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All agency action can be classified in three categories: quasi-adjudication: order making, judicial quasi-legislation: rulemaking executive
Posted On: Nov. 11, 2017
Author: Shipra


Mental Imagery Practice Introduction: Every individual has the ability of imagination. The ability of imagination is not just a happening in human beings but involves a number of processes by the brain and its neurons. Relieving one from unwanted thoughts imagination is necessary. Similarly imagining making an achievement, to demonstrate something highly appreciable, to come out from unpleasant thoughts or occasions is obviously helpful for every one of us. The set of systematic procedures devised by the psychologists to perform in an efficient way is called to be mental imagery practice. Mental Imagery Practice is called as symbolic rehearsal also called visualization or mental rehearsal, is defined as experience that resembles perceptual experience, but which occurs in the absence of the appropriate stimuli for the relevant perception. It is also referred as imagery exercise, covert practice, cognitive rehearsal, imaginable practice, motor imagery, visuomotor training, implicit practice and introspective rehearsal. “ Murphy defined Mental Imagery Practice as sensory experiences in the absence of input Mental imagery”. (1994) “Mental Imagery is the acquisition and maintenance to improve one’s performance”(Richardson, 1967). It is also referred as reinforce implicit processes and rehearse arousal attention. (Cohn, 1990) Whenever we imagine ourselves performing an action in the absence of physical practice, we are said to be using imagery. While most discussions of imagery focus on the visual mode, there exist other modes of experience such as auditory and kinesthetic that are just as important. However, for the purposes of this paper, only visual imagery will be discussed for it is the most relevant mode concerning athletic performance. The reason visual imagery works lies in the fact that when you imagine yourself perform to perfection and doing precisely what you want, you are in turn physiologically creating neural patterns in your brain, just as if you had physical performed the action. These patterns are similar to small tracks engraved in the brain cells, which can ultimately enable an athlete to perform physical feats by simply mentally practicing the move. Hence, mental imagery is intended to train our minds and create the neural patterns in our brain to teach our muscles to do exactly what we want them to do (Porter, 17). Theories of Mental Imagery Practice: Many theories are evident to support mental imagery practice. Psychoneuromotor theory emphasizes on muscular innervations are involved in imagination movement produces activity. (Harris & Robinson,1986). Many studies on mental imagery found that it increases the supplementary motor area in the brain. (Roland et al., 1981). It overlaps neural substrates as to enunciate the process. The Symbolic learning approach suggested by Sackett, explains is about mentally rehearsing the symbolic elements which will reduce the stress or improves performance in any individual. (Sackett,1934). Mental Imagery Practice is used to concentrate on temporal or spatial elements of the skill and it is difficult to clearly define.Mental Imagery Practice has greater gains for cognitive tasks (Driskell et al., 1994). According to attention or arousal theory Mental Imagery Practice primes individual to develops sustained attention (Schmidt, 1982) The dominant theory of mental imagery, suggests that the mental operations that we perform on actual and mental representations are internalizations of physical changes that we perceive as we see the world (Finke and Shepard 1986). In the world, things move in different manners and directions: they change shape, color and texture in regular and predictable ways. For this reason, many mental transformations parallel the changes encoded in forming the mental representations of changing entities. Anticipating these changes is critical to interacting with the world. Anticipating changes entails mentally enacting those changes. The extraordinary flexibility of human mind then allows these mental spatial operations to be applied to imagined stimuli as well as to perceived ones providing the means not only to anticipate states and processes in the world, but also creates new states and processes in the imagination. That said not all the changes we observe in the world are faithfully reflected in mental transformations.(Learn to think spatially, P 43-44) Self -Motivational theory Motivation Imagery is used to help people inspire themselves to action in whatever area of life they need a quick jump-start. Palmer and Neenan at the Centre developed it for Coaching, who found that many of their clients avoided life changes because they feared they would not be able to cope with the stress created. The Bio-informational approach suggests that there are some stimulus which match to the response propositions.