Tell them they need good vision
Did you know that studies have revealed that telling someone they need good vision to perform a particular task can actually improve their vision? It’s true. Here’s how one study worked. The experimenters organized two randomly selected groups of Air Force ROTC students at a university.
All members in both groups took a standard eye test.
The first group was told that they were going to be the pilots in a flight simulator and needed to be able to identify various types of aircraft, a very important skill for fighter pilots. The quicker they identify planes the quicker they can spot friend or foe. They were dressed up as real pilots and once again told how important it was for pilots to have good vision.
The second group was told what the flight simulator did but were not told to be the actual pilot during the simulation. They were basically along for the ride and just experienced the simulater as an observer. They also were told that pilots needed good vision to correctly identify markings on various types of aircraft. They were not dressed as pilots.
During the simulation, both groups looked at and were told to identify letters on the various planes and told to recite them. What they did not know was that the size of the letters on the planes matched those on the eye test they had taken earlier. The results? 40% of those in the first group IMPROVED their vision scores. Not a single member of the second group improved theirs.
The conclusion was that even something like your vision can improve based on what the situation requires. If the “pilots” were told they needed good vision to complete the task, their vision was more likely to improve. If they were told pilots in general need good vision, their own vision stayed the same.
Can we relate this to baseball? I think we can. If vision is so important to hitting, keep telling your players before games how important their vision needs to be in order to properly recognize the pitch and hit it.
Who knows … it may even improve their eye sight!
Tomorrow’s post: Slow is smooth, smooth is fast