Decision-making in sports: A cognitive and neural basis perspective

Gershon Tenenbaum, Edson Filho

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Decision-making (DM) in sport is a process of information processing in natural environments that impose unique constraints upon the decision makers. Athletes rely on their mental representations to locate cues in the environment, which are used for anticipatory DM. Furthermore, with increased experience, athletes shift from serial to parallel processing, and from target to context visual strategies. These processes enable an athlete to identify patterns of essential stimuli, elaborate on them efficiently via stored motor programs, and retrieve a response while keeping others on alert for possible decision alteration when needed. This process is more efficient when the athlete perceives the pressure of the sport environment as facilitative rather than debilitative to performance. That is, being in the optimal emotional performance zone and feeling a high sense of efficacy for anticipating decisions and selecting responses increases the probability of making the correct decision. DM in teams is influenced by myriad group processes, such as cohesion, team mental models, and collective efficacy beliefs.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Curated Reference Collection in Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Psychology
PublisherElsevier Science Ltd.
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9780128093245
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Anticipation
  • Decision-making
  • Decision-making in teams
  • Visual-spatial attention


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