(Lang, 1979) It provides a distinct physiological response for the brain. (Hecker & Kaczor, 1988) Mediating Factors: There are certain factors, which mediate the mental imagery practices. In that, age is considered as a mediating factor that implies keen difference in the performance. Age is a mediating factor for mental practice. Younger ones than older ones less practice it. A study done by Jarus & Ratzon in the year 2000, indicates that individuals in the age group of 9 are less likely to practice mental imagery that is limited to 15 seconds where the than older people of age group 65-70 can practice for about 35 seconds. The young adults are the ones who are able to practice this for a very minimum period of time that is 7 seconds, which is very less than the time period of younger ones that is age group of 9. The task and skill level of a person also act as mediating factor to practice an efficient imagery. The individuals who are good in imagination skills and have the ability to organize their thought processes can perform imagery to bring out expected results. They are the symbolic components for a good imagery. (Ryan & Simons, 1983). Mental imagery practice brings in expected outcome for experienced performers (Clark, 1960). It also provides greater benefit for novices on cognitive tasks. (Driskell et al., 1994) Practicing imagery for a longer time period is not necessarily better. There should be 5-min barrier between each MIP session (Twining, 1949). Sackett, in 1935 did a Correlation study between number of sessions and Performance. He key out when the number of MIP sessions increased the reaction time decreased. The number of trials tone also decreases as the number of session increased. They proposed that performance could be better in a lesser time period. Importance of mental imagery: Mental Imagery ability can produce the ability of generation, manipulation; control the environment through mental processes.(Murphy, 994). It also enables a person with accurate clarity and similarity (Cornoldi et al., 1991). It is said that MIP is more beneficial for good imaginers. (Marks, 1977). Mental imagery is a learnt skill where it can be more suitable for high achievers. (Rodgers et al., 1991) Anne Isaac in 1992 conducted a study that examined the influence of mental practice on sports skills. While most of the previous studies on this topic showed positive effects of mental rehearsal, they were not performed in actual field context using subjects who learned actual sport skills rather than just novel motor tasks. Isaac eliminated this problem in her experiment. She also tested the hypothesis of whether people who have better images and control over their images result in better performances. Isaac tested 78 subjects and classified them as novice or experienced trampolines. Then she further divided the two groups into an experimental and control group. She also classified the subjects as either high or low imagers based on initial skill level. Both groups were trained in three skills over a six-week period. In order to prevent confounds, the imagery group was unknown to the experimenter until afterwards. The experimental group physically practiced the skill for 2-1/2 minutes, which was then followed by 5 minutes of mental practice. Lastly, an additional 2-1/2 minutes of physical practice followed the mental practice. Meanwhile, the control group physically worked on the skill for 2-1/2 minutes, which was then followed by 5 minutes of a session trying a mental task of an abstract nature, such as math problems, puzzles, and deleting vowels. Then, 2-1/2 more minutes were spent physically working on the skill again. The outcome of the experiment was as followed: there existed a significant difference in the improvement of the high and low imagers. In both novice and experimental groups where the initial skill ability was similar, the high imagery groups showed significantly more improvement than the low imagery group. Furthermore, there was a significant difference between the experimenter and control groups. Not surprisingly, the experimental group had significantly more improvement than the control group. This study posits that despite the level of skill (beginner or experienced) visual imagery proves effective. (Isaac, 192-198). In a recent experiment conducted by Roure et al, they found six specific autonomic nervous system (ANS) responses that correlated with mental rehearsal, thereby improving sports performance. The subjects were placed into an imagery group and a control group. The task measured in each group was based on their ability to pass an opponents serve to a given teammate, in the sport of volleyball. The experimenters measured the variations of the ANS during the motor skill and during the mental rehearsing sessions. The ANS parameters tested included: skin potential and resistance, skin temperature and heat clearance, instantaneous heart rate, and respiratory frequency. The results of the test revealed a strong correlation between the response in the actual physical tasks (both pre- and post-test volleyball) and during the mental imagery sessions. There existed a difference in the skills between the imagery and the control group, the former being the better. In addition, no clear difference was present between the pre- and post- tests in the control group. This study