The Influence of the "Red Win" Effect in Sports: A Hypothesis of Erroneous Perception of Opponents Dressed in Red - Preliminary Test
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Purpose. Psychological research indicates that, in contact sports, the results of sports competitions might be influenced by the color of an athlete's uniform (especially the color red). However, previous research has not yet experimentally verified whether this hypothesis might be a consequence of perceptual distortion caused by moving objects of a certain color, such as red. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine the effect of an object's color on the efficiency of performing simple tasks in a basic computer game. Methods. 225 participants aged between 16 and 30 years played nine different "arcade" games of skill, differed by the rules and colors used in the game, where the subjects were tested on their ability to hit, escape from, or outmaneuver certain objects of a certain color (either blue, red or black). The score achieved was then correlated to what effect the color of the objects had on a subject's visual perception. Results. It was found that the study participants were able to hit red moving objects significantly better than blue and black objects. No difference was found in the ability to avoid elements, in all three colors. Conclusions. The obtained result finds that in some games of skill, the color of the used stimulus might significantly influence perceptual efficiency and, therefore, the results and performance of individuals. The results of our study suggest that future research is needed in investigating the meaning and role of colors, as this may be very important, in various sports. The colors used in sports equipment, uniforms, environment, etc., should be empirically verified if they can influence the results of sports competitions.
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