No Red Lights: Hockey: Scientific Proof! Seeing is Believing - Goalie News And Instruction By Roxanne Gaudiel

Scientific Proof! Seeing is Believing

I was reading through some goalie material today and found an interesting article. Mostly I find it fascinating as I always knew this to be true, but now I have the scientific/empirical evidence to back it up :) This is an excerpt from a book, the copyright information is below. You can also find this book at: Why a Curve ball Curves.

"A fast glove and a quick stick may matter less to hockey goalie than where they focus their eyes in the moments before an opposing player takes a shot on goal.

While it may sound obvious, having your eyes focused on the puck and the shooter's stick in the second before the shot means the goalie is more likely to make the save, according to researchers at the University of Calgary.
Researchers Derek Panchuk and Professor Joan Vickers call this the Quiet Eye phenomenon, nothing that novice goaltenders tend to let their gaze wander while elite goaltenders remain focused on the puck and the shooter's stick. Vickers describes the Quiet Eye phenomenon as the critical moment when the eyes must receive and the brain must process the last piece of visual information before performing a critical movement. Using wireless headgear, the researchers were able to track a goalie's eye, body, and object movement to within 16.76 milliseconds. How far away the shot was didn't seem to matter in terms of a goalie's ability to make the save, as long as the puck was in view a second before the shot.
The study measured the eye movement of college-level goalies facing accomplished shooters one-on-one in a non-game situation. The goalies stopped the puck about 75 percent of the time under these conditions. In games, elite hockey goalies average about 90 percent save rate, although the quality of the shots taken varies considerably." (Vizard , 155).

Vizard, Frank Ed. "Why a Curve ball Curves." London: Hearst Books, 2008.