Fundamentals of sport and movement psychology (Weinberg) (2023)

Summary of the fundamentals of sport and exercise psychology by Weinberg, donated to WorldSupporter

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Chapter 1 - Introduction to Sport and Exercise Psychology

The scientific study of people and their behavior in the context of movement and sport is known as sport and movement psychology. Psychologists working in this field identify principles that professionals can apply to help others benefit from and participate in sports and physical activities. When a person studies sport and exercise psychology, they generally have two goals: (1) to understand how psychological factors affect a person's physical performance and (2) to understand how participation in sport and exercise affects mental health, the development and capacity of a person. . wellness. There are several questions that psychologists ask during the study. As you delve into the first objective, you might wonder how fear affects a player's accuracy or how reinforcement from a coach affects team cohesion. When studying the second endpoint, they might ask whether running reduces anxiety and depression and whether daily participation in physical education improves self-esteem. Sport psychology has a broad population base. Professionals can use it to help top athletes perform at their best, but most sports psychologists deal with people with physical or mental disabilities, the elderly, and ordinary athletes. In recent years, more exercise psychologists have focused on the psychological factors associated with exercise and health, promoting exercise and evaluating the efficacy of exercise as a treatment for depression. Due to broadening of interests, the field is known as sport and movement psychology.

Specialization in Sports Psychology

Sports psychologists practice a variety of professions. In its activities it has three main functions: research, teaching and consulting. Of course, one of the jobs of scientists is to increase knowledge in this field through research. Therefore, most sport and exercise psychologists at a university do research. Today, sport and exercise psychologists are part of multidisciplinary research teams investigating problems. They share their views with colleagues and participants in the field. This leads to healthy sharing, discussion, and debate in meetings and journals. Sports and exercise psychology specialists also teach university subjects such as exercise and health psychology and applied sports psychology. They may also teach courses like personality psychology or developmental psychology if they are in a psychology major. The third role of sport and exercise psychologists is to counsel individual athletes or teams. This allows them to develop psychological skills to improve performance in training and competition. There are universities and Olympic committees that employ full-time sports psychology consultants. Many teams also use part-time consultants for psychological skills training. There are also some sports psychologists who work with military personnel and surgeons to help them hone their skills. Some also work in the fitness industry.

There are two disciplines in sport psychology: clinical sport psychology and educational sport psychology. Clinical sport psychologists have extensive training in psychology and are therefore capable of identifying and treating people with emotional disturbances. These psychologists are licensed by state agencies to treat people with emotional disturbances and have received additional training in sport and exercise psychology and exercise science. These psychologists are needed because some athletes develop serious emotional disturbances and require special treatment. Substance abuse and eating disorders are areas where a clinical sports psychologist can help exercise participants.

Educational sports psychologists have extensive training in sports and movement sciences, kinesiology, and physical education. You understand the psychology of human movement, especially in the context of sport and exercise. He has completed additional training in psychology and counselling. They are not licensed psychologists and are not trained to treat people with emotional disturbances. An educational sports psychologist can be seen as a mental coach who educates athletes and trainees about psychological abilities and how to develop them. This is done through group and individual sessions. Some areas are developing self-confidence and managing anxiety. When a sports psychology educational consultant encounters an athlete with an emotional disturbance, he or she refers the athlete to a licensed clinical psychologist or clinical sports psychologist for treatment. Clinical and educational sports and exercise psychologists must have a broad knowledge of sports psychology and sports science. In 1991, a certified consulting program was introduced. Individuals who have training in sports psychology and sports science may qualify for certification as sports and exercise consultants.

The history of sport and the psychology of movement.

Today, sport and exercise psychology is more popular than ever. However, this does not mean that the field is newly developed. Modern sports psychology dates back to the 1880s, and references to psychology date back to the ancient Olympic Games. The history of sports psychology clashes with the history of other fields such as psychology, kinesiology, and physical education. The field has also been influenced by important socio-cultural developments, such as the growth of the Olympic movement, women's liberation efforts, and the popularity of professional sports. The history of sport psychology is divided into six periods.

Period 1: early years (1893-1920)

In North America, sports psychology began in the 1890s. Norman Triplett was a psychologist who wondered why cyclists went faster when riding in a group than when riding alone. He first verified that the observation was correct by studying cycling records. So he ran experiments. Another pioneer was writing. He conducted a series of laboratory studies on runners' reaction times and muscle movement and the transmission of physical training. He also examined how the sport could develop the character of the participants. The Scriptures worked with William Anderson, one of the first physical education teachers in America. This shows that people from the fields of physical education and psychology have collaborated to develop sport psychology. The triplet and the Scriptures were part of the new psychological movement that focused on the use of experimental laboratory methods and measurements to acquire knowledge. Other scholars have taken an interest in the field from a more philosophical perspective. One of them was Pierre de Coubertin, the founder of the modern Olympic Games. He has written extensively on the psychological aspects of sport and has organized two Olympic congresses focusing on psychology. In the early years, sports educators and psychologists were just beginning to investigate the psychological aspects of sport and motor learning. They measured athletes' reaction times, examined the role of sport in the development of personality and character, and studied how people acquire athletic skills. However, they did little to apply these studies. No one is an expert on the subject.

Period 2: The Development of Psychological Tests and Laboratories (1921-1938)

This period was marked by the development of sports psychology laboratories in Japan, Germany, Russia, and the United States. It is also characterized by an increase in psychological tests. Coleman Griffith was the first American to devote much of his career to sports psychology, and is now considered the father of American sports psychology. He developed the first sports psychology laboratory, helped found one of the first sports psychology schools in the United States, and wrote two books on the subject. He also developed psychological profiles of famous athletes. Around this time, the psychologists also began testing the athletes (reaction times, aggressiveness, and concentration).

Period 3: Preparation for the future (1939-1965)

Franklin Henry was largely responsible for the scientific development of the field. He dealt with the psychological aspects of the sport and the acquisition of motor skills. He trained many sports educators and initiated systematic research programs. Johnson and Slatter-Hammel helped lay the groundwork for future study of sport psychology and helped create the academic discipline of sport and exercise science. Applied work in sport psychology was limited during this period, but towards the end of this period this began to change. One person doing applied work at the time was Yates. She was one of the first women in the United States to practice and research sports psychology. During WO II, she developed the relaxation set method and tested whether her interventions were effective.

Phase 4: Development of academic sport psychology (1966-1977)

In the mid-1960s, physical education became an academic discipline. It is now called kinesiology or exercise science. Sport psychology has become a separate component of this discipline, distinct from motor learning. Motor learning experts have focused on how humans acquire motor skills and the conditions for feedback, practice, and timing. Sport psychologists have studied how psychological factors such as anxiety and self-esteem affect sports and motor performance, and how participation in sport affects psychological development. Applied sports psychology consultants began working with athletes and teams. Ogilvie was one of the first to do so, and is often considered the father of applied sports psychology in the United States. The first sports psychology societies were founded in North America.

Periodo 5: Ciencia y Práctica Multidisciplinar (1978-2000)

During this period, there was tremendous growth in sports and exercise psychology in the United States and internationally. There was more respect and acceptance from the public. There has also been increased interest in applied issues and in sport and exercise psychology separate from movement-related specializations and the sport sciences of motor learning, control and motor development. Other investigations were carried out. Research in this area has been better accepted. Several books and magazines were developed. Dorothy Harris furthered women's and sports psychology by helping to establish a graduate program in sports psychology. She was the first American and the first female member of the International Society for Sport Psychology.

Period 6: Contemporary Sport and Exercise Psychology (since 2001)

Sport and movement psychology is a promising field today. In this overview, you will learn in detail about contemporary sports and the psychology of exercise.

science and practice

Sport and exercise psychology is a science. Therefore, we must understand the scientific method. Science is dynamic, and in order to test specific theories, scientists have developed some general guidelines for research. First, there must be a systematic approach to investigating a problem. It is about standardizing the conditions. Scientific methods involve control conditions. The method is also empirical, which means that it is based on observations. Objective evidence must support beliefs, and the evidence must be open to external observation and evaluation. The scientific method is also fundamental, and that means it involves rigorous evaluation by scientists.

The ultimate goal of a scientist is a theory. Theories allow a scientist to organize and explain a large number of facts in a pattern that helps others to understand them. Theory becomes practice. Social facilitation theory studies how audiences influence performance. Sometimes people perform better in front of an audience, and sometimes they perform worse. Zajonc saw a pattern in these results and formulated the theory of social facilitation. In his opinion, people who do simple tasks or jobs they know well perform better in an audience. When people perform unfamiliar or complex tasks, the audience detracts from the performance. The theory is that an audience creates arousal in the performer, which impairs performance on difficult tasks that are not well learned and promotes performance on well-learned skills.

One important way that scientists construct or disprove theories is by conducting studies and experiments. In studies, researchers look at factors without changing the environment in any way. An example of this is a written questionnaire. Studies have limited ability to identify what scientists call causal relationships between factors. In experiments, the researcher manipulates and observes variables and studies how changes in one variable affect changes in other variables. The participants are divided into two different groups: the experimental group and the control group. The experimental group receives some type of training and the control group receives no training.

Each method has strengths and limitations. The strength of the scientific method lies in its reliability. The methodology is systematic and controlled and the results are consistent and repeatable. Scientists are also trained to be objective. They want to collect unbiased data. The scientific method also has limitations. One is that it is slow and conservative. It may take longer than practitioners. Therefore, not always practical. Sometimes scientific knowledge is reductionist. Since it is sometimes very complex to study all the variables of a situation at the same time, a researcher can select isolated variables that are of greatest interest. But when a problem is broken down into smaller parts, our understanding of the big picture can be compromised. Science also overestimates internal validity. This means that science prefers the extent to which the results of a test can be traced back to the treatment used. Too much emphasis on internal validity can lead scientists to overlook external validity. This is the actual benefit in the real world.

Professional knowledge is knowledge based on experience. It can come from many sources and avenues of knowledge, such as systematic observation, shared public experience, the scientific method, case studies, intuition, and introspection. Professional practical knowledge is learning guided by trial and error. It also has its strengths and limitations. Practical knowledge is more holistic than scientifically derived knowledge. Knowledge of professional practice also tends to absorb new practices. Also, practitioners can apply practical theories immediately because they do not have to wait for theories to be scientifically verified. However, professional practice can provide less precise explanations than science. It is also more biased than science and less objective. It is also less reliable. A practitioner must combine scientific knowledge of sport and movement psychology with professional practical knowledge.

different orientations

Sport psychologists differ on how they view successful interventions. You can choose from several orientations for the field. One of those orientations is the psychophysiological orientation. Scientists with this bias believe that the best way to study behavior during exercise is to study physiological processes in the brain and how they influence physical activity. These scientists typically measure heart rate, brain activity, and muscle actions. Psychologists with a social psychological orientation assume that behavior is determined by a complex interaction between the environment and the athlete's personality. Psychologists with this approach generally study how a person's social environment affects them as a person and how behavior affects the sociopsychological environment. Psychologists who take a cognitive-behavioral orientation believe that thinking plays a central role in determining behavior. These psychologists could develop self-report measures to assess self-confidence, goal orientations, and anxiety.

future trends

There are some current and future trends in sport and exercise psychology:

  • There is more advice and services available than ever before, and more sports psychologists are helping athletes and coaches achieve their goals.

  • There is more emphasis on counseling and clinical training than sports psychologists. There is a need for additional training in counseling and clinical psychology.

  • There is more emphasis on ethical and competition issues.

  • New subspecialties and specializations are emerging.

  • Tensions persist between academic and applied sports psychology professionals.

  • Qualitative research methods (not numerical) are accepted.

  • Applied sports psychologists have more job opportunities than ever before, but limited opportunities for full-time positions.

  • It has become a recognized sports science and is attracting more and more attention around the world.

  • Leading figures in the general field of psychology were dedicated to a positive psychology movement. This means that psychologists need to focus on developing positive traits. Sport and exercise psychologists have long practiced positive performance and this has opened up new possibilities.

  • It is important to accept the globalization of sport and the psychology of exercise.

  • Multidisciplinary work is increasing.

  • Sports psychologists learn to use new technology to facilitate their efforts.

  • There is more emphasis on examining cultural diversity and examining how groups (gender, generation) are similar and unique.

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Chapter 2 - Sport and personality

Most people who need to describe their personality use adjectives (funny, happy). Some might list how they reacted in different situations. Theorists have tried to define personality and have agreed on one thing: uniqueness. Simply put, personality refers to the traits or mix of traits that make a person unique. One can understand personality through its structure. Personality can be divided into three separate but interconnected levels: the psychological core, typical responses, and role-related behavior. The psychological core is the most fundamental level of your personality. Some components of this are attitudes, interests, values, motives, and beliefs about yourself and your self-esteem. The psychological core is who you really are, not who you want others to think you are. Typical reactions are how we normally react to the world around us. Typical reactions are often good indicators of someone's psychological core. Therefore, if a person constantly responds to social situations by keeping quiet, it is likely that they are an introvert. But if someone were to see this person calmly at a party and conclude that he is an introvert, he would be wrong. It may have been the specific situation of the party that silenced this person. The calm was perhaps not a typical reaction. Role-related behavior is how you act based on how you perceive your social situation. This is the most changeable aspect of the personality. Behavior changes as the perception of the environment changes. Different situations call for different roles.

These different levels of personality span a continuum from internally directed behaviors to externally directed behaviors. So everyone sees the role-based behavior, those who need to be more involved with you see the typical reactions, and only those who are interested or motivated enough can see the psychological core. The psychological core is the most stable and intimate of the three levels and the most difficult to know. Role-related behaviors are more influenced by the external social environment. One's reactions fall somewhere in the middle because they are the result of the interaction of core psychological and role related behaviors. People want stability and personality change. The core is necessary to function effectively in society and the dynamic aspects allow learning. Coaches, trainers, and health professionals can be more effective when they understand the different levels of personality structure that go beyond situation-specific role-based behavior. Getting to know someone can give insight into the person's motivations, behavior, and actions. You have to understand someone to be able to help them.

Five points of view on the study of personality.

There are several points of view from which psychologists have analyzed personality. Five different ways of studying personality in sport and exercise are discussed in this part.

psychodynamic approach

The psychodynamic approach was popularized mainly by Sigmund Freud. It is characterized by two themes. The first is that it emphasizes the unconscious determinants of behavior, such as what Freud called the id (instinctive drives), and how these relate to conscious aspects of the personality, such as the superego (moral conscience) or the ego (personality consciousness). . . ) get into trouble. The second theme is that it focuses on understanding the whole person rather than identifying isolated characteristics. It is a complex approach. He views personality as a dynamic set of processes that are constantly changing and often in conflict with each other. The psychodynamic approach has had a great impact in the field of psychology, but has had little impact in sport psychology. There was a call to pay more attention to the psychodynamic approach. Some researchers have used methods of structural analysis of social behavior to measure psychodynamic constructs through case study research. This was important to this view because one of the weaknesses of the psychodynamic approach was the difficulty of testing it. Another weakness of this approach is that it focuses almost exclusively on the internal determinants of behavior and pays little attention to the social environment. For this reason, few sports scientists apply this approach, and people trained in sport psychology are unlikely to qualify to use the psychodynamic approach. The contribution of this approach is that it recognizes that not all of an athlete's behavior is consciously controlled and that it may be important to focus on the unconscious determinants of behavior.

fast focus

The trait approach assumes that the basic units of personality are relatively stable. Psychologists who follow this approach believe that the causes of behavior are generally internal and that the role of environmental factors is minimal. The assumption that a competitive athlete is likely to be competitive in any sporting situation. The Big Five personality model is the most common. This model establishes that there are five main dimensions of personality: neuroticism (anxiety, depression and anger) versus emotional stability, extraversion (assertiveness, sociability) versus introversion, openness to experience (curiosity, need for variety), agreeableness (humility, altruism ). ), and Conscientiousness (self-discipline and compulsion). People with different levels of these traits will behave differently. Studies have shown that extraversion and conscientiousness are positively correlated with physical activity, and neuroticism is negatively correlated with physical activity. Many researchers in movement psychology study the influence of Big Five personality traits and other traits on behaviors and mental states. Trait theorists claim that the best way to understand personality is to look at traits that are relatively permanent and stable over time. However, knowing a person's personality traits does not help researchers predict how that person will behave in a given situation. Traits have some utility in predicting behavior in a variety of situations.

situation approach

This approach holds that behavior is largely determined by the situation or environment. This approach is based on social learning theory, which explains behavior through observational learning (modeling) and social reinforcement (feedback). According to this view, environmental influences and reinforcers shape a person's behavior. Regardless of your personality traits, you can be assertive in one situation but reserved in another. This view holds that when the environmental influence is strong enough, the effect of personality traits is minimal. Sport psychologists advocate the situational approach less strongly than the trait approach. The situational approach cannot really predict behavior. A situation may affect the behavior of some people, but other people are not affected by the same situation.

interactive approach

This approach considers the situation and the person as determinants of behavior. According to this view, these two variables together determine behavior. Knowing the psychological characteristics of a person and the specific situation is useful for understanding behavior. According to this view, personal characteristics and situational factors independently determine behavior, but sometimes they interact with each other in unique ways to influence behavior. Someone with a high hostility trait will not necessarily be violent in all situations, but when placed in the right potentially violent situation, the violent nature can be triggered. Most contemporary sport and exercise psychologists prefer the interaction-oriented approach to studying behavior. The research found that the interaction between people and situations could explain twice as many behaviors as traits or situations alone.

phenomenological approach

The phenomenological approach is the most popular orientation today. This approach states that behavior is best determined by considering situations and personal characteristics. This approach does not focus on fixed traits or dispositions as primary determinants of behavior, but the psychologist examines the person's understanding and interpretation of himself and his environment. Therefore, the person's subjective experiences and their personal views of the world and of themselves are considered critical. Many of the most current theories in sports psychology fall within this framework.