showed that mental imagery induces a specific pattern of autonomic response. These include: decreased amplitude, shorter duration and negative skin potentials when compared to the control group. As a consequence of the ANS, the imagery group was associated with better performance. In light of this experiment, Roure suggested that metal imagery might help in the construction of schema, which can be reproduced, without thinking, in actual practice (Roure, 99-108). Not only does mental imagery seem to enhance athletic performance, but it has been shown to enhance intrinsic motivation as well. A study in 1995 tested who would spend more time practicing a golf-putting task and who would result in having higher self-efficacy. Thirty-nine beginner golfers were grouped into an imagery or control group. For 3 sessions, both groups were taught how to hit golf balls. The imagery group practiced in an imagery training session designed for this specific golf skill. As a result, the imagery group spent significantly more time practicing the golf-putting task than the control group. In addition, the subjects in the imagery group had more realistic self-expectation, set higher goals to achieve, and adhered more to their training programs outside the experimental setting (Martin, 54-69). Since all of the studies mentioned have focused on adult subjects, I wanted to see if mental imagery had the same effect on children. I found a study, which examined the effects of mental imagery on performance enhancement with 7-10 year old children. In this experiment, table tennis players were divided into three groups. The results indicated that the children who used mental imagery had significant improvement in the accuracy and quality of their shots compared with the control group. This study shows that mental imagery training for children can be beneficial. This could be a perfect opportunity to learn mental skills at an early age, which can ultimately give them greater control over their own destiny. However, this is only one particular study, and more studies on children do need to be conducted (Orlick, 230-241). Effective performance in sports: Grouios, in 1992 identified that diving performance can be improved by practicing mental imagery increased from 0.3 to 3where physical practice is done. Apparently Lejeune et al., in 1994 found out that performance improvement in table tennis is improved from 1 to 35 when mental imagery is practiced. Performance in music: Coffman analyzed the speed of playing music, which shows increase prominently to 8 seconds when practicing mental imagery physical practice. (Coffman, 1990). It has more long-term benefits where it is short-lived practice. In short, it can be practiced for short period and benefit for a longer time. It is consuming less time. (Driskell et al., 1994) Magnitude of effect on performance Though Physical practice helps a person to perform well in sports or difficult cognitive tasks, it is less than the magnitude of the effect of performance when mental imagery is practiced. After reading through numerous studies, mental imagery seems somewhat promising and beneficial. Although it is not as beneficial as physical practice, mental imagery fairs better than no practice at all. Hence, a program with physical practice combined with mental training seems to be the best method. Virtually all of the studies show that mental training improves motor skills. More recently a lot of studies go even further and prove that mental imagery can improve various skills related to sports in actual field contexts. Mental imagery seems to be beneficial to anyone who wants to improve at his or her sport. Summary: Mental imagery is a mental rehearsal process. Many theories support this concept like Psychoneuromotor theory, symbolic theory, attention –arousal theory, motivational theory, bio-informational theory. The mediating factors for mental imagery practice are age, task, skill, practice, and ability, perspective and content. It can peak performance in fields like sport, cognition, and music. It is a short-term practice. It can have adequate control over imagination. The procedures for practicing mental imagery is not very clear. The benefits of mental imagery have proved successful at any level. References: 1. Vernon, D. (2009). Human Potential: Chapter 11 Mental Imagery Practice. Psy Press 2. Bowman, J.J. (1993). Golf mental training room. Mind Plus Muscle. 3. Druckman, D., & Bjork, R.A. (1991). In The Mind’s Eye: Enhancing human performance. Nat Acc Press. 4. Van Raalte, J.L., & Brewer, B. W. (1996). Exploring sport and exercise psychology. Washington DC; London. 5. Learning to think spatially By National Academies Press (U.S.) 6. How to deal with stress by Stephen Palmer & Cary Cooper. 7. Feltz, D. L., & Landers, D. M. (1983). The Effects of Mental Practice on Motor Skill Learning and Performance: A Meta-analysis. Journal of Sport Psychology, 5, 25-57. 8. Isaac, A. R. (1992). Mental Practice- Does it Work in the Field? The Sport Psychologist, 6, 192-198. 9. Murphy, S. (1990). Models of Imagery in Sport Psychology: A Review. Journal of Mental Imagery, 14 (3&4), 153-172. evaluate its use as a mechanism for enhancing performance in humans