Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine


Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968
       SCImago 2016     SJR: 0.981   Cites per Doc. 2-Year: 2.04    3-Year: 2.17
JCReports 2016
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©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2017) 16, 565 - 573
Research article
Do Red and Blue Uniforms Matter in Football and Handball Penalties?
Bjoern Krenn1,, Niklas Pernhaupt2, Markus Handsteiner1

1 University of Vienna, Centre for Sport Science and University Sports, Vienna, Austria
2 University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria

Bjoern Krenn
✉ University of Vienna, Centre for Sport Science and University Sports, Department of Sports Sciences, Auf der Schmelz 6a, 1150 Vienna - Austria

24-05-2017 -- Accepted: 29-08-2017 --
Published (online): 1-12-2017


Past research has revealed ambiguous results on the impact of red uniforms in sports competition. The current study was aimed at analyzing the role of red and blue uniforms in football and handball penalties. Two experiments were conducted using a within subjects design, where participants rated uniform color-manipulated video clips. In the first study, participants (n = 39) watched footage of football players kicking a penalty, whereas in the second study (n = 118) videos of handball penalty takers, handball goalkeepers and football goalkeepers preparing themselves to score/save a penalty were shown. Participants rated player’s/goalkeeper’s level of confidence and the expected position of the ball crossing the goal line in the first experiment and additionally the probability of scoring the penalty against the goalkeepers in the second experiment. The videos stopped at the point where the ball was leaving the foot and hand respectively. Results did not show any beneficial impact of red uniforms. Rather, football players wearing blue were rated to kick the ball higher. The study contradicts any positive effect of red versus blue uniforms in the context of football and handball penalties, which emphasizes the need of searching for potential moderators of color’s impact on human behavior.

Key words: Color, hue, performance, decision, cognition
Key Points
In two video-based experiments no potential advantage of wearing red versus blue in football and handball penalties for either goalkeepers or penalty takers was found.
The roles of contextual variables differing in various sports are discussed as potential moderator of color’s impact on human behavior.



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