These five approaches differ in important ways. They differ on a continuum of determining behavior, they also differ in terms of assumptions about the origins of human behavior (either fixed traits or by conscious determinants). Interactional and phenomenological considerations form the basis of this book.

measure personality

Psychologists have developed methods to measure personality. Many psychologists make a distinction between a person's typical behavioral style (traits) and how the situation affects the behavior (states). This distinction was crucial for the development of personality research in sport. A trait can cause someone to behave in a certain way, but the behavior does not have to occur in all situations. Therefore, both traits and states must be taken into account when trying to understand and predict behavior. There are different measures:

  • Measures of Traits and Conditions: An example of this is the Trait Sports Confidence Inventory, which asks how you feel generally or typically, and the State Sports Confidence Inventory asks you to indicate how you feel at a particular time.

  • Situation-specific metrics: These metrics are more reliable in predicting behavior in specific situations. Because they take into account both the personality of the participant and the specific situation. This is an interactive approach.

  • Sport-specific measures: Some questionnaires are generally not directly related to sport or physical activity. They are more general and relate more to attention styles and general moods. Sport-specific tests provide more reliable and valid measures of personality traits and states in sport and exercise contexts. Someone could test how anxious you are before a competition. A sport-specific anxiety test measures pre-competition anxiety better than a general anxiety test. Some tests have also been developed for specific sports. An example of a specific test is the Attentional and Interpersonal Style Tennis Test.

Feelings can change before and during a competition. Conditions are generally assessed shortly before (within 30 minutes) the start of a competition or physical activity. Measurements can show how someone is feeling at any given time, but feelings can change during competition. These fluctuations must be taken into account when evaluating personality and reactions to competitive situations.

The use of psychological measures.

People may want to use psychological tests to gather information about the people they want to help professionally. However, psychological assessments alone cannot predict athletic success and are sometimes misused and mishandled. It is not always clear how psychological inventories will be used. Practitioners need to understand the limitations and misuse of the tests. Before someone can administer and interpret psychological inventories, they must understand the principles of the tests and recognize measurement errors. Not all psychological tests are reliable, and even valid tests can contain measurement errors. If someone really doesn't understand the question, the result is unreliable. Culture also plays a role. If you submit African-American or Hispanic athletes to a test developed in a predominantly white population, the results may be less reliable due to cultural differences.

Sometimes people also answer questions about what they think is socially desirable, and this can affect the results as well. Psychological associations recommend that people administering the tests be aware of the limitations of the training. They must recognize the limits of their knowledge. Using only psychological tests to select players for a team is not good. This is abuse as the tests are not accurate enough to make predictions. Before completing a test, athletes must be informed of the purpose of the test and the use of the test. Athletes must also be guaranteed confidentiality. That way, they are more likely to answer truthfully. If they are afraid of exposing themselves, they may falsify the answers. Researchers must also take an intra-individual approach. If one wants to measure more subconscious or deeper aspects of the personality, one can use a projective test. These tests involve images and subjects are asked to project their feelings and thoughts onto these materials. Projective tests are difficult to assess and interpret.

Focus on personality research.

Research on personality and athletic performance from the 1960s and 1970s yielded few useful conclusions. This occurred due to statistical, methodological and interpretive problems. The researchers then divided into two camps: those with a gullible view (personality is closely related to sporting success) and those with a skeptical view (personality is not related to sporting success). Neither position has been proven correct. The fact is that there is a relationship between personality and sports performance, but it is far from perfect. Personality alone does not determine behavior in sport and exercise. Care must be taken when interpreting the results of personality research, as attributing or assuming cause-and-effect relationships between personality and achievement was a problem in many early studies.

It is difficult to define an athlete. The ambiguity in the definitions weakened the investigation and clouded the interpretation. One large study measured 16 personality factors or traits. No single personality profile was found that distinguished athletes from non-athletes. However, when athletes were categorized by sport, some differences emerged. Compared with non-athletes, athletes who participated in team sports had less abstract thinking, more dependency, less ego strength, and more extroversion. Athletes who played individual sports had higher levels of objectivity, less anxiety, more dependency, and less abstract thinking. With more and more women competing in sports, we need to understand the personality profiles of female athletes. In the 1980s, researchers discovered that successful female athletes differed markedly from the average woman in terms of their personality profiles. Female athletes were more performance oriented, aggressive, independent, and assertive compared to non-athletes. Most of the qualities are desirable for the sport. It seems that athletes share similar personality traits, regardless of whether they are male or female.

Morgan developed a model of mental health that he reported to be effective in predicting athletic success. This model suggests that positive mental health is directly related to sporting success and high levels of performance. The model predicts that an athlete who scores above normal on the Profile of Mood States (POMS) subscales for Neuroticism, Fatigue, Depression, Anger, and Confusion and below normal on Vitality compared to an athlete who scores below is the norm, all these qualities will lose effect. Morgan characterized the top successful athletes with the profile of the iceberg. This reflects positive mental health. This profile of a successful elite athlete shows strength above the population average, but tension, anger, fatigue, depression, and confusion below the population average. It's called an iceberg profile because it looks like an iceberg. The negative qualities are below the surface and the positive qualities (power) are above the surface. Less successful elite athletes have a flat profile. According to Morgan, this reflects negative mental health.

A large study looked at elite professional athletes and the results showed that the most successful athletes had the iceberg profile and more positive mental health than the less successful athletes. These statistics do not mean that psychological testing should be used to select athletes for a team. Personality tests are far from perfect, and the use of tests can result in the unfair and erroneous selection or removal of athletes from a team. Morgan's iceberg model is still supported in the literature, but has faced some criticism in recent years. Some scientists believe that the results were misinterpreted and that the profile only distinguishes athletes from non-athletes. Some investigators who performed a meta-analysis concluded that the instrument should not be used as a basis for team selection. It seems that it is not possible to realistically choose teams or predict variations in sports performance based on a psychological measure. Personal data has a specific purpose. The data can help exercise psychologists discover the conditions and characteristics of successful athletes, and can also help athletes develop skills.

personality and movement

Many psychologists have studied the relationship between personality and movement. In this part, the connections between movement and two personality dispositions are discussed.

type A behavior

People with a Type A behavior pattern have a competitive drive, a strong sense of urgency, and easily aroused hostility. The opposite of this pattern of behavior is Type B. Researchers have for the first time found an association between Type A behavior and an increased incidence of cardiovascular disease. They later hypothesized that the anger-hostility component was the most important disease-related trait. The causes of Type A behavior are unclear, but many clues point to the sociocultural environment (high performance standards and parental expectations). There have been efforts to change Type A behavior through training. These had mixed results. One study with positive results showed that a 12-week aerobic program was associated with a reduction in Type A behavior and helped participants reduce cardiovascular reactivity to mental stress. Therefore, it appears that changing Type A behavior patterns through exercise may lead to positive health benefits.


Research has shown that exercise has a positive relationship with self-concept. Some have suggested that this is due to perceptions of improved fitness rather than actual changes in fitness. Studies have not shown that changes in physical condition lead to changes in self-concept. However, it appears that exercise programs lead to significant increases in self-esteem (especially in people who initially have low self-esteem). Research on the concept of movement and self-esteem has shown that it is better to consider self-esteem not just as a general characteristic, but as a characteristic that spans different substantive dimensions (social self-concept, physical self-concept). Studies have shown that exercise participation has a greater impact on the physical dimension of self-concept.

investigate strategies

The researchers were not satisfied with the usefulness of the information they collected on the athletes' personality traits and predispositions. For this reason, many researchers have adopted the phenomenological approach to study personality. They don't study traditional traits, but rather the mental strategies, behaviors, and skills athletes use to compete. Scientists have developed a measure of sport-specific psychological abilities, the Athletic Coping Skills Inventory-28 (ACSI). This inventory provides an overall score of an athlete's psychological abilities and scores on several subscales, including peak performance under pressure, concentration, trainability, and calmness. Researchers conducted some studies using this inventory. In a study of low-performing, average-performing, and top-performing athletes (individuals judged by their coaches to be above their talent level), high-performing athletes scored higher on some subscales (focus, trainability) and, on the score general. higher than the other two groups. These results show that psychological skills can help athletes make the most of their talent. Another study evaluated professional baseball players. ACSI results are related to certain key performance indicators. The results indicated that physical ability was not related to ACSI scores, but that psychological ability explained much of the variation in performance between the different performance measures. Higher psychological ability scores have also been associated with player survival in professional baseball. Mental abilities and high-level sports performance seem to be related.

Scientists have also tried to study the differences between successful and less successful athletes using a qualitative approach. Through in-depth interviews, they try to understand the coping strategies of athletes during and before competitions. Interviews provide researchers and coaches with more detailed personality profiles of athletes than paper tests. Research has shown that, compared to less successful athletes, successful athletes focus entirely on the performance at hand and ignore irrelevant events. The most successful athletes also practice routines for dealing with unusual circumstances, learn to regulate arousal, use various pre-competition mental rehearsals, and not worry about other competitors.

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Chapter 3 - Motivation

Perhaps the best definition of motivation is the intensity and direction of one's effort. Sport psychologists may view motivation from different angles (eg, achievement motivation, intrinsic motivation). Different forms of motivation are part of the more general definition of motivation. The direction of effort is related to whether a person seeks, is attracted to, or approaches a particular situation. Effort intensity refers to how much effort a person puts into a given situation. For most people, these two concepts are closely related.

Three motivational approaches

Everyone has their own idea of ​​how motivation works. Everyone has their own model of what motivates people. People often develop this by learning what motivates them and by observing how others motivate themselves. There are many individual viewpoints, but most people classify motivation into one of three general guidelines:

resource-centric view

This view is also known as the participant-centric view. This view holds that motivated behavior is primarily a function of individual characteristics. This means that a person's needs, personality, and goals are the primary determinants of motivated behavior. There are people with personal traits that seem to predispose them to success and high motivation. Of course, there are also people who seem to lack motivation and personal goals. Most people would agree that we are affected in part by the situations we find ourselves in. Therefore, if teachers do not create a motivating learning environment, student motivation will decrease. Therefore, it is not good to ignore environmental influences on motivation. This is why sport psychologists do not advocate a trait-focused view to guide professional practice.

situation-focused view

The situation-centric view is the exact opposite of the resource-centric view. This point of view asserts that the level of motivation is primarily determined by the situation. For example, some athletes may be motivated during a training class but unmotivated in a competitive sports situation. The situation influences the motivation, but there are also situations in which someone stays motivated despite a negative environment. In some cases, the environment is not the main factor affecting a person's motivation. For this reason, sport psychologists do not recommend the situation-focused view of motivation as the most effective for practice.

interaction view

The point of view most supported by sport psychologists today is the interactional point of view. This point of view establishes that motivation results not only from factors involved (needs, personality) and not only from situational factors. According to this view, the best way to understand motivation is to examine how these two sets of factors interact. One large study looked at swimmers. Swimmers were tested swimming individually and in relays. That was the factor of the situation. The swimmers' personality traits were also assessed. The goal was to see if each swimmer was more rejection oriented (fear of disappointing others and therefore less likely to want to swim with others) or social acceptance (competing with others is seen as a positive) and what affected his motivational orientation. interim. The performance-oriented swimmers swam faster in the relay than when they swam alone. Alone, the swimmers threatened with cancellation swam faster than in the relay. The four fastest individual swimmers were not necessarily the best relays. Bringing together the best athletes doesn't mean you'll have the best team.

The five guidelines for building motivation.

There are some basic guidelines for the interactional motivation model that coaches, teachers, and leaders can use:

1: both characteristics and situations

If you want to increase motivation, consider both personal and situational factors. Sometimes, coaches attribute the lack of motivation of their students to personal characteristics. Other times, they do not take into account the personal characteristics of their students and place all the blame on the situation. Motivation arises from a combination of situational and personal factors. Therefore, coaches should not only focus on situational or personal factors, but both.

2: Multiple reasons why people get involved

If you want to recognize and understand people's reasons for playing sports, you need constant efforts. This understanding can be obtained in different ways. One is to find out why people engage in physical activity. Researchers know why most people exercise. Children are motivated to participate in sports through challenge, skill development, excitement, and fun. Adults have similar motivations to adolescents, but adults rate their health motivations as more important and skill development as less important. Motives change across age groups, and studies show that the motives of adults are less selfish than those of younger adults. There is also a gender difference. Studies have shown that female college students' exercise behaviors are more motivated by extrinsic factors, such as weight control, and male college students' exercise behaviors are more motivated by intrinsic factors, such as strength. Self-determination theory holds that all human beings are motivated to satisfy three general needs: the need to feel autonomous (have the fate of the game in their hands), be competent (for example, be a good swimmer), and be socially connected. (for example, from a team). The way in which they are fulfilled results in a motivational continuum that goes from lack of motivation to extrinsic motivation and intrinsic motivation.

You must remember that people participate for more than one reason, that they have conflicting reasons for participating, and that they have common and unique reasons. There are also gender differences in motivation. One study looked at young children's participation in sports. Fun was the reason most valued by all children. However, girls cited benefits, competition, and fitness as the top reasons, while boys cited competition, benefits, and fitness more frequently. Boys are more attracted to the competitive aspect of the sport and girls more to the social aspect. There are also differences between cultures when it comes to motivation. One study found that American youth were primarily motivated by competition and the need to improve, and Chinese youth were more committed to social belonging.

Participants need to be observed and trainers need to continue to monitor their motives. This is because the reasons can change over time.

3: Change the environment

Coaches need to use what they learn about the participants to structure the sport environment to meet the needs of the participants. People do not have the same desire for competition and recreation, so opportunities must be created for both. Various options should be offered as people have different needs. Trainers also need to accommodate individuals in groups. Some people need the coach to be with them, others need the coach to be positive. Personalization is not always easy to achieve. Some classes are large, and today's teachers must be realistic and imaginative in customizing their environments.

4: Affective motivation

Leaders and trainers play a crucial role in influencing the motivation of the participants. Most of the trainers really believe that they have an important influence on the motivation of the participants. The influence can be indirect: an energetic teacher will positively reinforce the lesson in this way. Teachers who are not optimistic can affect the mood of their students. Teachers need to keep this in mind, and when they are having a bad day, they may need to act more optimistic than they feel.

5: Use behavior modification to change unwanted motives

Sometimes trainers need to change a participant's reasons for participation. A soccer player may be involved in the sport primarily to harm another person. Your trainer should use behavior modification techniques to change the unwanted motivation. The coach should encourage good and fair play, punish aggressive play with the intent to hurt others, and discuss appropriate behavior with the player.

A realistic view of motivation.

