72nd Day Of Lockdown

Maharashtra74860323292587 Tamil Nadu2587214316208 Delhi236459542615 Gujarat18117122121122 Rajasthan96526744209 Uttar Pradesh88705257230 Madhya Pradesh82835003358 West Bengal61682410364 Karnataka4063151453 Andhra Pradesh3971246468 Bihar3945174123 Telangana3020155699 Jammu and Kashmir260194631 Odisha238814169 Haryana2356105521 Punjab2301200044 Kerala149565112 Assam14862854 Uttarakhand9592225 Jharkhand6612965 Chhatisgarh5481211 Tripura4231730 Himachal Pradesh3401186 Chandigarh2972144 Puducherry88300 Manipur83110 Goa73500 Nagaland5800 Arunachal Pradesh3710 Meghalaya33131 Mizoram1410 Sikkim200
Lifestyle Viral and Trending 08 Dec 2019 Yips, causing athlet ...

Yips, causing athletes to fail

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | SWATI SHARMA
Published Dec 9, 2019, 12:00 am IST
Updated Dec 9, 2019, 12:00 am IST
Stephen Hendry is deemed as one of the most successful snooker, had developed a condition known as the yips.
Yips are often conflated with choking, but research suggests neurological causes
 Yips are often conflated with choking, but research suggests neurological causes

Stephen Hendry, deemed one of the most successful snooker players of all time, began developing a condition called the ‘yips’ as his career progressed. The condition began causing the loss of his fine motor skills.

Explaining the symptom of the disease, Dr I. Bharat Kumar Reddy, senior consultant, Psychiatry, at Apollo Hospitals, says, “Yips cause a sudden loss of skills. There’s no clear explanation why it happens, and it’s mostly seen in experienced players. The malady doesn’t have a treatment and some sportspersons have had to either give up their sports or change their action.”

 

The term ‘yips’ was coined around the middle of the last century by the Scottish golfer Tommy Armour, a sufferer. He defined it as “a brain spasm that impairs the short game.” Some medical websites define yips as “involuntary wrist spasms that occur most commonly when golfers are trying to putt.”

Then again, golfers aren’t the only athletes that yips afflicts — cricket bowlers suffer a similar disability, which is also called the yips. In darts, the problem is called “dartitis”, in snooker, it’s “cueitis”, in archery, “target panic”, in gun shooting, “flinching” and in baseball it’s called “pitching”.

Who else can yips affect?
Incidentally, the condition can also affect those outside sports. Dr Nitin Kumar B., senior arthroscopy surgeon and sports medicine specialist at Yashoda Hospitals, talks about how it can affect professionals such as dentists, craftsmen, musicians and surgeons. “The affected individuals suffer from involuntary muscle contractions while performing specific repetitive tasks, developing tremors, spasm, cramps, or sudden freezing without any warning,” elaborates Dr Kumar.

Dr Reddy from Apollo Hospitals adds that yips are unexplained loss of skills always associated with performance anxiety. He adds that there is some mention of yips-like phenomenon way back in fifteenth-century literatures although it’s more often described since 1963. “Now, people have begun attributing the ailment to a neurological condition such as focal dystonia, in which small muscles go into spasms. And till date, it’s one of the conditions sports medicine has no clear answers for,” explains Dr Reddy.

Functional changes accompanying yips
Dr Deepika Sirineni, senior consultant and neuro physician at Apollo Hospitals, believed ‘yips’ are an acquired deterioration in the function of motor pathways, which aggravate when thresholds of high stress and physiologic arousal are exceeded. “Golfers afflicted with yips have more forearm electromyogram activity and higher competitive anxiety than unaffected golfers in both high and low anxiety conditions,” she explains. Electromyogram, by the way, is the record of the electrical activity produced by skeletal muscles.

Dr Sirineni goes on to add that yips appear particularly relevant for women, resulting in significantly greater increases in cortisol and systolic blood pressure (SBP) for women than in men.

Talking about the remedies
A question that remains is if yips and other sports-related movement problems are solely anxiety-related, why do they affect only certain motions? Can a change of target, technique or equipment help them go away?

One possibility is the biochemical changes in the brain accompanying ageing. Excessive use of the involved muscles and intense demands of coordination and concentration may increase the problem.

“Sometimes, simple measures like changing the grip, mild changes in action, altering the equipment can also help,” says Dr Kumar. He then goes on to add that scientists have developed a wrist band that shows increased stress levels and how it affects the fine motor skills during stressful times.

...




ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT