Reaction times

Discussion in 'Trading' started by joethemoustache, Jan 29, 2004.

  1. Morning. The other day a thread discussed the importance of ping times on your trading, and spilled over to human reaction times. Got me thinking on what was "good" and "normal" reaction times. Below are reaction times for some pro athletes all in between 100 and 200 ms. On the side:Research has showed that sleep deprivation is just as devastating to reaction times as alcohol!

    I think though, that what really should be measured is time taken in decision making. The only trading style dependant on reactiontimes in "pressing the button" should be scalping based on "feel" or non-quantifiable rules. As soon as it is quantifiable it can be automated, but in all other instances i think it is the time it takes processing the info in your brain wheather or not and how to act, that is the decisive factor.

    Found another place to test reaction times for those interested:

    My best average on the test above was 0,204 s, but then again I tried quite a few times and then again it is not so important. But do by all means post your best score, its fun to compare!

    Take care



    Best Reaction Times
    The best athletes reaction times are usually in the range of 120 mSec (0.12 sec) to 160 mSec (see graphs below). Tim Montgomery improved that to a near perfect 104 mSec - and came very very close to being false-started. The only sprinter to get closer to perfection was Surin Bruny - who managed a 101 mSec in a the 1999 WC 2nd semi-final .

    Burrell's 1991 world record began with a reaction time of just 117 mSec. In the same race, Carl Lewis reacted in a snail's-pace 166 mSec, probably because he'd deliberately slowed his start due to having an earlier false-start posted against him (this put him at risk of disqualification if he false-started again). Taking away reaction time, Burrell covered the 100 metres in 9.783 seconds, Lewis in 9.764. Lewis was actually the faster runner, but Burrell was the better "gunner".

    In Rome (1987) Carl Lewis' reaction time was 193 mSec for a 9.93 sec run.


    (The rules of the IAAF (International Amateur Athletic Federation) fix the minimum time of physiological reaction at 100 milliseconds. Below this limit any movement of reaction is considered to be premature and places the runner in a false start situation.)
  2. I believe that were a study to be done, it would show that being good at video games helps enormously in short-term trading like scalping - all other things being equal.
    Eye-hand coordination, concentration of the mind and decision making under parallels to scalping.
  3. Reacting is not a forte for traders after a certain skill level is reached. The focus is more on making money, I believe.

    The market migrates from operating point to operating point and is very large besides everything else.

    Skill in trading can be considered to be based upon a systemic orientation. When that is the case, several aspects of trading combine for making money.

    Reaction is not one of them.
  4. manz66


    I used to believe that you need to have a very fast reflex or drive like a racing car driver at 185mph, but I found market gives enough hints before hand for timely scalp trading.

    Only thing you have to understand is price action in 30 seconds, 1 minute and tick chart. Also, be selective about picking the right trade using your brain.

  5. traderob


    I think scalping is not as short-time as playing a video game.
  6. How about tennis or racquetball?