Contextual interference effects in learning novel motor skills

E. Pollatou, E. Kioumourtzoglou, N. Agelousis, G. Mavromatis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


The present study investigated the generalizability of contextual interference effects by extending previous laboratory and field research to novel movements controlled by different motor programs. 30 men and 33 women learned novel throwing and kicking tasks, practicing with blocked, serial, or random schedules. The subjects practiced the tasks four days a week for two weeks and then were given a postest. One week later subjects were given a retention test. Significant improvements in performance were found for all groups for both tasks; however, a significant effect for practice condition was found only for the throwing task during retention, for which the random practice schedule led to better learning than the blocked and the serial practice. These findings suggest that the blocked, serial, and random practice methods could be effectively used for tasks controlled by different motor programs but must be practiced in the same teaching session, without expecting one to be more effective in learning than any other.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)487-496
Number of pages10
JournalPerceptual and Motor Skills
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1997


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