Exploring the effects of mental fatigue on perceptual motor task performance and kinematics
Fitzgerald, Sarah A.
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Mentally demanding tasks that require performance accuracy are common in several occupations. However, little is known about how mental fatigue can impact accuracy performance. Therefore, the purpose of this thesis was to examine the impacts of mental fatigue on performance accuracy and arm kinematics during dart throwing. Dart throw accuracy and kinematic performance were observed as two groups of participants performed two sets of dart throws, one group undergoing a mentally demanding task and one as a control. No significant changes in accuracy performance or kinematic variables were associated with mental fatigue apart from a significant decrease in shoulder angle of elevation at the end of dart throwing motions. However, notable variability was observed among all outcome measures, likely due to the complex unconstrained nature of this task. Further constraining this task may allow for further study of this phenomenon.