Motivation is important, but it is not the only variable that influences behavior. Sportswriters often attribute a team's performance to motivational attributes. However, a team's performance is often affected by non-motivating factors, such as injuries, failure to learn new skills, or playing against a better team. Sociological, medical and physiological factors are also important to sport and must be taken into account in a performance analysis. Some motivational factors are easier to influence than others. Professionals must consider the time and money required to change the motivating factors that may affect them.

achievement motivation

Achievement motivation is a person's effort to accomplish a task, overcome obstacles, achieve excellence, and be better than others. A person with high achievement motivation strives for the success of the task, is proud of what she has accomplished, and is willing to persist in the face of failure. For this reason, coaches and teachers are interested in achievement motivation. Achievement motivation was first considered from a trait-oriented perspective and is now considered from an interactional perspective. In sport, achievement motivation is called competitiveness.


Competitiveness can be seen as performance behavior in a competitive context where social evaluation is a key component. People need to be aware of situation-specific achievement orientation, as some people are highly achievement oriented in one setting but not another. Competition can be against/with others, but people can also compete with themselves. This can happen when they are trying to beat the old time or when they are trying to get stronger (by lifting more weights).

Four Theories of Achievement Motivation

There are four theories that explain what motivated people to act. These four theories are discussed. A fifth theory is discussed in the sixth chapter.

need for performance theory

This theory is an interactional view and considers situational and personal factors as important predictors of behavior. This theory has five components: personality factors, situational factors, resultant biases, emotional responses, and performance-related behavior.

Personality factors consider two underlying achievement motives: achieving success and avoiding failure. Behavior is said to be influenced by the balance of these motives. Low achievers show low motivation to achieve success and high motivation to avoid failure. You are preoccupied with thoughts of failure. High achievers are the opposite of that. Situation factors consider the probability of success and the incentive value of success. The probability of success depends on the difficulty of the task and who you are up against. The resulting bias results from considering a person's achievement motivation in relation to situational factors. High achievers look for challenges where they have a 50% chance of winning. Underachievers generally avoid such challenges. Emotional responses consist of pride and shame. High achievers and underachievers want pride and minimize shame, but they handle the situation differently. As a result, high performers focus more on pride and low performers focus more on shame. Performance is the fifth component and indicates how the four components interact to affect behavior.

attribution theory

Attribution theory studies how people explain their success and failure. This view holds that thousands of possible explanations for failure and success can be grouped into a few categories. These categories are stability, the location of causation (within or outside the person), and the location of control (whether or not a factor is under the control of the person). An athlete may attribute failure or success to a variety of possible reasons. The perceived causes of failure and success are called attributions. Attributions affect expectations of future failure and success, as well as emotional responses. When an athlete attributes performance success to a stable cause (his high level of performance from him), he expects the result to come back in the future and therefore becomes more motivated. Attributions to controllable internal factors (skill) rather than external or uncontrollable factors (luck) often result in emotional responses such as pride and shame.

performance goal theory

According to this theory, three factors interact to determine a person's motivation: achievement goal, perceived ability, and achievement behavior. Understanding a person's motivation also means understanding what success and failure mean for that person. One way to do this is to look at a person's performance goals and how they interact with that person's perceptions of self-esteem and competence.

An outcome goal orientation focuses on comparing and surpassing others. In this case, winning results in high perceived ability and losing results in low perceived ability. A task goal orientation focuses on improving past performance. People can also be both task and results oriented. Sport psychologists believe that a task orientation leads to work ethic, perseverance, and optimal performance more often than a results orientation. Task orientation protects one from frustration and lack of motivation when others perform better. Task-oriented people are not afraid of failure and choose realistic and moderately difficult tasks.

The researchers also identified social goal orientations as determinants of behavior. People with high social goal orientation rate their competence in terms of belonging to the group and recognition of being liked by others. They are also motivated by the need to belong to groups. This orientation is related to joy, competence and the intrinsic motivation of people.

According to some researchers, people characterized by an entity vision focus on the result and see its capacity as immutable and invariable. People with an incremental approach take a task-goal perspective and believe that they can change their abilities through work and effort. Studies have shown that people who take an entity approach are characterized by maladaptive motivational patterns.

People can be results or goal oriented and/or success or avoidance oriented. A mastery oriented person wants to improve their time, an avoidance oriented person doesn't want to run slower than their time, a results oriented person wants to win the race and beat another person, and an avoidance oriented person wants to run faster than their time. You don't want to lose someone.

Competitive Motivation Theory

This theory states that people are motivated to feel competent, and this feeling is the main determinant of motivation. Athletes' perceptions of control work together with competency assessments to influence their motivation. These do not affect motivation directly, but affect affective states, which in turn affect motivation. A person's competence differs between domains.

Development of competitiveness and motivation for achievement

Achievement motivation and competitiveness are supposed to develop in three stages. These phases are sequential. The age at which people reach each stage varies greatly, and not everyone reaches the final stage.

  1. Autonomous Competence Level: This level is believed to occur before 4 years of age. In this phase, children focus on mastering their environment and proving themselves.

  2. Social Comparison Phase: This phase begins around age 5 and the child focuses on directly comparing their performance to others.

  3. Integrated Level: This level includes autonomous performance strategies and social comparison. A person who has this fully integrated knows when it is appropriate to compete with others and when it is appropriate to adopt self-referential standards. This is the most desirable stage and there is no typical age to enter this stage.

It is important to recognize the development stages of competitiveness because it helps us understand the behavior of the people with whom we work.

Motivation for achievement in professional practice.

Coaches must recognize the factors that interact in performance motivation. You should look at the goal orientations of the participants, the attributes they tend to make about their performance, and the situations they avoid or address. They can also reduce inappropriate performance biases by helping people set task goals and minimize outcome goals. You need to let the athlete focus on the approach targets. Trainers also need to monitor and change assignment comments. They must also assess and correct inappropriate self-attributions made by participants. Coaches should also help participants determine when it is appropriate to compete and when it is appropriate to focus on individual improvement. Coaches also need to improve perceptions of competence and sense of control.

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Chapter 4 - Stress, excitement and anxiety

Many people use the terms "stress," "arousal," and "anxiety" interchangeably, but exercise psychologists make a distinction between them. Arousal can be seen as a mixture of psychological and physiological activity in a person and refers to the intensity dimensions of motivation at a given moment. The arousal continuum ranges from not at all aroused to fully aroused. People who are highly excited have an increased heart rate and sweat. You will be physically and mentally activated. Arousal can be associated with pleasant or unpleasant events. Anxiety is a negative emotional state characterized by nervousness and worry associated with activation of the body. The thought component of fear (worry) is called cognitive anxiety. Somatic anxiety is the level of perceived physical arousal. There is also a distinction between state anxiety and trait anxiety.

Sometimes we refer to anxiety as a stable component of personality and other times we use the word to describe a variable state of mind. The mood change component is called state anxiety. A player's anxiety level can change from moment to moment during a game. Cognitive state anxiety is the degree to which a person worries or has negative thoughts, and somatic state anxiety is the moment-to-moment change in perceived physiological arousal. The somatic anxiety state is not a change in a person's physical arousal, but rather a person's perception of such a change. Studies also suggest that there is a component of perceived control in the state of anxiety. This refers to a person's belief that he has the resources and ability to face challenges. Trait anxiety is part of the personality, a disposition that affects behavior. Trait anxiety can predispose a person to perceive a variety of circumstances as threatening, even if they are objectively neither physically nor psychologically dangerous. Trait anxiety consists of three components and a global score. The first component is the somatic trait anxiety (perception of intensified physical symptoms), the second is the cognitive trait anxiety (the degree to which the person normally worries), and the third component is concentration disorder (the degree to which the person often has difficulty concentrating). during the competition). 🇧🇷

Measure anxiety and arousal

Exercise psychologists measure arousal, state anxiety, and trait anxiety in a variety of ways. To measure arousal, they look at changes in heart rate, biochemistry, and respiration. They also study how people rate their arousal on a variety of statements and scales. These scales are self-report scales. Fear of the state is measured by global and multidimensional self-report measures. With global measures, people rate how nervous they feel using self-report scales ranging from low to high. On multidimensional self-report measures, people rate how anxious and physiologically aroused they feel. There are also sports-specific scales that measure state of anxiety in sport. One such scale is the Competitive State Anxiety Inventory-2. There are also global and multidimensional self-reports that measure trait anxiety. These are slightly different from state anxiety assessments in that they ask people how they normally feel rather than how they feel now.

A direct relationship has been found between a person's state anxiety and trait anxiety. People who do well on measures of trait anxiety also have more state anxiety in highly competitive situations. However, this relationship is not perfect. Anxiety can also fluctuate during competition. Future interventions should assess these changes in anxiety. This can be done later. Studies have shown that athletes are good at assessing their fears afterwards.

To emphasize

Stress occurs when there is a significant imbalance between the psychological and physical demands placed on a person and that person's ability to respond to conditions where failure to meet the demands has serious consequences. According to McGrath, stress consists of four interconnected phases: environmental demands, perceived demand, stress response, and behavioral outcomes. In the first step, a person is needed. This demand can be physical or psychological. The second step in the process is the individual perception of psychological or physical requirements. A person's trait anxiety level affects how that person perceives the world. People with high trait anxiety tend to perceive situations as threatening more than people with low trait anxiety. The third phase of the process is the person's psychological and physical response to a perception. The fourth stage is the behavior of the person under stress. This last stage is fed back from the first. Understanding the stress cycle is important for professionals because they need to know at what stage to make changes to reduce stress.

There are many specific sources of stress. Major life events, such as a job change or death in the family, and everyday problems, such as a problem with colleagues, can cause stress and affect mental and physical health. In athletes, the stressors are performance problems. This can include performance concerns, doubts, expenses, travel, non-sports relationships, coaching leadership, and physical risks. Injured elite athletes experience psychological, rehabilitative, financial, physical, career stress, and missed opportunities. Even coaches have sources of stress. This includes recruiting, communication with athletes, pressure to play multiple roles, and lack of control over team performance. Referees also have sources of stress, including difficulties with coaches and physical abuse. Young athletes are also stressed by parental pressure. Studies have shown that high pressure in a high ego motivational climate (outcome focus) increases fear perceptions and high pressure in a high mastery motivational climate (improvement focus) decreases fear perceptions.

situational sources of stress

There are two common causes of situational stress. These two are the importance placed on an event or participant and the uncertainty surrounding the outcome of that event. In general, the more important the event, the more stressful it is. Taking a test is more stressful than a practice test. The meaning attributed to an event is different for different people. Uncertainty is also a major source of situational stress. The greater the uncertainty, the greater the stress. Often people cannot do anything against uncertainty. Sometimes coaches, teachers, and sports medicine professionals create unnecessary uncertainty by not telling participants certain things. These things could be how to avoid injury, starting lineup, or what to expect while recovering from a sports injury. Athletes can also experience stress due to the uncertainty in their lives. Studies have shown that uncertainties about career, change and the future after sport are the main sources of stress.

Personal sources of stress.

There are two personality dispositions associated with heightened state anxiety responses: high trait anxiety and low self-esteem. A third disposition to anxiety is social anxiety. The trait of fear has already been discussed. Someone who pays more attention to traits perceives competition as more threatening than someone who pays less attention to traits. Athletes with low self-esteem have less confidence and more state of anxiety than athletes with high self-esteem. Increasing self-confidence is an important way to reduce the level of anxiety that people experience. Social body anxiety is a personality disposition and is defined as the degree to which people become anxious when other people are looking at their bodies. Some people can get very nervous when others assess their bodies. People with high body social anxiety experience more stress during fitness checks and have more negative thoughts about their bodies than people without this anxiety. Studies have also shown a negative relationship between anxiety about body type and exercise behavior and perceived physical ability. People who suffer severely from social body anxiety tend to avoid fitness environments and struggle with the motivation to participate in them. This is because they fear how others will evaluate their bodies. Women, in particular, are prone to anxiety about the construction of the social body. Studies have shown that reducing physical anxiety by having people exercise in less revealing clothing increases participation in physical activity.

Emotion, Anxiety and Realization

Many exercise psychologists study the relationship between arousal, anxiety, emotional states, and performance. Sports psychologists have studied the connection between anxiety and performance for decades. There are no definitive conclusions about this relationship. Various theories are discussed.

propulsion theory

In the 1960s, psychologists considered the relationship between arousal and satisfaction to be direct and linear. According to this theory, as a person's arousal or state of anxiety increases, so does their performance. The more enthusiastic someone is, the better they perform. Of course, everyone can remember cases where they got excited, and then it got worse. There isn't much scientific support for the drive theory. In the first chapter, the theory of social facilitation was introduced. Zajonc also used impulse theory with social facilitation theory. He showed that when people perform simple or well-learned skills, greater arousal facilitates performance. But when people perform complex skills, the presence of others increases arousal and the person performs worse. This means that it is better to remove the audience in learning situations. Social facilitation and drive theories do not explain how an audience affects the performance of a person with well-learned skills. Theories predict that performance increases as arousal increases. This would mean that highly-skilled athletes excel in any high-pressure situation, but this is not the case.

Inverted U hypothesis

This view holds that at low levels of arousal, performance will be below average. The exercises are not activated. As arousal increases, so does performance, but that's for an optimal level. Further increases in arousal lead to a drop in performance. This is represented by an inverted U. There are many coaches and athletes who accept the general notion of the inverted U hypothesis. However, this theory has been criticized. Critics question whether ideal arousal always occurs in the middle of the arousal continuum.

Individualized zones of optimal function

This model (IZOF) establishes that athletes have an ideal anxiety state zone where they perform best. Poor performance occurs outside of this zone. This model differs from the inverted U model in that the optimal level of state anxiety does not always occur in the middle of the continuum. This differs from person to person. Furthermore, according to this theory, the optimal zone of the state of anxiety is not a single point, but rather a range. Trainers should help participants identify and reach their own specific zone of ideal state of anxiety. Much literature supports this model. The IZOF vision also states that there are negative and positive emotions that enhance performance and have a dysfunctional impact on performance. A particular emotion may be associated with performance in a positive way for one person and a negative one for another.

multidimensional distress theory

This theory predicts that the state of cognitive anxiety is negatively related to performance. This means that the state of cognitive anxiety leads to reduced performance. This theory predicts that somatic state anxiety (physiologically) is related to performance in an inverted U shape. An increase in anxiety will facilitate performance at an optimal level, and additional anxiety will result in a drop in performance. Studies have shown that the two components of anxiety predict performance differently, but the accurate predictions of multidimensional anxiety theory have not been consistently supported. This theory has little support in terms of performance predictions and therefore will not be very useful in practice.

catastrophic phenomenon

Thus, performance depends on the interplay of cognitive anxiety and arousal. This model predicts that physiological arousal is related to performance in an inverted U shape. However, this is only true if an athlete is not worried or if he has a low state of cognitive anxiety. If the athlete is preoccupied, the increases in arousal will eventually reach some sort of threshold. This is past the arousal sweet spot, and after that there will be a drop in performance. This fall is called a catastrophe. Physiological arousal (somatic anxiety) can have different effects on performance depending on the level of cognitive anxiety a person experiences. When there is a high concern, performance drops drastically when overdrive and disaster occurs. In this case, recovery will take longer. It is difficult to test this model.

(Video) Psychology in Sport

investment theory

This theory states that how arousal affects performance depends on a person's interpretation of their level of arousal. Some people may interpret high arousal as uncomfortable anxiety, while others may interpret it as pleasant arousal. We believe that athletes make rapid changes (reversals) in their interpretation of arousal. This theory predicts that, for best performance, athletes should interpret their arousal as pleasant arousal rather than unpleasant fear. Reversal theory contributes to our understanding of the relationship between arousal and performance in two ways. The first way is to emphasize that a person's interpretation of arousal is significant. The second form is the theory that athletes can reverse their positive or negative interpretations of arousal from time to time. Few scientists have tested the predictions of this theory, so there are no firm conclusions about the scientific predictions of this theory.

The direction of fear and its intensity.

It used to be thought that anxiety only had a negative impact on performance. Some researchers have shown that people can view anxiety symptoms as either positive and performance-enhancing or negative and detrimental to performance. The first is said to be supportive and the second debilitating. To fully understand the relationship between anxiety and performance, one must examine both the intensity of a person's anxiety and the direction of it. Research has shown that perceiving fear as an enabler leads to superior performance and perceiving it as debilitating leads to poor performance. When an environmental stressor occurs, a person's exposure depends on individual factors such as self-esteem and trait anxiety. When that person feels in control, they will find the anxious state to be supportive, and when they don't feel in control, the anxious state will be debilitating. Therefore, the athlete's perception of control determines what the state of anxiety looks like. Studies have shown support for this association. Artists can also be trained to use their anxiety symptoms effectively and productively, according to a study. Athletes must learn a repertoire of psychological skills to interpret anxiety symptoms as support. Some researchers argue that the positive emotion of arousal can enhance performance, rather than interpreting fear as promotion. There are also some personal and situational variables that can affect the directional response. Some of them are neuroticism, extroversion, self-confidence, and psychological abilities. Some of the situational variables are skill level, expectations, goal achievement, and performance. Ability level is the individual difference variable that most consistently determines whether anxiety is interpreted as debilitating or empowering.


