Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Komar, John
Issue Date: 
Fencing is a fast-paced and dynamic combat sport that requires a fencer to strike another with a sword while avoiding being hit. To anticipate and respond to incoming attacks, a fencer must visually identify the most relevant visual cues and integrate this information with existing knowledge (visual-perceptual) such that appropriate motor responses can be selected and executed continuously. This skill of visual-perceptual and motor coupling is known as Visual-perceptual-motor skill (VPMS). Despite VPMS being important in a competition setting, fencing studies tend to isolate the visual-perceptual component from the motor component and study them independently, with most studies focusing on the motor components of fencing (e.g. lunge velocities and reaction times) and few studying the visual-perceptual component (e.g. visual search patterns). This could be due to the practical challenges of replicating the visual-perceptual demands of a competition in a laboratory setting and measuring the visual-perceptual component and motor component simultaneously.

Using a case study approach, this study seeks to quantify the VPMS of Sabre fencers, by analysing their visual search behaviours (VSB) and reaction times (RT) simultaneously in response to virtual simulations of attacks in two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional 3D projections. As 3D projections have more depth cues than 2D projections, this study hypothesizes that fencers would fixate on different parts of the body and have shorter RTs when responding to 3D as compared to 2D projections.

Six sabre fencers, comprising four National team fencers and two fencers with at least a year of fencing experience and who have competed in at least one fencing competition, participated in this study. In the study, a 3D stereoscopic projection system projected 2D and 3D virtual attacks on the screen and participants responded to the projected attacks. A 3D motion capture system was used to capture movement data to compute RT while an eye tracker captured the VSB data.

For VSB data, comparisons between 2 National team fencers showed similar overall VSB characteristics and sharing similar eye fixation locations on the projected opponent’s Head, Trunk, Right shoulder, and Right arm. However, more eye fixation locations were found when fencers responded to 2D compared to 3D projections. No significant differences were found between 2D and 3D projections for RT data. Overall, fencers have slower RTs when responding to step lunge attacks, and right attacks compared to other attacks.

This study suggests that both 2D and 3D projections have similar effects on the VPMS of fencers in response to simple projected attack moves as the stimuli. This may in turn suggest that 2D and 3D projections could be equally effective as training tools to augment fencing training. The study findings also led to better insights into the VPMS of fencers when responding to different attack types which could be used for targeted coaching.

Future research could include more complex scenarios such as projecting attacks from different distances in relation to the fencer, and including more complicated attack moves to tease out whether these can lead to differences in the VPMS of fencers under 2D and 3D conditions.
Issued Date: 
Call Number: 
GV1147 Wan
Appears in Collections:Master of Science (Exercise and Sport Studies)

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
  Restricted Access
5.1 MBAdobe PDFView/Open
Show full item record

Page view(s)

checked on Apr 21, 2021


checked on Apr 21, 2021

Google ScholarTM


Items in DSpace are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.