AESTHETIC RATIOS OF FLIGHT - HOW OBSERVER EXPERTISE AND AESTHETIC PERCEPTION ARE RELATED TO WEBSTER FREERUNNING SKILL FLIGHT KINEMATICS
Keywords:empirical aesthetics, motion perception, Likert-scale, golden ratio, videography
The perception of (motion) aesthetics is related to the circumstances of the object, the observer, and the given context. The central question of this study is whether the perception of motion aesthetics is related to a motor skill’s ratio of flight kinematics and the observer’s sensory-motor experiences. Motor skills, perceived as more aesthetic, are hypothesized to show kinematic flight ratios near the golden ratio. Motor skills, perceived as less aesthetic, are hypothesized to show kinematic flight ratios farther away from the golden ratio. Furthermore, this relationship is hypothesized to be related to the observer’s sensory-motor experience. Therefore, 36 participants (12 freerunning experts, 12 freerunning novices, and 12 laypeople) were asked to indicate their perception of motion aesthetics when watching video sequences of different freerunning performances. The results indicate that kinematic flight ratios and the observer’s sensory-motor experience are related to the aesthetic perception of the freerunning skill. As hypothesized, kinematic ratios of Webster performances perceived as more aesthetic are closer to the golden ratio, and Webster performances perceived as less aesthetic are farther away from the golden ratio; this is significant for expert and novice freerunners, but not for laypeople. Thus, we conclude that the aesthetic perception of complex motor skills is related to kinematic flight ratios and the observer’s sensory-motor expertise. Future work should incorporate such knowledge about kinematic ratios and how to address them during motor skill performances to create and perform aesthetically pleasing complex motor skills.
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