The prevalence of anxiety has received little attention in sport psychology. It seems reasonable to assume that the frequency with which athletes experience anxiety symptoms is an important component of the anxiety response. Studies have shown that athletes who viewed fear as an enabler were less likely to experience cognitive anxiety and more likely to have self-esteem during the run-up to competition than athletes who viewed fear as debilitating. A coach must know how often an athlete has anxiety symptoms, not just how intense the symptoms are and how they are interpreted.

Why does arousal affect performance?

By understanding why arousal affects performance, we can help ourselves and others regulate arousal. There are two things that explain how increased arousal affects athletic performance: changes in attention, focus, and visual search patterns, and the second is increased fatigue, muscle tension, and lack of coordination.

Fatigue, muscle tension and coordination difficulties

People who suffer from stress often report muscle aches, pains, and aches. Increased excitement and state of anxiety can cause increased muscle tension and also affect coordination. Studies have shown that increased muscle tension, incoordination, and fatigue contribute to an athlete's lower performance under high-impact conditions.

Attention, changes in visual search and concentration.

Increased arousal can also affect performance through changes in focus, attention, and visual search patterns. This is because increased arousal narrows the artist's field of attention. Increased arousal causes a narrowing of the field of attention, and this negatively affects performance on tasks that require a broad focus. People also tend to scan the game environment less frequently when arousal is high. Arousal can also cause changes in attention levels, affecting attention styles. Athletes must learn to direct their attention to the appropriate task cues. Everyone also has a dominant attention style. Increased arousal can cause athletes to switch to a dominant attention style, which may not be the best style for the situation. Increased arousal also causes athletes to pay attention to inappropriate cues. Most people perform well-learned skills when fully focused on the task at hand. Too much cognitive state anxiety can cause athletes to focus on inappropriate task cues, becoming overly self-aware. This also affects the optimal concentration. According to research, there are three types of thoughts associated with cognitive disorders in athletes: situational thoughts, escape thoughts, and performance concerns. Studies have also shown that people recognize and process visual cues differently when they are anxious. The complexity of how anxiety affects athletic performance is reflected in processing efficiency theory. This theory states that increased anxiety impairs working memory resources. In the short term, this does not negatively affect exercise performance, but as anxiety increases, the benefits of increased exertion are outweighed by reduced attention spans.

Trainers can use all the things mentioned above to practice. You must identify the optimal emotions related to arousal, recognize the interplay of personal and situational factors, and recognize signs of arousal and anxiety. Coaches must also tailor training strategies to individuals and help athletes gain confidence.

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Chapter 5 - Competition and Cooperation

Competition can refer to a variety of situations. People can compete with each other, against themselves, against objects or time records. Most researchers focus on situations in which people compete against others in organized physical activities. The competition has a prize structure and the success of one athlete automatically leads to the failure of another. Success can also be measured in cooperation. It is a social process in which performance is evaluated and rewarded in terms of the collective performance of a group working together to achieve a specific goal. The rewards are shared by everyone in the group, and the success of the group depends on the collective performance of all participants. When a team wins a championship, they have a share in the victory, even if one player contributed more to the victory than another player. Successful, hard-working, achievement-oriented people are not necessarily competitive. These people can combine strong achievement orientations with cooperative orientations. Cooperative people are just as successful as competitive people. Studies have shown that competitive reward structures are useful for simple short-term physical tasks, but are less effective than cooperative reward structures for complex tasks. Few everyday situations are purely cooperative or competitive. Some researchers argue that most social interactions involve some kind of goal-directed behavior that rewards one person for achieving the goal while requiring some kind of cooperation from others.

competition as a process

According to some scholars, the competition is more than just one event. They think of it as a process that involves four distinct events or phases. The phases are different, but also interconnected. People experience the competitive process differently. The characteristics of a person can influence their reactions in competition. Each phase is influenced by the other phases and by external environmental factors, such as external feedback and rewards. The four phases are discussed:

Stage 1: Objective competitive situation

The objective competitive situation includes a benchmark and at least one other person. The benchmark can be a person's past performance, another person's performance, or an idealized performance.

Stage 2: Subjective competitive situation

People have to evaluate a situation one way. The second stage deals with how a person perceives, accepts, and evaluates the objective competitive situation. The background and characteristics of a person are important at this stage. The importance of the competitive situation and motivation can also influence the subjective assessment of the environment. Highly competitive people tend to seek competitive situations and are more motivated to achieve something in them than less competitive people. Competitiveness alone cannot predict how a person will react to a given competitive situation. Situational variables also have a strong influence on behavior.

The Sports Orientation Questionnaire (SOQ) was developed to provide a reliable measure of competitiveness. Using this questionnaire, the researchers found three types of competitive orientations that represent different subjective outcomes of a competitive situation. These three are competitiveness, profit orientation and goal orientation. Competitiveness is the desire to succeed in competitive sports. Competitive people love to compete. Winner orientation is a focus on interpersonal comparison and winning the competition. Winning means that beating other competitors is more important than improving your own standards. Goal orientation is a focus on personal performance standards. The focus is on improving your own performance, not beating the competition. A person's competitive orientation influences how they perceive the competitive situation. The research found that athletes generally outperform non-athletes on all three subscales, but particularly on the competitive aspect of the SOQ. This study also found that most athletes focus on improving their own performance rather than winning. Most athletes cite performance enhancement as their goal. Coaches need to figure out if their athletes are competitive or not and address it.

Stage 3: Reaction

After assessing a situation, a person can choose to approach or avoid it. The chosen reaction initiates the third stage. If the person decides not to compete, the reaction stops there. A competitive response can occur on a physiological, behavioral, or psychological level, or on all three levels. There are internal and external psychological factors that can affect a person's response. Some internal factors are motivation and self-confidence. The weather, the weather, and the enemy's abilities are some external influences.

Stage 4: Consequences

The final phase results from the comparison of the athlete's response with the comparison standard. The consequences can be positive or negative, the positive ones generally associated with success and the negative ones with failure. The athlete's perception of the consequences is more important than the objective result. The feelings of failure and success are repeated in the process and affect subsequent competition. It is important that coaches and parents know how to help athletes feel more successful in sports experiences. You can take a participant-centric approach by changing the rules and becoming more personally involved, which can create positive experiences for all participants. Competition is a learned social process and is influenced by the social environment. Competition is just a process and it is neither good nor bad. The quality of leadership determines whether the contest will be a positive or negative experience for the participant. There are many factors that can affect the relationship between the four phases.

Studies on competition and cooperation

In the next section, some popular psychological studies on the process of competition and cooperation are reviewed.

The first study looking at the effects of competition on performance was conducted by Triplett in 1898. He found that runners performed differently when running alone, with a pacemaker, or in competition with another runner. He found that cyclists were faster when racing against or with another cyclist than when they were racing alone against the clock. Competing against competitors has been shown to improve performance. Morton Deutsch asked university students to solve puzzle problems over a period of 5 weeks. The students were either in a competitive group or a cooperative group. The students in the competitive group were told that the person in the group who solved the most average number of puzzles would receive a reward. Students in the other group were told that they would be evaluated based on how their group ranked relative to other groups. The results showed that the students in the cooperative group communicated, shared information, solved more puzzles, and made friends. The students in the competitive group were self-centered, mistrustful, and uncommunicative. It seems that teams work best together when they have a common goal, and achieving that goal yields similar rewards for everyone in the group. Coaches must ensure that all members of a team strive for common goals.

competition and aggressiveness

A primary focus on winning can lead to animosity and aggression between teams. Some former professional players have shared stories of intentionally harming members of the opposing team. Some even received rewards for kicking players out of games. At one point, a mother even conspired to murder a young woman who was competing to be a high school cheerleader so that her own daughter could be selected for the team. However, only a small percentage of athletic competition leads to major aggression. Competitive sport can help athletes learn to work together and reduce excessive emphasis on winning.

Effects of competition and cooperation on performance

A large meta-analysis compared studies on the effect of cooperation and competition on achievement. Most studies have shown that cooperation leads to better performance than competition. Many studies have also shown that cooperation promotes higher performance than working independently. It appears that collaborative efforts are more effective in promoting achievement than competitive efforts. Other studies have also shown that working together with a collaborative mindset improves performance levels, rather than focusing on individual improvement or competition. Collaborative efforts work better than competitive efforts when a performer must work with another person to achieve a goal. However, research has shown that people perform better when in competition with others than when doing homework alone. This is because people in the competitive condition show greater effort, greater muscular activity, and more pleasure than participants in the non-competitive condition. Studies have also shown that performance in team competitions was better than in individual competitions due to pleasure, effort, and fear. It seems that people feel the need to try harder because their partner depends on them and the anxiety they feel is positively affecting task completion.

There are no negative consequences of competition per se, but the overemphasis on winning is what is counterproductive. Reasonable competition has the following characteristics: the importance of winning is not so high as to cause stress, it is voluntary, people must have a reasonable chance of winning, relative progress can be monitored, and the rules are clear. It is also true that competitive orientation in individual and team sports sometimes leads to superior performance. It seems that many situations in the world of sports call for a mix of cooperative and competitive strategies and orientations. The real challenge is finding the right combination for each situation. Some researchers argue that cooperation and competition should be seen as complementary.

Is competition good or bad?

Competitive ethics is a driving force in sport. People think that competition brings out the best in them. There are many Americans who equate success with winning and success with hitting. Many people consider the spirit of competition to be synonymous with the American way of life. This concern for profit can lead to fraud. Sometimes athletes who are not of a specific age participate in a specific competition that requires the participants to be of a specific age. Steroid abuse is also a form of cheating. Kohn argued against certain competition myths, such as that competition motivates people to do better or that it is part of human nature. According to Kohn, competition has a number of negative consequences, including creating stress, promoting interpersonal hostility, eroding self-esteem, promoting aggression, and generating envy and shame. The adverse effects of competition do not necessarily mean that competition is bad. There have been many situations where competition has led to positive and healthy results. The way we treat our opponents can also affect our attitude towards the competition. An example of this is Gandhi. He viewed his political opponents as teachers because they pushed him to do better. The quality of adult leadership provided by parents and coaches is critical in determining whether competition has a positive or negative impact on young athletes. Leaders must teach children when to cooperate and when to compete. In most team sports, competition and cooperation occur simultaneously. It seems that an integrated approach offers the best opportunities for personal development.

strengthen cooperation

Most people in the business or educational environment are familiar with the positive results that result from collaborative efforts. Most sports situations remain focused on competition, and many sports psychology texts emphasize the various psychological factors that enhance performance in competitive situations. There are some benefits that competitive sports offer. This includes discipline and character development. There is so much evidence of the positive effects of cooperation that it is important to see how cooperative games can complement competitive sports. Orlick sports psychologists have argued that a game's design greatly influences the dominant behavioral response. Competition and cooperation can be seen as complementary relationships and give people unique potential in sport. Cooperation and competition have different potential interactions. A trainer needs to understand this in order to structure a good mix of physical activities. Most games fall into one of these categories:

Philosophy of cooperative games

It is rare for a game to emphasize both cooperative ends and cooperative means. Some have taken steps to develop alternatives to competitive sports and gaming. According to Orlick, many competitive sports for young athletes are designed around elimination principles. Usually there is only one winner and everyone else loses. This is probably one of the reasons for the high withdrawal rate in youth competitive sport. It also seems that children are conditioned to the importance of winning and therefore it is difficult to play just for fun. Most cooperative games require little to no equipment or money. Everyone can play and the rules can be changed for a specific situation. In these games, children learn to collaborate, share and empathize. This is not to say that cooperative games are better than competitive ones. Therefore, children should have the opportunity to play both games.

Working together promotes the pleasure of sport and communication. Superior performance is often achieved compared to the competition. People should focus on collaboration and have little healthy competition. Team building activities can enhance collaboration and competition. Cooperation should not replace competition. Trainers must design games to be both cooperative and competitive. These should provide positive feedback and emphasize collaboration. You should also allow children to play in different positions. You should also try not to count points in games. You must maximize participation and opportunities to learn skills and sports. Many studies have shown that special cooperative games teach children to be cooperative and learn to empathize.

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Chapter 6 - Reinforcement, Feedback, and Intrinsic Motivation

people need feedback. They need a pat on the back or some guidance. Reinforcement is the use of rewards and punishments that decrease or increase the probability that the same or similar response will occur in the future. There are two principles underlying reinforcement. The first is that when doing something that has good consequences (receiving a reward), people will try to repeat the behavior to get positive consequences. The second is that people try not to repeat this behavior when they do something that has an unpleasant consequence. In the real world, amplification principles are more complex. The same reinforcer can affect people differently. People can't always do the behavior reinforced. You need to understand all the reinforcers available to a person and how that person values ​​them. However, coaches and teachers are often unaware of competing motives and reinforcements.

affect behavior

There are different ways of teaching and training. There is a positive approach that rewards positive behavior and increases the likelihood that the desired responses will occur again. The negative approach focuses on punishing undesirable behavior and this should reduce inappropriate behavior. The positive approach aims to reinforce desired behavior through rewards, and the negative approach focuses on eliminating undesirable behavior through punishment. Most coaches try to motivate their athletes through a combination of negative and positive approaches.

positive reinforcement

Sports psychologists recommend a positive motivational approach. In this way, they try to avoid the possible negative side effects of punishment as the main focus. Studies have shown that athletes who play for positive coaches enjoy their sporting experience more, like their coaches and teammates more, and have better team cohesion. Reinforcement can take many forms, such as verbal praise, smiles, and other non-verbal behaviors. Positive rewards must be given in a good way. Rewards must match the needs of the athletes who receive them. There are different types of amplifiers. Social reinforcers are praise and slaps, material reinforcers are trophies and medals, activity reinforcers play a game and perform different positions, and special outings when reinforcers have a team party and go to a professional game. Each person wants a different type of reward. A physical education teacher may have students complete a questionnaire to determine their type of reward. Coaches should make a list of the types of reinforcement to which athletes respond best. Sometimes they also reward the entire team instead of a specific individual. The types of rewards that people receive from others are called extrinsic. The other rewards are called intrinsic because they reside within a person. An example of this is pride. Coaches cannot offer intrinsic rewards directly, but they can structure the environment to foster intrinsic motivation. Studies have shown that athletes tend to be more intrinsically motivated when the environment is more focused on learning and effort than competition and outcome.

Reinforcement programs must be effective. During skill development phases, desirable responses should be reinforced frequently, probably on a rolling schedule. This requires a reward after each correct answer. Studies have shown that continuous feedback not only motivates, but also gives the student feedback on how they are doing. Once a specific skill has been mastered, the timeline can gradually be shortened. Coaches can reduce the amount of feedback they give their athletes, or they can ask athletes to generate their own feedback. The sooner reinforcement is given after a response, the greater the behavioral effects. This is especially the case when people are learning new skills. Once someone has mastered a skill, it's less important to immediately improve it. However, it is still important that correct behaviors are reinforced at specific points.

appropriate rewards

It is important to choose the correct reward behaviors. You can't reward people every time they do something right. People must choose the most appropriate and important behaviors and focus on rewarding them. There are many coaches who focus their rewards on performance results, but there are other behaviors that need to be reinforced. When someone learns a new skill, they can make mistakes. It can take a long time to master the skill. This can be frustrating for the student, so it is important to reward small improvements in skill learning. This technique is called modeling. This allows people to keep improving as they get closer to the desired answer. People are rewarded for performance close to desired performance.

