The (Sport) Performer-Environment System as the Base Unit in Explanations of Expert Performance

ARAÚJO, Duarte and DAVIDS, Keith (2018). The (Sport) Performer-Environment System as the Base Unit in Explanations of Expert Performance. Journal of Expertise, 1 (3).

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In this article we propose that expertise can be best explained as the interaction of the varying constraints/characteristics of the environment and of the individual, framed by the ecological dynamics approach. This rationale of expert performance is contrasted with the typical way that science has approached the study of expertise: i.e., by looking for constraints, located in the individual, either nurture- or nature-based, and related to high performance levels. In ecological dynamics, the base unit of analysis for understanding expertise is the individual-environment system. Illustrating this perspective with Bob Beamon’s 8.90 m long jump, whose 1968 world-record jump was substantially longer than any previous, we argue that expert performers should not be seen as an agglomeration of genes, traits, or mental dispositions and capacities. Rather, expert performance can be captured by the dynamically-varying, functional relationship between the constraints imposed by the environment and the resources of each individual performer.

Item Type: Article
SWORD Depositor: Symplectic Elements
Depositing User: Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited: 10 May 2019 10:09
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 05:20

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