About this Research Topic
Decision-making in sports plays an important role in individual performance. When compared to novices, experts are described as being able to read the game better, to demonstrate superior game intelligence and appearing as if they have all the time in the world to perform an action. Generally, decision-making describes the individual capability to select functional actions to solve a given issue or to achieve a specific task goal from a given number of possibilities. Therefore, it has been pointed out that decision making relies on perception, anticipation, attention, and memory. However, considering that rationality is bounded, especially in some decisions conducted in a very short period of time, it seems that decision making requires the study of both the environment and the player. In fact, although planning an action before the game could influence decisions, the behavior is always dependent on the environment, i.e. an action is not a mechanical outcome. In this sense, decision-making in sports is simultaneously pre-planned and emergent behavior, as it results in an attuned perception of an affordance (opportunity to act) that requires training to both perceive and act upon. Consequently, both cognitive and ecological psychology provide powerful and complementary insights.
While there is much research that explores decision making from a number of different perspectives in sport there are still significant gaps in our knowledge and understanding of the mechanisms and processes involved. Research approaches to decision-making are vast and varied, including the analysis of movement and response accuracy, decision time, visual search, declarative and/or processual knowledge, among other items. However, despite being a well-established research topic, there are still missing studies delivering novel approaches and new evidence concerning the development of decision-making in youth players or athletes, as well as reports of training programs that may describe appropriate approaches for the development of this capability.
Therefore, the aim of this Frontiers Research Topic entitled “Decision-making in youth sport” is to provide in-depth knowledge in the form of original work, review articles, and meta-analyses about the following aspects of exercise psychology:
• Expertise and decision-making
• Visual search behaviors
• Response and movement accuracy
• Decision time
• Tactical knowledge and behavior
• Decision-making training programs
• Development of decision-making in youth players
• Effects of different sports at decision-making
• Interindividual variability in decision-making
Keywords: Decision-making, expertise, behavior, visual search, youth players
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.