Coaches who value winning only reward players based on the result. If a person performs a skill correctly, that's all he can do. A coach should focus on the athlete's performance rather than the result of the performance, as the result is not always in the hands of the athlete. Coaches must also recognize effort as part of performance. Not everyone can be successful in sports. When athletes know they will be recognized, not just criticized, for trying new and difficult skills, they won't be afraid to try the new skill. Studies have shown that youth who received achievement-based feedback (nice try) performed better than those who received skill-based feedback (you're talented). This is particularly the case after an accident. These children showed more pleasure in tasks and perseverance than children who were praised for their high ability. The effort seems to be crucial to generate resistance. Emotional and social skills must also be rewarded. When someone is under pressure to win, it's easy to forget the importance of fair play. Athletes who demonstrate good behavior, responsibility, and self-control should be recognized and empowered. Some popular athletes and coaches were not good role models. Participants should also receive feedback on the accuracy and success of their moves. The feedback given must be sincere. Feedback must also be behavioral. Studies have shown that the way corrective feedback is provided makes a difference in a performer's motivation, performance, and emotional regulation. Trainers should provide corrective feedback in response to errors in a way that supports autonomy. This leads to higher intrinsic motivation and performance.

Feedback Benefits

Performance feedback can benefit athletes in many ways. Two of the main functions are to motivate and guide the athlete. Motivational feedback attempts to facilitate performance by building trust, encouraging greater effort, and creating a positive climate. Feedback can also be motivating, serving as reinforcement for the performer. This can evoke positive or negative feelings. Another motivating function of feedback is to help set goals. Instructional feedback provides information about specific behaviors to perform. Complex skills can be broken down into smaller parts, creating a more effective learning environment. A recent development in feedback is a technique called the method of error gain (MAE). This technique is based on the assumption that participants can learn to correct their movements through their mistakes. Athletes are asked to reinforce their main flaw during a performance. That way they'll have a better understanding of what not to do and can better recalibrate the whole move on future attempts. Studies have supported the effectiveness of MAE.

apply punishment

Positive reinforcement should be the way to change behavior. There are some trainers who use punishment as the main motivator. Many educators oppose the use of punishment by coaches. Others argue that the punishment may have an educational purpose. Punishment may be able to control and change negative behavior. There are many arguments for using punishment in sports. Punishment can prevent future cheating or transgressions. Punishing offenders assures others that everyone will be held accountable for their actions.

However, there are arguments that suggest that the punishment is unfounded and related to the negative behavior. Punishment can be humiliating and create shame. Shame is closely related to failure or weakness when it is related to obtaining a belief. Punishment also creates fear of failure. People who are afraid of failure are not motivated by victory, and studies have shown that athletes who are afraid of failure perform worse in competition and are more likely to get injured. They also like sports less and give up faster. Punishment can also unknowingly reinforce unwanted behavior by drawing attention to it. Punishment can also create an uncomfortable learning environment. This can create animosity and resentment between athletes and coaches. Athletes can lose motivation this way.

There are coaches who believe that punishing athletes for mistakes will eliminate those mistakes. Coaches find that players who are afraid of making mistakes will work harder not to make mistakes. Successful coaches who used punishment tended to also be masters of strategy and teaching. Those things, not the negative focus, were the attributes that made them successful. Punishment is not recommended as a primary source of motivation, but may occasionally be necessary to eliminate unwanted behavior. There should be some guidelines to maximize the effectiveness of the punishment. Some of them must be consistent, giving everyone the same type of punishment for breaking the same rules. The behavior should be punished, not the person. Athletes must cooperate in determining penalties for infractions of the rules. Physical activity or conditioning should not be used as a punishment. Punishment should not be taken as a reward. The sanctions must be impersonal, so there is no need to shout. People shouldn't feel embarrassed in front of their teammates. Punishment should also be used sparingly. The punishment should also be age appropriate. Athletes need to understand the reason for the punishment. Trainers need to be aware that there are cultural differences between people and should take this into account when administering punishment.

Behavior change

Behavior modification is the application of the principles of negative and positive reinforcement to create desirable behaviors and eliminate undesirable behaviors. Behavioral techniques are used in sports to help people stay motivated and task oriented during training. Studies have shown that changing behavior positively changed the frequency of practice, reduced errors, and improved performance. He also developed a healthier attitude toward good sportsmanship. Behavior modification has been shown to be effective in many sports.

Behavior modification programs have certain characteristics. To be successful, they must emphasize specific and frequent performance measurement and use it to assess program effectiveness. These programs also encourage participants to improve on their own previous level of performance. They also recognize the difference between maintaining existing behavior and developing a new behavior. They also emphasize that the trainer should systematically monitor behavior and be encouraged to seek feedback from participants on the effectiveness of various aspects of the intervention. Behavior modification can also be combined with cognitive behavioral therapy. This can result in an even greater increase in performance.

Extrinsic rewards and intrinsic motivation

The sports world uses many extrinsic rewards. Many leagues host postseason banquets where athletes receive medals, ribbons, money, and jackets. Teachers often hand out stickers to reward their students for good behavior. Proponents of extrinsic rewards argue that rewards increase motivation and the desire to continue to participate. Rewards can evoke desired behavior changes in sport and exercise. However, if the rewards are used incorrectly, negative consequences can also occur. People play sports not only for extrinsic rewards, but also for intrinsic motivation. Intrinsically motivated people internally strive to master a task with competence and self-determination. These people like competition, they like excitement, they want to learn their skills to the best of their ability, and they focus on having fun. Studies have found that many high-level athletes are motivated primarily by personal goals and achievements rather than financial incentives.

There are social and psychological factors that can influence extrinsic and intrinsic motivation. Some of the social factors are failure and success, the behavior of the coaches and the focus of the competition. According to self-determination theory, competence, autonomy, and connectedness are the three basic human needs, the satisfaction of which largely determines a person's intrinsic motivation. The psychological factors that influence motivation are the need for competence, the need for connection, and the need for autonomy. People often think that combining extrinsic and intrinsic motivation would create more motivation. They do not expect extrinsic rewards to decrease intrinsic motivation. Early researchers viewed extrinsic rewards and intrinsic motivation as addictive. However, some have noted that extrinsic rewards can undermine intrinsic motivation. Some have said that the more extrinsically motivated a person is, the less intrinsically motivated they will be. In the late 1960s, researchers began to study the relationship between intrinsic motivation and extrinsic reward. In the 1970s, a study found that participants who were rewarded with money for participating in an interesting activity spent less time doing it afterward than those who were not paid. Not all studies have shown that extrinsic rewards decrease intrinsic motivation. Many scientists have concluded that, under certain conditions, extrinsic rewards can reduce intrinsic motivation. However, we are still not sure what the conditions are.

Cognitive Appraisal Theory

The Cognitive Evaluation Theory (CET) developed by Deci is a subtheory of the Theory of Self-Determination (TSD). As mentioned above, SDT focuses on three psychological needs: connection, autonomy, and impact. Deci argues that people are motivated by a sense of connectedness with others (kinship), a sense of personal initiative (autonomy), and a sense of effective functioning in their environment (efficacy). SDT focuses on intrinsic motivation but does not say what causes intrinsic motivation. The CET was developed to account for variability in intrinsic motivation. This theory focuses on the factors that promote and hinder the development of intrinsic motivation. There are two functional components: a control aspect and an information aspect. Both can decrease or increase intrinsic motivation by undermining self-determination and competence.

The controlling aspect of rewards is linked to a person's perceived locus of causation. This is what causes a person's behavior. When a reward is considered to control behavior, people believe that the cause of their behavior, in this case an external location, is outside of themselves and intrinsic motivation is reduced. There is often a conflict between controlling another person's reward and one's own need for determination. Coaches use certain prominent strategies to control the behavior of athletes. It undermines your intrinsic motivation. These strategies are tangible rewards, controlling feedback (capture all the negative aspects of an athlete's behavior but say nothing about the positive behavior), excessive personal control (the coach is too bossy), intimidating (threatening) behavior, boosting the ego of participation and conditional consideration. (the coach says something to make the athlete feel guilty).

The information aspect affects intrinsic motivation. It does this by changing how competent a person feels. When someone receives a performance bonus, they receive positive feedback about the competition and this should increase intrinsic motivation. Negative information about competition should decrease perceived competition and intrinsic motivation. There is a third element in training which is the functional importance of the event. Each prize has aspects of control and information. How the reward affects intrinsic motivation depends on whether the recipient finds it more informative or more controlling. Athletes need to know that a reward provides positive information about their competition and that the reward is not intended to control their behavior.

Extrinsic rewards influence intrinsic motivation in sport

Today, certain athletes get contracts worth millions. The point is that, after an agreement of this type, athletes will lose motivation and the desire to play at the highest level. Studies have shown that scholarship soccer players like the sport less than non-scholarship players. In addition, the scholarship players showed lower intrinsic motivation each year they received the scholarship. Later studies showed that male wrestlers and female athletes in six different sports who had scholarships reported higher levels of intrinsic motivation than those who did not have scholarships. The results seem strange, but they can be explained by the difference between the information and control aspects of rewards. The bags can have an informational function and that means they can tell athletes that they are good. This would be particularly illuminating for women and wrestlers, who receive fewer scholarships than other athletes.

Scholarships can be used in many ways. Coaches can use concessions as leverage to control player behavior. As a result, the general conditions related to sports may change for scholarship holders. In this way, the coaches turned what was a game into work. Today, women receive more grants than ever before, and recent studies have shown that for women, the informational aspect of grants is reduced and the pressure to win has increased the control aspect of grants. This reduced intrinsic motivation. Some studies have shown that it is not the bag that shows these results, but the behavior of the coach. The changes in intrinsic motivation were mainly due to the behavior of the coach rather than the fact that the athlete had a scholarship. Democratic coaching behavior led to a higher level of intrinsic motivation and autocratic coaching behavior to a lower level of intrinsic motivation.

Studies have also shown that people have higher intrinsic motivation after success than after failure. These studies also showed that focusing on performance goals helped maintain motivation more than focusing on results. Sometimes an athlete plays well but still loses to an opponent and sometimes an athlete doesn't play well but still manages to win. Subjective results also determine an athlete's intrinsic motivation. People who feel they have performed well have higher intrinsic motivation than people who have a lower perception of success. When determining intrinsic motivation, people's subjective perception of their performance is more important than actual victory or defeat. It seems that focusing on a person's performance is more important than the actual result.

In one study, the number of positive comments made by coaches versus athletes was different. The results showed that the groups that received feedback performed better on perceived competence and intrinsic motivation than the group that did not receive feedback. There was no difference between the different feedback groups. The absolute amount of positive feedback seems to matter less than the presence of any kind of positive feedback. Studies have found a variety of factors associated with intrinsic motivation. They found that higher levels of intrinsic motivation were associated with playing in a recreational versus competitive league, high levels of perceived control, playing for a freelance coach, and high levels of competition.

Increase intrinsic motivation

Coaches often structure rewards and other strategies to increase perceptions of success and therefore intrinsic motivation. Intrinsic motivation can be increased in the following ways:

  • Convey a sense of accomplishment: Perceived success often strengthens feelings of personal competence.

  • Performance related rewards should be given, this can increase the informational value. Rewards should be given based on the correct execution of skills.

  • Verbal and non-verbal praise.

  • The course and content of the exercises should be varied.

  • Realistic performance goals should be set

  • Participants must participate in decision making.


Some researchers have examined the factors that make a task intrinsically motivating. They found identified flow elements in a variety of power configurations. One of the elements of flow is the balance between challenge and skill. An athlete must believe that he has the ability to successfully overcome physical and mental challenges. Another element is total inclusion in the activity. Clear objectives are also one of the elements. An athlete must also merge action and awareness. Another element is total concentration on the task at hand. Losing trust is also a flow element. Sometimes athletes are so engrossed in their task that they seem to merge with it. A sense of control is just as important to flow as it is to effortless movement. There should also be no goals or rewards outside of the activity. The last element of the flow is the transformation of time. Athletes on the go often say that time seems to speed up. All of these are elements that represent the essential characteristics of optimum performance. The holistic feeling that these elements evoke is called flow. In the flow, people believe that they are fully invested in the task. The smooth experience arises when the skills match the challenge.

Of course, coaches want their athletes to get into a state of flow. Researchers have found ways for someone to achieve flow. These include achievement motivation, achieving optimal arousal levels prior to performance, optimal physical preparation, self-confidence, maintaining proper focus, feeling good about achievement, team play, pre-competition plans, and ideal environmental and situational conditions. . Most athletes think that the flow is manageable. However, studies show that athletes cannot control blood flow, but they can increase the likelihood of blood flow occurring. Athletes often cite that the most impeding elements of flow are sub-optimal physical, environmental and situational conditions and preparation. The flow is usually positive, but can sometimes turn negative. Some athletes have reported becoming so addicted to the flow that, despite injuries, family commitments, and possible death, they tried to replicate the sensations of the flow. Some could not function normally in society. Fortunately, flow is a positive state in most cases.

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Chapter 7 - Group and team dynamics

Group success depends on teamwork, group dynamics, and player-coach interactions. Many researchers are studying the positive aspects of group formation. However, there are also negative aspects of being part of a group. Some of the negative consequences of teams are social laziness, conformity, self-deception, deindividuation (losing one's own identity), and groupthink. Groups have many positive functions, but people should not forget the negative ones. The difference between a group and a team can be very complex. A group is two or more people who interact and influence each other. The sense of interacting with one another in a structured way distinguishes a group from a collection of individuals. Teams also have mutual interactions and task dependencies. Teams also have four key characteristics: a collective sense of identity, distinct roles, structured forms of communication, and norms.

Three theories of group development

A group of people does not necessarily make a team. All teams are groups, but not all groups are teams. A team is a group of people who need to interact with each other to achieve common goals. Teams often evolve and change in their attempts to respond to external and internal factors. Researchers studying team building have developed several theories. Theories fall into three categories: linear theory (groups evolve gradually or linearly), cyclical theory (groups follow a cyclical pattern), and pendulum theory (groups evolve in a pendulum fashion).

straight line perspective

In this perspective, it is assumed that groups gradually go through different stages. Critical issues arise at each stage, and when the issues are successfully resolved, the group moves on. Tuckman proposed that groups go through four stages: formation, assault, normalization, and performance. Most groups go through all four phases, but the length of each phase and the order they follow can vary from group to group in the team development process. In the training phase, team members get acquainted with other team members. Team members make social comparisons. In the storm phase, members resist the leader, there is resistance to group control, and there is interpersonal conflict. Battles can take place individually and the leader determines her role and status in the group. Managers must communicate openly with participants. In the normalization phase, hostility is replaced by solidarity and cooperation. A feeling of togetherness develops. Team members work together to achieve common goals. In the execution phase, team members come together and focus on problem solving. The roles are well defined at this stage.

cyclic perspective

This model assumes that groups evolve in a similar way to the human life cycle: birth, growth and death. Life cycle models differ from linear models by emphasizing the final phase before group dissolution. A key element of this approach is the assumption that as a group develops, it also psychologically prepares itself for its own dissolution.

pendulum perspective

This model emphasizes the changes that occur in interpersonal relationships during the development and growth of groups. This perspective assumes that a group does not move linearly through the stages from the moment it is formed.

group structure

Cada grupo desarrolla su propia estructura. Este desarrollo a menudo comienza en la primera reunión del grupo. La estructura del grupo depende de las interacciones de sus miembros. Las características estructurales deben desarrollarse antes de que un grupo de individuos pueda convertirse en un equipo eficaz. Las características más importantes son los roles del grupo y las normas del grupo.


A role is a set of expected behaviors of the person who occupies a certain role in a group. There are two types of roles in any group or team. These are formal roles and informal roles. Formal roles are dictated by the nature of the organization. In a sports setting, coaches and team captains are examples of specific formal roles. All formal positions have specific performance roles within a team. Each role has specific expectations associated with it. People are usually trained or recruited to fill specific roles. Informal roles develop from interactions among group members. The researchers identified 12 informal roles: Spark (inspires a group towards a goal), Comedian, Cancer (someone who expresses negative emotions that spread destructively throughout the team), Enforcer, Distractor, Team Player, Informal Verbal, and Informal Nonverbal Leader. , Mentor, Social Convocator (someone involved in planning social gatherings for a team), Star, and Simulator (someone who prolongs symptoms of psychological damage for some sort of external gain. Obviously, the distraction, simulation, and cancer roles have a detrimental effect on equipment function.

