Psychophysiological measurements in badminton


PhD, Associate Professor R.F. Akhtarieva1
Yu.K. Zhestkova1
PhD, Associate Professor R.R. Shapirova1
PhD S.R. Sharifullina1
1Yelabuga Institute of Kazan Federal University, Yelabuga

 Keywords: students, badminton, computerized Activatiometer AC-95 Test System, psychophysiological measurements.


Introduction. The psychomotor system determines the correlation between various manifestations of man’s motor abilities and his psychic self-regulation. Voluntary movements are performed being controlled by conscious mind, but a certain conation is required from a person to display his motor properties. Given this, the psychological and physiological mechanisms of motor activity control, i.e. anything that is reflected in the display of various psychomotor qualities, can be attributed to the psychomotor sphere [2].

The psychomotor system performance indicators, characterizing the high-speed motor reaction, include: rate of movement, time of muscle contraction and relaxation, and reaction time to a signal. These speed parameters depend on the properties of the athlete’s nervous system, mobility of the nervous processes, their lability [2]. There are certain specific characteristics of these indicators detected both in vitro and in vivo [1].

The hemispheric activation (HA) is determined by the degree of excitation and the number of involved neurons. The functional asymmetry of the cerebral hemispheres is evidenced by the fact that the degree of activation of one hemisphere prevails over the other. At the same time, equal activation of both hemispheres suggests the interhemispheric balance. In particular, the prevalence of abstract-logical thinking over emotional-imaginative one is proved by the prevailing activation of the left hemisphere in right-handed athletes. Conversely, the prevailing activation of the right hemisphere indicates the predominance of emotional-imaginative thinking over abstract-logical one. The results of the diagnostics are used to determine type of thinking, peculiarities of situational thinking in athletes when choosing their training methods, development and improvement of sports results.

Methods and structure of the study. We applied computerized Activatiometer AC-95 Test System to conduct a system diagnostics in man. We studied situation-specific mental responses, responses to a moving object (RMO) and the time and space controls. We chose these parameters due to the fact that a badminton coach being fully aware of the psychophysiological characteristics of his players can recommend his athletes a more effective game strategy. Subject to the study were the students of various faculties of Yelabuga Institute of Kazan Federal University practicing badminton, with the training experience from 1 to 2 years (n=48). The study was conducted in September 2016; the testing took less than 1 hour to prevent the development of fatigue in the respondents.

Results and discussion. The determined quantitative characteristics were interpreted as follows: high situation-specific response (SSR) rates (in 48% of the sample) meant that the mental tone and mental tension indices were significantly above the statistical average, that is, they were increased. The mean SSR rates (in 37% of the subjects) testified to a normal mental state. The mental performance rates below average (in 15% of the sample) indicated that the subjects’ mental tone and energy indices were below the statistical average.

The next indicator under study was RMO. Badminton is a sport, in which reaction time to a moving object is of utmost importance for an athlete. The RMO values can serve as an indicator of the athlete’s readiness for successful performance. The higher the athlete’s level of fitness and technical skills, the higher the accuracy in the RMO test. 75% of the subjects demonstrated very high RMO indices. Very high RMO indices testify to the high level of the athlete’s fitness and technical skills and, at the same time, are indicative of his excellent functional state. High accuracy of RMO was registered in 19% of the subjects, which also indicated the athletes’ good fitness level. 6% of the sample demonstrated the average RMO indices.

Individual tendency to react to a moving object is a prevailing tendency of RMO to either preact or delay. Let us consider the RMO test results (see Figure 1).


Figure 1. Prevailing tendency of RMO to delay and preact


The figure illustrates the results of the study of the late-trended RMO. The late-trended RMO was rated average, low and poor in 6%, 29% and 65% of the sample, respectively. There were no high or very high RMO test rates, which can be explained by the fact that, during the training sessions, the students were taught such elements of training exercises as juggling, playing with an opponent with a ball, tennis ball throw against the wall.

Let us consider the following indicator – the tendency of RMO to preact, with the results of the study shown in Figure 1.

According to the findings, none of the subjects had a very high tendency of RMO to preact. The average tendency of RMO to preact was expressed in 23% of the subjects. 29% of them had a below average (low) RMO rate. 48% of the athletes demonstrated poor RMO rates.

