Combat Sports

Document Type



This study investigated if occlusion of attacks affects the visual search behaviour (VSB), quiet eye, and reaction time (RT) of Silat athletes. Occlusion (OC) refers to the spatial occlusion of the trunk of a video-projected opponent. It was hypothesized that (i) there would be higher number of fixations in OC, (ii) despite OC, the trunk will remain the primary fixation point, and (iii) longer RT to respond to projected attacks with OC due to the reduction in visual information. Seven male elite Silat athletes performed an evasion followed by a counterattack in response to an opponent projected in two-dimensions for both non-occluded (NOC) and OC conditions. A Dikablis eye tracker and a 12-camera VICON MX system were used to determine the variables of interest. Results indicated fewer number of fixations in OC while the trunk remains the area of interest regardless of occlusion conditions. No differences in RT were observed. Occlusion may have decreased the need for visual scanning and reiterates the trunk as the primary area of focus. Occlusion may be used as a training tool for sub-elite athletes, cueing them to reduce cognitive load on less crucial information, mimicking the VSB of elite athletes thus potentially improving performance.