Team effectiveness can be improved by making sure players understand and accept their roles (role clarity). Studies have found that athletes with role ambiguity were more critical of their coach's ability to lead the team during competition. Studies have also shown that understanding your own Oles is critical to being effective in this role. Role clarity mediates the relationship between role ambiguity and athlete satisfaction. Only when a person has a high need for role clarity does the ambiguity lead to reduced satisfaction. Individuals in a given role often have a different perspective on the requirements of the role than other members of the group. Unclear roles can hurt a team's performance. People's accomplishments can also confuse their roles on a team. A goal setting program can clarify roles. Players gain direction and focus as they set goals.

Coil acceptance is generally related to coil performance. However, this is not always the case. Athletes can take on a role even when assigned responsibilities exceed their capacity. This can result in lower performance. It is important for coaches to be able to determine if athletes are not accepting the responsibilities of their role or if athletes are being asked to perform the responsibilities of their role at a level beyond their ability. Coaches can help athletes accept their roles by minimizing status differences between roles, and they should also emphasize that the success of the team depends on each individual. There are four conditions on which role acceptance depends: opportunity to use specialized skills, role feedback and recognition, role autonomy, and role meaning.

Role conflict occurs when the person playing the role does not have enough motivation, skill, time, or understanding to achieve the goal, despite a consensus about the goal or desired outcome. A typical form of role conflict is when different people expect different things from you.

The norm of the group.

A norm is a level of achievement or belief. Standards can be formally defined or developed informally by a group. People are often pressured to conform to group norms. This is true even if the pattern is considered irrelevant. On a sports team, the norm can include dress code, practice behavior, and interaction between new and old teammates. Deviations from these standards may result in formal or informal sanctions. The standard of effort and performance accepted by a team is called the standard of productivity. Typically, the captain of a team is the role model who sets the standards for productivity. Trainers can also create productivity standards. Norms can have a powerful impact on behavior and therefore it is important for a coach to establish positive group norms. This can be accomplished by encouraging both formal and informal team leaders to set positive examples. Coaches often need to encourage leaders to set high performance standards. It is better to involve all team members in making policy decisions. Sometimes it is necessary to change the rules of the team, in which case two main aspects must be considered: the nature of the communication and the source of the communication to change the rules. Group members who are more persuasive are more popular, more trusted, have higher status, and are attractive. The language style is also important. Research shows that speaking quickly and asking rhetorical questions increases the effectiveness of persuasive arguments. Changing group norms is most effective when people are present on both sides of the discussion, when the communication is new, when there are multiple communications, and when the conclusions are made explicit.


The way in which the players perceive the relationships between the members of the group develops the team climate. The perception and evaluation of the players determines the state of mind of the team. The coach has the last word in creating the team climate. Some factors are easier to change than others. Social support is the exchange of resources between two or more people in a team with the goal of increasing the well-being of the recipient. Studies have shown that social support has a positive impact on various feelings and behaviors, including burnout, stress management, and recovery from injury. Social support is also associated with increases in team cohesion and climate. Studies have also shown that people are more likely to bond when they're around each other. Physical proximity alone usually doesn't build team spirit, but close contact with other players promotes interaction and can speed up group development. Some coaches try to foster team cohesion by allowing athletes to live together in dormitories. Teams often do different things to feel closer. All these interactions and a similar mindset can help establish the identity of the team.

The sense of unity increases when a group feels separated. Gangs distinguish themselves from other gangs by dressing in conspicuous clothing. In sports, distinction is achieved through team uniforms, mottos, and rites of passage. Coaches help team members develop a team concept, making team members feel different from other teams. Trust is important for the team climate. At the center of trust is the athlete's perception that he is being treated fairly. Athletes must feel that their performance is being evaluated in an objective and balanced way. Coaches must treat their athletes fairly, because fairness affects athlete engagement, satisfaction, and motivation. Athletes look at three different aspects when interpreting fairness. They observe whether the coach tries to help them be happy and improve, and how the coach communicates his views to the athletes, and they observe the compatibility between the coach's evaluation and their own evaluation of her abilities and contributions. Justice can unite a team or tear it apart. Coaches must treat people fairly and athletes must believe they are being treated fairly.

Similarities between team members can develop a positive team climate. These similarities may be in attitudes, goals, commitments, and aspirations. Team members often differ in personality, socioeconomic background, and ethnicity. Studies have shown that socioeconomic background and playing experience do not play a role in building a team concept. The trainer has to bring together different people in a team and therefore also develop an alignment of attitudes between them. The more athletes on a team are aware of what they have in common, the more likely they are to develop a strong team concept. Another way to improve team climate is to make results interdependent. Results interdependence refers to the fact that all group members benefit from the group's performance. Interdependence is a way of managing conflict within a team. One way to encourage task interdependence is to provide team-level assessments to reinforce a shared destiny among teammates. This increases the sense of interdependence as all team members are responsible for one another. It is important for coaches to know how the athletes on the team feel. One way to find out is by giving them the team climate quiz. The answers to these questions provide the technician with information about the team's climate. Coaches should regularly monitor team weather changes throughout the season. Obviously, anonymity is better so athletes can answer more honestly.

maximize performance

Coaches are responsible for many things. One of the most important things in team sports is that coaches need players to work together as a team. Coaches also need to understand how these interactions affect performance on the field. As mentioned above, a group of the best individuals does not always make the best team. A team is not just the sum of its parts and how well a team works together is a key factor. Steiner developed a model to show the relationship between individual skills in a team and the interaction of team members. Steiner's productivity model is as follows:

Actual productivity = Potential productivity - Losses attributed to faulty group processes

Potential productivity is the best possible performance of a team. The skills, knowledge, abilities and task requirements of all players are considered. Steiner believes that individual ability is the most important resource for sports teams and, as such, believes that the team made up of the best individuals will typically achieve the greatest success. This model implies that the actual productivity of a team does not always match its potential productivity. A team must use available resources effectively to meet the demands of the task. The actual performance of a group often falls short of its potential productivity due to faulty group processes. According to Steiner, a team will perform better than another team if the first team has more abilities than the second team with the same proc losses, if the first team has more abilities and less proc losses than the second team, and if the The first team The team has the same Abilities as the second team, but has fewer losses from faulty group processes. This suggests that trainers should increase relevant resources and reduce process losses. There are two types of losses that result from faulty group processes: loss of coordination and loss of motivation. Loss of motivation occurs when athletes do not give 100% effort. Loss of coordination occurs when the timing is not correct between team members or when team members use ineffective strategies. Loss of coordination is most common in sports that require complex interactions and collaboration, such as basketball and soccer. Basketball and soccer coaches spend a lot of time honing coordination. There are several terms that differentiate between tasks that require coordination among team members and those that do not. Task work knowledge is the knowledge required to perform a task and teamwork knowledge is the knowledge required when coordination is required to perform a task.

Studies have found that the ability to anticipate the moves of others (among teammates) and one's own actions is at least as important as the quality of one's own performance. Individual abilities appear to be only moderately good predictors of group performance. Studies have also shown that in sports where more cooperation and interaction are required, the importance of individual skills decreases and the importance of the group process increases. Two-person teams work best together when they have similar skills. The closer these two abilities are, the more likely you are to get the most out of their combo abilities. Teams are usually only as good as their weakest player.

Individual skills do not add to group performance. The question is what is causing the losses and how much potential productivity is lost. The Ringelmann effect tried to explain this. Ringelmann visualized a pull-rope task, observing individuals and groups of two, three, and eight people pulling on a rope. He found that the relative performance of each individual decreased progressively as the number of people in the group increased. People do not reach 100% of their individual potential when working in groups. However, the methodology of Ringelmann's study was incomplete, and other researchers have tried to replicate the results. The results were similar, but they found that increasing group size did not result in decreased efficiency. There was a general flattening. The researchers also concluded that the differences between actual and potential performance are due, in part, to loss of motivation and, to a lesser extent, to loss of coordination.


Social laziness means that the individual on a team is performing less than 100% due to a lack of motivation. There are many conditions that encourage social loafing. Social loitering occurs most often when the contributions of individual group members are not identified. If individual contributions to group output were controlled directly, social loafing would be reduced. Even if people perceive their contributions to be essential to group productivity, social loitering must be reduced. Studies have shown that social loitering occurs in a variety of tasks and in many populations and cultures. Social loafing is also increased when a task is perceived to have little meaning, when a person's personal involvement in the task is low, when a person feels that their contribution to the outcome is redundant, when the people contributing to the collective effort are outsiders. compared to group standards are not possible and the individual believes that he is facing a weaker opponent. The belief that social loitering occurs is called perceived social loitering. Studies show that perceived social loafing causes social loafing. When team members think social absenteeism is taking place, they may also feel they need to try harder. Social support among teammates can build trust and this can help reduce the perception of social loitering. A coach should also emphasize team spirit and stress the importance of unique contributions. Athletes must take responsibility for their own efforts. Studies have shown that social loafing decreased as individual performance identifiability increased. Coaches can videotape or use observation checklists in team sports to increase identification. This is likely to reduce social loitering. Through observations, trainers can also identify which situations are causing laziness and try to reduce them. Coaches should also discuss truancy with each player individually. Players may have other reasons for losing motivation. Some coaches may even reassign players to show appreciation for their teammates and how their own performance affects others on the team. A team can also be divided into smaller units. This increases recognition of responsibility towards others and helps develop a cohesive unit. Greater feelings of cohesion in the group lead to greater effort and commitment. Studies have shown that teams generally tend to be socially lazy when they fail, viewing that failure as a lack of skill. The researchers recommend that teams attribute failure to internal, unstable, and controllable factors, since these factors can be modified. In this way, the teams will try to give everything and not stand still.

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Chapter 8 - Group Cohesion

As a team, being a cohesive unit is often linked to success. However, this is not always the case. Some teams win despite a lack of cohesion. Some researchers in the 1950s believed that there were two distinct types of forces acting on group members: group attractiveness and control of resources. The first relates to the person's desire to have interpersonal interactions with other members of the group and the desire to contribute to the group. The second refers to the benefits that a person can obtain by belonging to the group. Cohesion can be seen as a dynamic process and the tendency of a group to come together in pursuit of instrumental goals. Cohesion is multidimensional because there are many factors that hold a group together, and it is dynamic because the cohesion in a group can change. Cohesion is also instrumental (the group has a purpose) and affective. Task cohesion is the degree to which members of a group work together to achieve group goals. Social cohesion is the degree to which team members like each other. Studies show that adherence to an exercise program increases as the group becomes more socially cohesive. Distinguishing between these two forms of cohesion helps explain how teams can overcome conflict to thrive. Sometimes teams have low social cohesion but high task cohesion, and the latter form of cohesion can help them win a championship despite low social cohesion.

Cohesion conceptual model

Carron developed a conceptual model of cohesion. According to Carron, there are four main factors that influence the development of cohesion in the sports environment: personal, team, environmental and management factors. Environmental factors are the most common factors. These are normative forces that hold a group together. These factors are present when players have scholarships, geographic restrictions, when players have management contracts, or when family members have expectations of athletes. These examples can hold a group together. Age, proximity, and eligibility requirements also play an important role in keeping groups together. Group development can be fostered when individuals are close to each other. Group size also plays a role. Smaller groups are more cohesive than larger groups.

Personal factors are the characteristics of the individuals on a team. Personal factors are very different. Personal factors are grouped into three categories: cognitions and motives (eg, responsibility, fear), demographics (eg, gender), and behavior (eg, social loafing). Studies have shown that the most important personal factor related to the development of social and work cohesion in sports teams is individual satisfaction.

Leadership factors are the leadership styles and behaviors that athletes exhibit and the relationships they form with their groups. The role of the leader is very important for team cohesion. Constant and clear communication from coaches and captains about tasks, goals, and roles influences team spirit. Realizing the compatibility between the leader and the group members can increase the feeling of togetherness. Coaching behaviors such as ridicule, shame, and unfairness can reduce the sense of togetherness.

Team factors are group task characteristics, group desire for success, team stability, group productivity norms, group position, and group roles. Studies show that teams that stick together for a long time and have a strong desire for group success exhibit high group cohesion. Common experiences are also important to develop and maintain cohesion. This is because they put together a team. Collective efficacy is also positively related to perceptions of team cohesion.

measure cohesion

It is necessary to measure cohesion to determine the relationship between cohesion and performance. Two types of measures were developed: sociograms and questionnaires. The first research on cohesion used the Sports Cohesion Questionnaire. This questionnaire has several items that measure interpersonal or group attractiveness. However, this questionnaire does not contain any measure of validity or reliability. Other instruments were also developed. The Multidimensional Sport Cohesion Instrument covers four main dimensions of team cohesion: unity, group attractiveness, valuable roles and quality of teamwork. Group attraction reflects social cohesion, and the other three factors are related to task cohesion. The Group Environment Questionnaire (GEQ) distinguishes between individuals and groups, and between tasks and social concerns. This questionnaire has been used in various studies on group cohesion in the sports environment. This questionnaire showed that the level of cohesion was related to team performance, member satisfaction and team communication. The model on which the development of the GEQ was based has two main categories: a member's personal attraction to the group, and a member's perception of the group as a whole. Beliefs and perceptions work together to create a member's and a group's sense of belonging. The group as a whole and the individuals in the group have social and task aspects.

Quizzes are the most popular way to measure group cohesion. However, the questionnaires do not show how individuals relate to each other or whether some members of the group are socially isolated. Social cohesion can be measured with a sociogram. Reveals belonging and attraction between group members. Using a sociogram, researchers can find the presence or absence of cliques, team friendship decisions, social isolation of individual group members, and group attraction. First you need to generate information for the sociogram. Individual members of the group should be specifically asked. Based on the answers to the questions, a sociogram is created. This reveals patterns of interpersonal relationships in a group. The most selected people are located in the center of the sociogram and the least selected are on the outside. To see a picture of a sociogram, look inside the book. The arrows on the sociogram indicate the direction of choice. Mutual choice is represented by arrows going in both directions between two people. A coach needs to know about these connections because they can help you deal with interpersonal problems.

cohesion and performance

Coaches and sports psychologists are fascinated by how team cohesion relates to successful performance. It is often assumed that the greater the team cohesion, the greater the success of a team. Many studies have found this to be the case. Some studies have shown that higher levels of cohesion lead to higher levels of effort and this increases performance. However, there are studies that show a negative relationship between cohesion and performance. These inconsistencies can be understood by looking at the measure of cohesion and task properties.

There has been some controversy about the impact of homework and social cohesion on performance. Some researchers found that increases in task and social cohesion were associated with increases in performance, while others found that task cohesion was more important than social cohesion. It seems that both social cohesion and task measures can strengthen cohesion and improve performance. Examples of social mentoring techniques are team meetings and bootcamps. Task-oriented interventions are goal setting and team communication. Researchers must also consider task structure and requirements when evaluating the relationship between cohesion and performance. The nature of interactions between teammates can be characterized along a continuum from interactive to coercive. Interactive sports are sports in which team members must work together and coordinate their actions. Cooperative sports do not require a lot of team interaction and coordination to achieve the goal. An example of the latter is a bowling team. Studies show that greater cohesion is associated with better performance in interactive and collaborative sports. The absolute level of cohesion is higher in interactive sports than in coercive sports. This seems logical since interactive sports involve more interactions between team members. Therefore, interactive sports coaches will adopt many of the team building strategies associated with greater cohesion. In coercive sports, there are fewer natural opportunities to develop group cohesion. Therefore, team building interventions in this context may have a greater impact on both cohesion and team performance.

One thing to think about is the direction of causality. What is meant by this is whether cohesion leads to success in achievement or whether success in achievement leads to cohesion. There are researchers who have studied whether cohesion leads to performance and there are researchers who have studied whether performance leads to cohesion. Some have found that the effect of achievement on cohesion is stronger than the effect of cohesion on achievement. Recent research has analyzed team sports and found no differences between performance-cohesion and cohesion-performance relationships. It seems that the relationship between cohesion and performance is circular. Performance appears to affect subsequent cohesion, and changes in cohesion affect subsequent performance. The relationship between cohesion and performance is complex. The authors of this book believe that greater cohesion leads to better performance, and better performance brings teams together and leads to greater cohesion. This is a circular relationship. They find that the effect of performance on cohesion is stronger than cohesion on team performance in general (not sports teams).

Factors associated with cohesion

Most researchers have focused on the relationship between performance and cohesion, but there are other factors associated with cohesion as well. One of these factors is team satisfaction. Happiness and cohesion are somewhat similar, but cohesion affects groups and happiness is an individual construct. Studies have found strong associations between cohesion and happiness. Some academics think that there is a circular relationship in which team cohesion leads to achievement success, which generates feelings of satisfaction and this strengthens and solidifies team cohesion. Other scholars suggest that there is a circular relationship in which achievement success leads to greater cohesion, which in turn leads to greater happiness. Regardless of whether the first or second suggestion is true, trainers would do well to develop group cohesion, as being in a cohesive group is satisfying and improves performance.

