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Effect of Attentional Focus Strategies on Peak Force and Performance in the Standing Long Jump

Wu, Will F. W.1; Porter, Jared M.2; Brown, Lee E.3

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: May 2012 - Volume 26 - Issue 5 - p 1226–1231
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e318231ab61
Original Research

Abstract: Wu, WFW, Porter, JM, and Brown, LE. Effect of attentional focus strategies on peak force and performance in the standing long jump. J Strength Cond Res 26(5): 1226–1231, 2012—Significant benefits in standing long jump performance have been demonstrated when subjects were provided verbal instructions that promoted an external focus of attention compared with an internal focus of attention, suggesting differences in ground reaction forces. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate peak force and jump performance between internal and external focus of attention strategies. Untrained subjects were assigned to both experimental conditions in which verbal instructions were provided to promote either an external or internal focus of attention. All subjects completed a total number of 5 standing long jumps. The results of the study demonstrated that the external focus of attention condition elicited significantly greater jump distance (153.6 ± 38.6 cm) than the internal focus of attention condition (139.5 ± 46.7 cm). There were no significant differences observed between conditions in peak force (1429.8 ± 289.1 N and 1453.7 ± 299.7 N, respectively). The results add to the growing body of literature describing the training and learning benefits of an external focus of attention. Practitioners should create standardized verbal instructions using an external focus of attention to maximize standing long jump performance.

1Department of Kinesiology, California State University, Long Beach, California

2Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, Illinois

3California State University, Fullerton, California

Address correspondence to Will F.W. Wu, wwu2@csulb.edu.

© 2012 National Strength and Conditioning Association