First International Conference in Sport Psychology and Embodied Cognition
UAE University–Abu Dhabi Sports Council
24th-­‐27th February 2014,
Emirate of Abu Dhabi, UAE

This academic conference aims at exploring important points of connection between the empirical studies of sport psychology and the embodied approach to the cognitive sciences. It will offer a unique occasion of interdisciplinary collaboration, and foster opportunities of reciprocal learning between theoretical and applied sport scientists, exercise and performance psychologists, cognitive neuroscientists, psycholinguists, philosophers of mind, phenomenologists, and practitioners who work in the sport environment, including coaches, trainers, and athletes of various disciplines.

Embodied cognition theory offers the most suitable paradigm to pursue this integration and cross-disciplinary collaboration: successful sport psychologists recognize that the results and the models of embodied cognitive science can allow them develop more effective training methods; reciprocally, attentive cognitive scientists can’t overlook sport and exercise psychology, as this field is one of the richest terrains for empirical exploration, experimental discovery, and epistemological validation of models and theories. Cooperation between these two fields promises immediate and tangible benefits, as it allows proving the correctness of the theoretical models by testing how effectively they can improve the athletes’ performances; at the same time, it raises the value of sport science for cognitive science, proving how the empirical study of athletic performance can inspire and validate new explanatory models of sensorimotor capabilities, control, attention, memory, and language-action interfaces. Sports can provide invaluable insights for the sciences of mind, telling how skills are actually enacted and controlled, through the body, defining dynamic boundaries between mind and world.

I will be there with a keynote entitled “Improving concentration in football teams.”

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