicate that experts set their visual pivot on the pitcher's elbow and used peripheral vision properties to evaluate the pitcher's motion and the ball trajectory.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Attention*
  • Baseball / psychology*
  • Eye Movements*
  • Fixation, Ocular
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Motion Perception
  • Practice, Psychological
  • Visual Fields