High-level Enactive and Embodied Cognition in Expert Sport Performance

Sport, Ethics and Philosophy 11 (3):370-384 (2017)
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Abstract

Mental representation has long been central to standard accounts of action and cognition generally, and in the context of sport. We argue for an enactive and embodied account that rejects the idea that representation is necessary for cognition, and posit instead that cognition arises, or is enacted, in certain types of interactions between organisms and their environment. More specifically, we argue that enactive theories explain some kinds of high-level cognition, those that underlie some of the best performances in sport and similar practices (dance, martial arts), better than representational accounts. Flow and mushin (mindfully fluid awareness) are explained enactively to this end. This results in a mutually beneficial analysis where enactivism offers theoretical and practical advantages as an explanation of high performance in sports, while the latter validates enactivism.

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References found in this work

Embodied Cognition.Lawrence A. Shapiro - 2010 - New York: Routledge.
A Dynamic Systems Approach to the Development of Cognition and Action.David Morris, E. Thelen & L. B. Smith - 1997 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 11 (2).
What Computers Can't Do.H. Dreyfus - 1976 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 27 (2):177-185.

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