The indicator of individual tendency of RMO confirmed the previously obtained data – the tendency to preact and the tendency to delay. We received the following characteristics of the individual RMO tendency: a strong individual tendency of RMO was expressed in 12% of the subjects, the tendency to preact - in 46% of the athletes, the tendency to delay - in 38% of the athletes with only two subjects having a slight delay (4%).

The next indicator was the time and space controls - the distance judging ability [4]. It is a basic ability for many activities that involves accurate visual perception, evaluation of spatial segments. 77% of the athletes had a good eye, 17% demonstrated an excellent result, 6% - the average level of the distance judging ability. The mean error varied from 1.9 (excellent result) to 3.56. Usually, badminton athletes with the training experience of at least several years are found to have a good eye. According to our observations, the distance judging ability is sometimes negatively affected by the insufficient illumination of the sports hall.

We ran the dominant hand diagnostics. It is clear that people with a congenital dominant right hand will be more precise, perform movements faster with their right hand, and those with the dominant left hand - with the left hand [4]. According to the results of the study, the congenital index of the dominant right hand was found in 48% of the subjects, left hand - 42%, ambidexters - 10%. The average error of the left hand predominated in the right-handers, the average error of the right hand - in the left-handers. Ambidexters had the same average error.

Conclusions. Despite the fact that one and the same motor quality can be leading in different sports, in each of them this quality has its specific direction; also, it is the use of specific training means with due regard to the athlete’s psychophysiological characteristics that can develop a particular psychomotor quality.

The sports results demonstrated by badminton players depend on many indicators, in general:

  • Reaction to a moving object is the athlete’s response, which is considered an independent indicator of speed of his motor reaction. The information on the movement of the badminton shuttlecock and how the player holds it can be obtained from the observations of the opponent's pose, facial expressions, preparatory actions, his behaviour pattern in general. Based on these calculations, the athlete determines the direction and speed of his movement. It is not the absolute reaction speed, but its timeliness that plays a leading role in RMO.

  • The accurate space control ability is provided by the well-developed distance judging ability. Both in professional activity and everyday life, good distance judging ability makes it possible to estimate the spatial segments not only accurately but also fast. This testifies to both good visual memory and attention concentration of a person, and a well-developed distance judging ability. The study found that the distance judging ability highly depends on the athlete’s fitness level. That is why, in most cases, if necessary, the distance judging ability can be significantly improved by training until an excellent result is achieved. Along with the instrumental methods, the distance judging ability can be improved in different terrain and weather conditions by determining distances, comparing results with exact (known) distance indices.

  • The results of the diagnostics of the dominant hand should be used to develop and build sports skills in those sports related to unilateral motor actions. Since retrained left-handers act like right-handers, their individual activity style may not be as effective and may require correction. If we change their stance, hand, the retrained left-handers are able to improve this skill, increase accuracy, agility by means of their genetic reserves [4].

The study of the psychomotor characteristics of badminton players made it possible to select the necessary means and methods aimed to optimize their training process and play activity.



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  2. Ilyin E.P. Psikhologiya sporta [Sport psychology]. St. Petersburg: Piter publ., 2009.

  3. Fukin A.I., Fukina L.I. Diagnostika psikhicheskogo i fizicheskogo razvitiya yunykh sportsmenov [Diagnostics of mental and physical development of young athletes]. Naberezhnye Chelny: KamPI publ., 2000.

  4. Tsagarelli Yu.A. Sistemnaya diagnostika cheloveka i razvitie psikhicheskikh funktsiy. Uchebnoe posobie [System diagnostics of man and development of mental functions. Study guide]. Kazan: Poznanie publ., 2009.


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Badminton is ranked high among modern academic sports as it helps offset physical inactivity of the academic process and requires versatile motor skills. We applied computerized Activatiometer AC-95 Test System to obtain the psychophysiological measurements of the badminton players, analyze them and provide the study findings and recommendations. The test system was designed to rate situation-specific mental responses, responses to moving object (RMO) and time and space controls. The situation-specific mental responses were rated high, average and low in 48%, 37% and 15% of the sample, respectively. The late-trended RMO were rated average, low and poor in 6%, 29% and 65% of the sample, respectively; and the early-trended RMO were rated average, low and poor in 23%, 29% and 48% of the sample, respectively. Furthermore, the distance judging ability was rated good, excellent and average in 77%, 17% and 6% of the sample, respectively. We believe that the study data and analyses may be beneficial for the badminton game tactics design purposes in particular and for the training process on the whole, with a special emphasis on competitive periods.