Baseball Keeping your head in the game baseball articles for students Science News for Students
“Believe it or not, most players aren’t very good at seeing the ball,” says Bill Harrison. This Laguna Beach, Calif., optometrist has worked with major league players for more than four decades. And, he notes, “If high school, college, and lower-minor-league players could improve their ability to see the ball with their eyes, it would improve their performance.” degree  A unit of measurement of angles, one three-hundred-and-sixtieth of the circumference of a circle. Nicklaus Fogt of the Ohio State University College of Optometry, in Columbus, led the new study. He and his coworker Aaron Zimmerman asked 15 college baseball players to track incoming pitches. Each player assumed a batting stance and held a bat, but didn’t swing. He just watched as the balls came at him. trajectory   The path taken by a projectile moving through space and time. Every baseball player, from T-ball tots to major leaguers, has heard the same advice: Keep your eye on the ball. For big league batters, that’s no easy task. Pitches scorch in at 145 kilometers per hour. That means they reach the plate less than half a second after leaving a pitcher’s hand. For a bat to connect with the ball, players have to be fast and strong. And, it now turns out, they also have to use their heads. Stephen Ornes lives in Nashville, Tenn., and his family has two rabbits, six chickens and a cat. He has written for  Science News for Students  since 2008 on topics including lightning, feral pigs, big bubbles and space junk. optometry  The practice or profession of examining the eyes for visual defects. J. Cutraro. “ Hey batter, wake up! ”  Science News for Students . June 18, 2008. Baseball Keeping your head in the game baseball articles for students Science News for Students
Baseball Keeping your head in the game baseball articles for students Science News for Students
New experiments found that college baseball players tracked most of an incoming pitch by moving their heads. Here, David Ortiz of the Boston Red Sox watches for an incoming pitch. Educators and Parents, Sign Up for The Cheat Sheet Weekly updates to help you use Science News for Students in the learning environment In a new experiment, college-level baseball players watched incoming pitches. For most of the pitch, the batters relied on small head movements even more than they relied on eye movements. But at the tail end of the pitch, on average, the players’ eyes moved much more than their heads. Each player wore tight goggles fitted with a camera. It tracked its wearer’s eye movements. A helmet containing sensors also measured how much each ballplayer moved his head as he tracked the incoming ball. Two other experiments — one conducted in 1954 and another in 1984 — had measured players’ eye and head positions during pitches. Harrison, baseball articles for students the doctor who was not a part of the new experiment, says the Ohio State tests use additional data, and from thousands of pitches, to confirm those earlier findings. In other words, he says the new study didn’t deliver any new surprises. Indeed, the take-home message was the same, he says: “Batters need to use their heads.” “Our ultimate goal is to see if we can figure out what people do, and then teach novices to do what the experts do,” he says.
Fogt says he’s now working on better understanding the role of head movements. That means, for example, determining whether players who swing at a ball watch in the same way as did those college players in the lab. In follow-up studies, he’ll be investigating the balance between head and eye movement in more realistic settings. In the end, he’d also like to translate such findings into useful training tips. A pitching machine called a Flamethrower flung each pitch from nearly 45 feet away. To limit risks, it hurls tennis balls — not hard balls. These test instruments collected movement data at six different times during a pitch. The amount of movement was measured in degrees. A degree is a unit of angular measurement. One degree represents a small rotation, and 360 degrees represents a full circle. Founded in 2003, Science News for Students is a free, award-winning online publication dedicated to providing age-appropriate science news to learners, parents and educators. The publication, as well as Science News magazine, are published by the Society for Science, a nonprofit 501 membership organization dedicated to public engagement in scientific research and education. Search Open search Close search Science News for Students All Topics Earth Environment Climate Oceans Agriculture Humans Health & Medicine Psychology Archaeology Life Animals Brain Plants Fossils Ecosystems Microbes Genetics Physics Materials Science Space Planets Tech Computing Chemistry Math Science & Society All Topics Life Life Animals Brain Plants Fossils Ecosystems Microbes Genetics Fossils Baby pterosaurs may have been able to fly right after hatching By Carolyn Gramling September 15, 2021 Animals Squirrels use parkour tricks to leap from branch to branch By Jonathan Lambert September 13, 2021 Health & Medicine Discovering the power of placebos By Kathryn Hulick September 9, 2021 Humans Humans Health & Medicine Psychology Archaeology Archaeology A medieval grave may have held a powerful nonbinary person By Bruce Bower September 17, 2021 Psychology How to resist and counter today’s flood of fake news By Alexandra Witze September 16, 2021 Physics Scientists Say: Plasma By Maria Temming September 13, 2021 Earth Earth Environment Climate Oceans Agriculture Materials Science Scientists Say: Aerosol By Bethany Brookshire September 6, 2021 Environment Wildfire smoke seeds the air with potentially dangerous microbes By Megan Sever September 2, 2021 Animals Endangered or just rare? Statistics give meaning to the head counts By Rachel Crowell August 26, 2021 Space Space Planets Space Let’s learn about dark matter By Maria Temming September 14, 2021 Space This image may be the first look at exomoons in the making By Maria Temming August 30, 2021 Space Born in deep shadows? That could explain Jupiter’s strange makeup By Ken Croswell August 6, 2021 Tech Tech Computing Tech Tiny swimming robots may help clean up a microplastics mess By Stephen Ornes September 10, 2021 Tech Let’s learn about artificial intelligence By Maria Temming August 31, 2021 Tech Headphones or earmuffs could replace needles in some disease testing By Sid Perkins August 27, 2021 Health & Medicine Baseball: Keeping your head in the game Successful hitters adjust their head movements to track incoming pitches The data showed that by the time the ball was about 5.3 meters from the Flamethrower — the first measuring point — a player’s eyes had moved only two-tenths of 1 degree. Their heads had moved just 1 degree on average at that point. By the time the ball had traveled about 12 meters , the players’ heads had turned 10 degrees. Meanwhile, their eyes had swiveled a mere 3.4 degrees. But in the last four feet of the pitch, on average, players’ eyes moved through more than 9 degrees — while their heads moved less than 5 degrees. S. Ornes. baseball articles for students