Another factor associated with cohesion is conformity. Research has shown that the more cohesive the group, the more influence the group has over its individual members. Members of highly cohesive groups may feel pressured by dress habits, dress styles, and gaming behavior. Highly cohesive groups show greater agreement with the group norm of productivity than less cohesive groups. Another factor analyzed is adherence. Studies have found that the more cohesive a person is, the more likely they are to attend classes, the more likely they are to be on time, the more likely they are to drop out of school, and the more likely that person is to experience positive effects. .

Another factor examined is the social support an individual receives. Social support generally means emotional support. Trainers need to understand the importance of social support and need to figure out how and when to use social support to improve group cohesion. Stability is also a factor related to cohesion. Stability refers to how long group members have been together and the turnover rate of group members. Teams that remain relatively consistent over a period of time will be more stable, cohesive, and successful. Some researchers have suggested that there is a circular relationship between stability and team cohesion. They find that the longer a team has been together, the more likely cohesion is to develop, and the more cohesive a team becomes, the less likely a team member is to leave the team. Studies have shown that teams with few roster changes were more successful than those with constant roster changes. Studies have also shown that more cohesive groups exhibit greater resistance to disruption than less cohesive teams. It is necessary to establish positive norms of group productivity so that people work together as a unit. Group goals are generally set for the group as a whole. Group goals are the shared perception of a desirable state for the group as a unit. Studies have shown that people who perceive their team as participating in group goal setting have higher levels of cohesion. Higher satisfaction with team goals is also associated with high team cohesion.

strengthen cohesion

Many researchers have begun to focus on interventions to improve cohesion in sports groups. The research found that people with higher levels of cohesion attended exercise classes more regularly and on time than those with lower levels of cohesion. Strategies to improve group cohesion in exercise groups are:

  • Distinction: having a group name, having a group jersey, having a group slogan

  • Individual positions: Making signs to identify parts of the group

  • Group Norms: Set a Weight Loss Goal Together

  • Individual Victims: Ask Regulars to Help New People

  • Interaction and communication: work in small groups and take turns demonstrating a movement

With a team building program, even large groups can stay together. In sports, there are certain principles that underlie the team building program. These principles look at team structure (role clarity, leadership, and adherence to standards), team environment (distinction and togetherness), and team processes (goals, sacrifice, and collaboration). Communication is also important. Coaches must remember that cohesion changes over time.

Team building is a common technique in sports and business today. Typically, this involves identifying team goals and a team mission. Before identifying team goals, team values ​​must be developed. Team values ​​may include morality, honesty, teamwork, communication, fairness, and cooperation. When a person knows that other team members share common values, they will act in accordance with those values. Athletes must contribute to the development of team goals. Athletes should list their Tam stats and then discuss why they think each stat is important to the team. Next, the team needs to discuss how the values ​​support the team's goals. The five to seven most important values ​​should be selected by group consensus. Then the values ​​of the team must be prioritized. Low priority values ​​should be excluded.

build team cohesion

Cohesion generally improves group performance. At the very least, create a positive environment that encourages positive interactions among group members. Sports psychologists provided guidelines for developing group cohesion. When communication is effective, trainers can promote group cohesion in a number of ways. A team leader must create an environment where each member can express her thoughts and feelings. Leaders must also ensure that each member participates in and is committed to the goals of the group. This will improve interpersonal relationships. As communication increases, cohesion develops. Team leaders should also explain individual roles to team members and emphasize the importance of each member's role to the success of the team. If there are subunits, coaches should foster pride within those groups. Goals set high standards for productivity and keep teams focused on what needs to be accomplished. Therefore, teams must set concrete and challenging goals. When team members achieve goals, they should be proud of it and strive to achieve new goals. Coaches should also promote group identity. Team leaders should also try to avoid forming social groups. Social cliques are different from subunits. Social cliques benefit few athletes at the expense of alienating most team members. Excessive rotation reduces cohesion and rotation should be avoided. Coaches must also hold team meetings throughout the season. In these meetings, all members can express positive and negative feelings, conflicts can be resolved and resources mobilized. It is necessary to increase the effectiveness of the team. The effectiveness of the team can positively influence the development of cohesion. There must be a good team atmosphere and there must be communication between the players and the coaching staff so that the athletes can express opinions, ideas and feelings about the team. Coaches need to be more aware of individual characteristics and improve personal disclosure. Team members need to understand the roles, needs, motivations, and viewpoints of other team members. This strengthens trust and cohesion. Group members need to know other team members, need to help other team members, need to give positive affirmation to other team members, need to take responsibility, need to communicate honestly with the group leader. Conflicts must be resolved immediately and all members must give 100% effort at all times.

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Chapter 9 - Leadership

It is not always visible to the public, but great leaders in physical education and fitness also emerge. These leaders often increase the efficiency of everyone involved. Leadership can be seen as a process in which one person influences a group of people to achieve a common goal. This influence usually involves promoting motivation in others, and the leader seeks to get others to work together toward a common goal. Modern leaders create a vision for the group, motivate others to join them in pursuit of that mission, instill confidence in their followers, and get results. Today a better understanding of leadership as a complex social process is valued. It does this by examining the interaction between leader and followers and the context in which leadership takes place. In sports, leadership dimensions also include motivating participants, building interpersonal relationships, leading the group, making decisions, and providing feedback. Leaders guide the group. Managers give each participant the maximum chance of success. There is a difference between managers and leaders. Managers deal with organization, planning, scheduling, and recruiting. Executives often fill these roles as well, but executives act in other critical ways. Leaders provide insight that helps determine the direction the team is taking. They respond to resources and help get the job done. There are plenty of coaches who become great managers, but that's different than providing the leadership needed to grow teams.

There are several methods for selecting executives. Required leaders are leaders appointed by an authority figure. An example of this is the school principal who selects the teachers. Sometimes group leaders emerge and take the initiative. These executives are called emerging leaders. Often, emerging leaders are more effective than appointed leaders. That's because they have the support and respect of the team. These leaders have special leadership qualities, high sports performance and a lot of experience. Leaders generally have two roles: ensuring that the needs of group members are met and ensuring that the needs of the organization within the group are met. Studies have attempted to identify leadership qualities in the hope of predicting who is likely to become a leader. Researchers also examine whether there are factors in a situation that lead to effective leadership.

study leadership

Research took different types of approaches to study leadership. One approach is the trait approach and focuses on the consistency of individuals, the behavioral approach focuses on behaviors, and the third approach holds that leadership depends on the characteristics of the situation. The three approaches were combined from the perspective of interaction. This is the dominant perspective for the study of leadership today.

fast focus

In the early days of the study of leadership, researchers tried to identify what personality traits were common to great leaders in business and industry. These researchers viewed leadership traits as relatively stable personality dispositions, such as independence, confidence, and intelligence. Proponents of this theory argue that successful leaders have certain personality traits that make them likely to be leaders no matter what situation they find themselves in. The trait approach fell out of favor after many studies of leadership trait theory were reviewed and found few consistent personality traits. Some qualities may be helpful to a leader, but are not essential for successful leadership. Not many common leadership traits have been found among coaches, athletes, and coaches, so the trait approach to leadership in sports is not commonly used today. Recent research shows that enduring qualities are important in determining leader effectiveness, but they are not universal and need to be analyzed as well.

behavioral approach

This approach argued that anyone can become a leader simply by learning the behaviors of other effective leaders. The trait theory assumes that leaders are born, but the behavioral approach holds that leaders are made. Studies have found that most of what leaders do falls into two categories: initial structure and deliberation. Consideration is mutual trust, warmth, friendship, and respect between leader and subordinates. The starting framework is the establishment of rules, communication patterns and organization to achieve goals and objectives. They are compatible and different categories. According to studies, successful leaders tend to perform well in both the initiation and deliberative settings. Leadership behavior can be studied using the event recording technique. The researchers list various training behaviors and record when and how often these behaviors occur. Many studies using this technique have found that leaders tend to provide guidance, scold failures, and praise good performance. Studies using different approaches have also found that coaches rely on positive and supportive feedback. From a behavioral perspective, the key to effective leadership is to focus on the positive and provide clear feedback and direction.

situational approach

This approach argues that leadership qualities are not as important as thinking. This approach also argues that effective leadership depends more on the characteristics of the situation than on the characteristics and behaviors of the leaders in the situations. There are few contemporary leadership researchers who support the situational approach. However, this approach made it easier to understand leadership because it showed that situational characteristics have a large impact on leadership success. It is a mistake when people do not recognize situational influences on leadership.

interactive approach

There are many researchers in the industry who have proposed interactive leadership models. Many researchers today are concerned with concepts that are capable of coping with different situations and with different leaders. Studies have shown that leaders cannot be predicted based solely on their personality traits. Some traits interact with situational factors in complex ways. Studies have also found that effective leadership styles are tailored to the situation and the athletes involved. Different athletes expect different leadership styles from their coaches. It is also important to recognize that leadership styles can change when a leader wants to meet the demands of the situation. Relationship-oriented leaders develop interpersonal relationships, communicate openly, put everyone at ease, and promote positive social interactions. Task-oriented leaders work to get the job done and achieve their goals. People can switch between these styles. According to Fiedler's contingency leadership model, task-oriented leaders are most effective in highly favorable or highly unfavorable situations, and relationship-oriented leaders are most effective in moderately favorable situations. Highly skilled players are competition oriented and a coach who has a more relational style seems to be more effective with these players. Less experienced players need more instruction and feedback and therefore a task oriented coach would be more suitable for them. Of course, less qualified people also need a caring and understanding coach. Trainers must assess the situation to determine what behavior or style might be effective.

Sport-oriented interaction approaches

It is important to consider both environmental and human factors when developing leadership models. There are two sport-specific interactive approaches that provide guidance for the study of leadership in sport.

Cognitive-mediative leadership model

(Video) Arousal, Anxiety, & Stress | CSCS Ch 8

This model takes situational approaches to leadership behavior and argues that coach behavior varies based on situational factors. It is also argued that the effects of coaches' behavior are a function of the coaches' personal characteristics. These, in turn, are mediated by situational factors and the importance that athletes attribute to the coach's behavior.

Studies that attempted to assess specific training behaviors found that the majority of training behaviors were positive and fell into these three categories: positive reinforcement, general technical guidance, and general encouragement. Players rate their teammates more positively after playing behaviors that fall into one or more of these categories. Also, these players showed more self-esteem towards the end of the season. One study showed that facilitating positive interactions between athletes and coaches made athletes enjoy the experience more and develop positive self-esteem. This kept them involved and participating in the sport, and their dropout rate was lower.

Multidimensional model of sports leadership

This model assumes that the effectiveness of sports leaders depends on the characteristics of the students and the constraints of the situation. According to this model, an athlete's satisfaction and performance depend on three types of leadership behaviors: required, actual, and preferred. A situation, a member, and a leader give rise to these three behaviors, which is why they are called antecedents. Leadership traits are the personal factors and member traits and situational traits are the situational factors. Some researchers believe that there is a direct relationship between preconditions and leader behavior, while others believe that preconditions influence leader expectations and values, which in turn influence leader behavior. Some scholars believe that a positive outcome is more likely when all three aspects of leadership are aligned.

Organizational systems can dictate behaviors and people are expected to obey established norms. Teachers have to behave a certain way in front of their athletes, parents and reporters. This is an example of necessary leadership behavior. Actual leadership behavior is the behavior that the leader exhibits, such as B. the initiation of structures. The characteristics of a leader directly affect this behavior. Actual behavior is indirectly influenced by group preferences and the realities of the situation. Preferred leadership behaviors are behaviors that people prefer from their manager. Personality variables affect a person's preference for advice, support, and feedback. Situational characteristics also influence a person's preferences.

The pursuit of excellence

Leadership and the pursuit of excellence are often associated. Chelladurai identified the most appropriate leadership factors to facilitate the pursuit of excellence in sport. His suggestions come from his multidimensional model of sports leadership and from research using a combination of transformational leadership. Transformational leadership occurs when the leader takes a stand to inspire people to follow her vision and work together to excel. This leader has the ability to motivate and inspire his followers to achieve more than they thought. Some of the leadership guidelines for the pursuit of excellence are inspiring communication, personal recognition, creating a compelling vision for people to follow, fostering self-esteem, facilitating flow, and providing cognitive coaching. , emotional and technical. These leaders transform the person by fostering traits such as self-esteem and creating a situation that supports a compelling vision.

Research on the multidimensional model

Many researchers have tested the accuracy and usefulness of the multidimensional model. These studies have suggested some applications. Sometimes group members get used to certain behaviors and may prefer them. The Leadership Scale for Sports (LSS) was developed to measure leadership behaviors such as: B. an athlete's perception of their coach's behavior, an athlete's preference for certain behaviors, and a coach's perception of their own behavior . The LLS has five dimensions:

  • Coaching: This coach scores in an attempt to improve athletes' performance by providing technical instruction.

  • Democratic Behavior: These coaches involve athletes in decisions about group goals and strategies.

  • Social Support: These coaches care about the well-being of the athletes and seek to develop a warm relationship with them.

  • Autocratic Behavior: This trainer makes decisions independently.

  • Positive feedback: This coach regularly praises or rewards athletes for their good performance.

leadership story

There are some studies that have focused on the precursors that influence executive behavior. Studies have found that as people age, they increasingly prefer autocratic and socially supportive coaches. Mature athletes take their sport more seriously. Therefore, they want a coach who can take down but also support. Other studies suggest that younger (10-13) and older (14-17) prefer less autocratic coaches. Studies have also shown that men prefer autocratic behaviors and training styles more than women. Therefore, coaches should be more direct with men. Women prefer a more democratic training behavior. However, both genders want a high frequency of training behavior and feedback from their trainers. Cultural background can also influence leadership preferences. One study showed that Japanese college athletes prefer more social support and autocratic behaviors than Canadian athletes. Canadian athletes prefer instructional behaviors more than Japanese athletes. People of different sports also prefer different styles of training. People who play highly interactive team sports (basketball, soccer) are more likely to prefer an autocratic coaching style than athletes in coagulating sports (tennis). When examining preferences for training behaviors, people's personalities should also be considered.

When a coach leads with a style that suits the preferences of group members, the result is great performance and satisfaction. Athletes will be less satisfied if their coach does not have the coaching style they prefer. The greater the discrepancy, the lower the satisfaction. Social support and democratic decision-making are associated with high athlete satisfaction. Studies also show that training traits, such as better past win-loss percentages and younger age, produce higher satisfaction scores in athletes. Studies have also found that trainers who demonstrated more task-related behaviors and provided task-specific reinforcement were associated with more consistent exercise groups.

Many researchers have developed interventions to improve the leadership of people involved in sports environments.

Four Components of Effective Leadership

There are four general components of effective leadership. These are the qualities of a leader, leadership style, situational factors, and follower qualities. These four components are made up of many different approaches to studying leadership. There is no single best approach. Each approach contributes to understanding what makes leadership effective. Behavior is best understood as the interaction between these four components.

leadership skills

There are no specific personality traits that guarantee that a person will become a successful leader. Some think that there are certain traits that go along with being a successful leader. One is integrity. A leader's philosophy must be resistant to external pressures, have a solid structure, and be communicated and accepted throughout the organization. Managers must also be flexible and promote loyalty (teamwork). Leaders also need to build trust in their players and staff. This can be achieved by giving them decision-making powers. Managers must also be held accountable. You also need to be well prepared and resourceful. Patience and self-discipline are also important for leaders.

Leadership styles

A coach does not need to be completely autocratic or democratic. Coaches can combine these two leadership styles. Leaders must be able to determine what style best suits the circumstances and whether people can adapt to it. Leaders can also make decisions in five different ways/styles. The autocratic style means that trainers solve problems themselves, using the information available at the time. The autocratic consultative style means that the coach collects the necessary information from the key players and then makes a decision. In the one-on-one consultative style, the coach advises the players individually and then makes a decision. In the consultative group style, the coach consults with the players as a group and then makes decisions. In group style, the coach shares the problem with the players and the players make a decision without the coach's influence. Most coaches prefer the consultative, autocratic, group decision-making style.

situational factors

Managers must be sensitive to the current situation. You must consider several relevant situational factors to plan an effective leadership exercise. You should consider whether the sport is a team sport or an individual sport. You should also consider whether the sport is interactive or not. If it's a team, they need to consider the size of the team. As the size of the group increases, it becomes more difficult to use democratic leadership effectively. You have to consider how much time is available. When time is short, a task-oriented leader is most desirable. Leaders must also consider whether the group has a specific leadership tradition. Groups with a tradition of one leadership style will often find it difficult to transition to another leadership style.

