Ingalls J S: Cognition and athletic behavior: an investigation of the NLP principle of congruence.
Dissertation Abstracts International 48(7), 2090-B Columbia University Teachers College (Order = DA8721125): 158, 1987.
Abstract: Theoretically, the development of effective performance enhancement techniques for athletes may be facilitated by evidence supporting the validity of a quick and accurate means of determining which sensory systems athletes use to regulate their performance. NLP provides a model for making this assessment that is based on the assumption that eye movements and predicates are related. Prior studies testing this assumption failed to provide supportive evidence. Possibly, in these studies, synesthesia patterns in subjects' responses confounded the determination of subjects' eye movements and predicates. In the present study which also tests the NLP assumption, synestheses were identified and used to determine subjects' eye movement/predicate patterns. Interviews with nine subjects were videorecorded. The data from eight of those subjects were analyzed. The representational systems of the predicates they uttered were systematically assigned to eye movements. In this process various methods were used by the investigator and a trained rater to eliminate bias and obtain interrater reliability. The analysis of the data included comparison of eye movements/predicate patterns derived from deliberate self-reports. The eye movement/predicate patterns formed by at least fifty percent of the spontaneous responses of four of the eight subjects indicated a relationship between eye movements and predicates. Three subjects made predominantly upward eye movements and one subject displayed no discernible pattern. The results are considered from several points of view. Considered from the point of view of an empirical test, they are supportive of the NLP assumption; however, considered from a theoretical point of view, a model which provides an explanation of any result, as does the NLP model with the concept of synesthesia, obviates the data that does not support the model. Future tests of the NLP assumption which considers the effects of synesthesia may use a hermeneutic paradigm. The validity and reliability of self-reports of subjects is examined. Also, the usefulness of comparing the results of spontaneous responses with those from deliberate self-reports is discussed.