The qualities of the followers.

The effectiveness of the leader also depends on the characteristics of those led. As mentioned above, older and more experienced athletes generally prefer an autocratic training style and women prefer a democratic training style. Other examples were given in the text above.

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Chapter 10 - Communication

Communication is an important part of our lives and a crucial element in the sports environment. A coach's success depends in part on her ability to communicate effectively with athletes, parents, assistant coaches and the media. Communication skills are important components that contribute to the personal growth and performance enhancement of athletes. Much has been written about communication in general, but only recently have sports psychologists begun to study communication. For this reason, researchers often need to transfer general communication findings to sports and exercise settings. The biggest problem with communication is that we often expect others to read our minds. A coach can communicate with a simple gesture, hoping that it will be enough information for the athletes. Communication errors often contribute to many problems between coaches and athletes. Ineffective communication can cause people to dislike and lose trust in each other.

The communication process

One-way communication always follows the same basic process. First, a person decides to send a message to another person. The sender translates (encodes) the thoughts into a message. The message is then conveyed (usually verbally, sometimes non-verbally) to the recipient. The recipient then interprets (decodes) the message. In the final step, the recipient thinks about the message and responds internally.

The same processes occur in all communications, but the purposes of the communication may be different. A coach can communicate to persuade someone, communicate to evaluate someone, communicate to inform someone, and communicate to resolve a conflict between two members. Communication can also serve different purposes at the same time.

types of communication

Communication occurs in two ways: interpersonal and intrapersonal. When we talk about communication, we usually refer to interpersonal communication. Interpersonal communication involves at least two people and a meaningful exchange. The sender is trying to influence someone's response. The message can be received by the person for whom it is intended, but it can also be received by someone for whom it is not intended. Sometimes a message can be distorted so that the message intended by the sender is not delivered. Nonverbal communication is also an important part of interpersonal communication. Studies have found that players' non-verbal behavior and dress affect observers' performance evaluations and outcome expectations.

Intrapersonal communication is the communication that people have with themselves. Internal dialogue is important to people. It helps shape and predict our behavior and performance. Self-talk can affect motivation. The way coaches communicate influences the internal dialogue of their athletes. Positive and negative feedback from coaches influenced their athletes' internal dialogue. Both positive and negative feedback from coaches led to more positive and negative self-talk among athletes. This is an example of how interpersonal communication influences intrapersonal communication.

send messages

Effective communication is important in the world of coaching. Coaches need to understand how to send effective messages. Studies have shown that coaches can learn effective communication skills. The researchers suggested that coaches should be comfortable with their communication style. It should also increase the self-confidence of your communication style. Self confidence is very important. Sometimes coaches think they have given athletes instructions, but that may never have happened. For this reason, methods must be developed to increase the trainer's self-confidence in communication.

Verbal messages must be sent clearly and must be received and interpreted correctly by the recipient. People must choose the right time and place to deliver their communication. However, trainers often do not choose the right moment for a message. Communication interruptions occur because messages do not arrive, are ineffective, or are misinterpreted. Sometimes it happens because of a lack of trust between the coach and the athlete. There may be problems getting the message across. Some people talk too much and distract others, while others talk too little and don't provide enough information. There are many non-verbal signals that are used in communication. Studies have shown that about 50% to 70% of the information conveyed in a communication is non-verbal. Studies have also shown that nonverbal communication increases during competition. Therefore, it is important that coaches and athletes pay attention to your non-verbal cues. Sending and receiving messages improves as understanding of the different types of nonverbal communication improves. Nonverbal messages are subject to less conscious control and are therefore more difficult to hide than verbal messages. These messages can betray our unconscious attitudes. Nonverbal messages are powerful, but often difficult to accurately interpret.

Appearance is the first impression one has of a person. Clothing can convey powerful information. Studies have found that athletes reported lower confidence when their opponent wore specific sportswear. Attitudes also send messages. Athletes often tell discouraged opponents by the way they move. They decide to go hunting. Studies on penalty kicks showed that goalkeepers and players perceived penalty takers with dominant body language more positively and expected them to perform better than players with submissive body language. Posture can affect athletes' perception of competitors, but how this actually affects performance needs further study. Gestures also convey messages. Crossing your arms in front of your chest shows that you are not open to others. Body position is the personal space between a person and others and also a form of non-verbal communication. Touch can also be a powerful form of non-verbal communication. Touch can be used to calm someone down or to express feelings. The face is the most expressive part of the body, and eye contact is particularly important in communicating feelings. Eye contact means that the listener is interested in the message. The sound of a voice can also improve communication (or vice versa). The quality of a voice (tone, volume, speed, and articulation) can reveal true feelings and attitudes. To send messages effectively one must be direct, complete, consistent with verbal and non-verbal messages, stick to what you say, focus on one thing at a time, reinforce through repetition, seek feedback that the message was successfully received and supported. The six C's are the main points of communication: clear, concise, correct, constructive, polite and complete.

Traditionally, communication has been viewed as a verbal conversation between two or more people. Technology has changed significantly in recent decades, and trainers now often communicate through electronic means, such as email, text messages, and cell phones. Many teams have established social media presences. Studies show that athletes often use Twitter as a tool to increase fan-athlete interaction. Young athletes grew up with all the electronic means of communication. These athletes feel more comfortable communicating this way because they are familiar with electronic communication devices. It has become necessary for coaches to become familiar with electronic forms of communication to allow for more seamless interaction with athletes.

Receive messages effectively

It turns out that people spend 40% of their communication time listening. Listening is considered one of the most important communication skills. Most students learn to write and speak, but rarely receive formal training in listening comprehension. Active listening is the best way to become a better listener. Active listening means paying attention to key ideas, responding to them, giving appropriate feedback, and paying attention to the speaker's overall communication. Active communication also includes a certain amount of non-verbal communication. Some of the non-verbal contacts are head nodding and active eye contact. Being heard is the most important thing for a person to feel accepted. People need to show that they are trying to listen to others. People may think that they are available to others, when in reality they are not. Good listening shows sensitivity and promotes an open exchange of feelings. Active listeners often paraphrase what the speaker has said. Asking specific questions to allow a person to express their feelings is also part of active listening. When someone paraphrases a person's thoughts, they are letting the speaker know that they are listening and that they care. This leads to more open communication and sharing because the speaker feels the interest. Listening sometimes requires mental preparation. Listeners should avoid using the word "why" when asking questions, as it can sound judgmental. When you are a sympathetic listener, you are with the speaker and appreciate the person's message. People also have to listen consciously. People can react differently to the way someone communicates. Listeners must be flexible. Different situations call for different strategies. People need to pay attention to communication barriers and disruptions. Empathy is the ability of a person to perceive and understand the feelings and attitudes of others. Studies have shown that sharing similar ideas helps coaches and athletes understand each other and empathize with each other's thoughts and feelings. Empathy is not always correct. Coaches have to work hard to get to know their athletes.

communication breakdowns

Effective communication requires skill and effort on the part of the listener and the speaker. The communication process can be complicated and often fails. Technology has improved the speed and efficiency of some types of communication, but not much progress has been made in the interpersonal aspects of communication. This usually happens because people think that others are ineffective, not themselves, and they don't see the need to improve their own communication skills. Another problem is that people show a lack of confidence. Honesty must be developed between people before effective communication can take place. Failures can result from receiver or transmitter failure.

sender error

Senders can deliver a message poorly. Ambiguous messages are not effective. Senders should be more specific. Inconsistent messages also cause communication failures. It's boring to hear one thing today and another tomorrow. Inconsistency arises when the verbal and nonverbal channels conflict. A coach may offer words of encouragement to an athlete trying a new skill, but the coach's face may show impatience. Coaches want to build credibility in their communication. They must agree with all athletes.

receiver error

One mistake recipients can make is misinterpreting the message. Recipients also cause problems when they don't listen. A transmitter is very good at transmitting information, but if the listener looks out the window, the communication will be interrupted. The recipient must make an effort to listen. Some researchers have identified three levels of listening. The first level is active listening, which is a desirable way of listening. The second level refers to simply listening to the content of the message when listening. The speaker will feel that the listener is not interested. At the third level, the listener only hears part of the message, and therefore no real understanding is possible. Today's society is rushed and people often think about what they want to say instead of paying close attention to what the sender is saying before formulating a response. Interpersonal conflicts can be the result of poor listening. Other consequences are frustration and lack of communication.

communication improvement

There are some barriers to effective communication, but people can improve communication with active, hands-on attention. Studies show that well-designed interpersonal communication training can improve team morale and cohesion, allowing people to communicate more effectively. This can lead to better performance. Another way to improve communication is to schedule team meetings. Meetings should be regular, focus on the team's difficulties, and also provide a constructive assessment of the situation. The coach should establish rules for the meeting. Team members must be receptive to each other's opinions, information must be kept confidential, everyone must have a chance to express themselves, team members must be constructive, and everyone must have at least one positive thing to say about each event. Some researchers recommend role-play exercises to put yourself in another person's shoes.

Improve team coordination

Coaches should develop game plans that emphasize the coordination of all players on the team. Everyone should be on the same page. Each player must know his position and role. Trainers must use multiple sensory modes to present plans. They can guide a team through a plan, they can create it on a whiteboard, they can show a video, or they can provide a written manual. Instructors should also use constant reminders to increase redundancy. It can also be useful for players to access game information at any time. Trainers may also choose to give instructions with concrete objects, such as handouts. Trainers must also explain why they chose this game mode. Coaches need to increase the chances that players will hear and understand what they are saying. They can encourage team members' listening skills, can ask questions, and must check that plans have been received. People want to improve their communication skills so that athletes and coaches can have better interpersonal relationships. The COMPASS method is the method used to maintain the relationship between coach and athlete.

  • Conflict management: proactive strategies (clarify expectations and avoid conflicts) and reactive (cooperation in discussions)

  • Opening: talk about personal issues

  • Motivation: Coaches and athletes show effort and motivate each other

  • Positivity: the adaptability of a coach and external pressures

  • Consulting: giving and receiving positive and open feedback

  • Support: show that one is there for the other

  • Social networks: spending time together

dealing with confrontation

The nature of communication can be difficult. Examples of this are when coaches need to inform players that they will be kicked off the team, removed from the starting lineup, or penalized for breaking a rule. If there is moderate conflict between the athlete and the coach, they can still have positive interactions as long as both express their points of view. One study showed that interpersonal conflicts were more destructive than performance conflicts. Things that can help mitigate interpersonal conflict include team building, early conflict resolution, holding structured team meetings, and involving facilitators. Some researchers believe that athletes need to learn conflict resolution skills. If conflicts and communication are not handled carefully, communication problems can arise that can lead to confrontations. A confrontation is a face-to-face conversation between people in a conflict. Confrontations are not always negative. When used correctly, they help the parties understand the issues more clearly. One thing is for sure: confrontation should be avoided when someone is angry. People are uncomfortable with confrontations because they expect a stressful encounter. A match between athletes and coach may have an additional problem, which is the difference in power. Matchups can be used in certain situations. Confrontations should not be used to put others in their place, but to challenge behavior and consequences. Once someone decides that confrontation can be used, they need to know how to confront a person. There are certain assumptions to address conflicts. The first is that all needs are important and must be satisfied. The second is that there are enough resources to cover all needs. Another approach is that everyone can offer solutions to problems. The next is that the listener must pay attention to what is happening with the person who is communicating. The next focus is that improving situations is not the same as solving problems. Besides, each one is right from her point of view. There are always two sides to a story and people need to hear the other side. The last approach is that the solutions are temporary and not absolute. People need to be flexible and change when necessary.

constructive criticism

Sometimes criticism is necessary. People often view criticism as a threat to their self-esteem. People are more focused on defending themselves than listening to the message. Studies show that the sandwich approach is the most effective way to deliver criticism. This is a way to sensitively provide constructive feedback. The three sequential elements of this method are a positive statement, a prospective guide, and a compliment. When someone makes a mistake, they usually expect negative feedback from the coach. Often people point to the expected unpleasant news and never hear it. Therefore, it is important to phrase the first comment in a positive way. This ensures that you pay attention to the second part of the feedback. For the sandwich technique to be effective, the recipient of the communication must perceive the positive statement as genuine and not as an attempt to feel better. The most important aspect of the sandwich approach is forward-thinking education. This is a message about what you want the person to do next time. The last part of the sandwich is a compliment. When an interaction ends positively, the statement is more likely to be remembered.

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Chapter 11 - Psychological competency training

When athletes lose a game, coaches often try to correct poor performance with more training time. Often the real problem is not a lack of physical abilities, but a lack of mental abilities. Psychological Skills Training (PST) is the systematic practice of mental skills with the aim of increasing performance, pleasure and/or increasing self-satisfaction in sport. Most of the methods that are part of the PST come from mainstream psychology. Areas included are cognitive theory, behavior modification, attention management, emotional therapy, and progressive muscle relaxation. Athletes and coaches know that physical skills need to be practiced regularly through high repetitions. Psychological skills (eg, focus, arousal regulation, maintenance of motivation) should also be practiced systematically. Telling an athlete to relax will not evoke the desired response unless the athlete already knows how to relax through prior training. For this reason, scientists have developed guidelines to make brain training more effective.

meaning of pst

All athletes are victims of mental defects (for example, disgust at defeat, discouragement, lack of motivation and lack of consideration). The importance of mental abilities is reflected in the mental resilience attribute. Studies show that Olympic champions consider mental toughness to be a key requirement for sporting success. Mental toughness is an athlete's ability to handle pressure and mental resilience, focus, and bounce back from failure. With PST you can develop these mental abilities. Most coaches think that the sport is at least 50% mental when their team/athlete is facing an opponent of similar ability. Some sports are considered 80-90% mental. Psychological testing can help identify each person's psychological strengths and weaknesses, and this knowledge can be used to design an appropriate training program. Many athletes spend many hours a week in physical training and little or no time in mental training. This part is not good. Most competitions pair athletes of approximately the same ability (a nationally ranked swimmer will not compete against a B-level swimmer). In these competitions, winning or losing depends on how someone is doing that day. Since the physical abilities are pretty much the same, whoever has the best mental abilities wins.

pst neglect

Psychological skills are important for success, but why do people spend so little time developing psychological skills? Many coaches and athletes overlook the PST for three basic reasons: lack of knowledge, lack of time, and lack of understanding of psychological skills.

lack of knowledge

A lot of people don't really understand how to teach psychological skills. Telling an athlete to just relax is not enough. If an athlete hasn't trained in relaxation skills, she probably doesn't know how to relax. Many coaches have told sports psychologists that they are uncomfortable teaching mental skills. Coaches know execution skills and techniques, but don't know how to teach specific mental skills. According to a survey, tennis coaches thought they knew about sports psychology, but their knowledge about mental skills training did not come from books or formal courses. The coaches thought their knowledge came from actual experience working with athletes or visiting clinics. The trainers also suggested that the brain training information could be more user friendly. They even made suggestions for it. One of the suggestions is that there are more concrete examples, another is that more resources are developed for the training of mental abilities, mainly in audio and video. The final suggestion is that coaches should be more actively involved in mental skills programs.


Humans don't “just” have mental abilities. People often mistakenly assume that champions are born, not made. Some say that Volkssportlers are blessed with innate mental strength and a will to perform as part of their personality. However, that's not true. People are born with certain mental and physical dispositions, but skills can also be learned and developed. It all depends on the experiences that people encounter. There is no great athlete who has become famous without many hours of practice and without improving his physical skills.


Some studies have shown that coaches consider lack of time to be the biggest obstacle to teaching mental skills to their athletes. People often claim that they lost a certain game because they couldn't concentrate or weren't ready for the game. Coaches need to see that when their team is falling behind due to a lack of focus, they should take the time to practice focus skills instead of spending more time on physical training. The practice of mental skills is beginning to change. Studies have found a general increase in athletes' openness to mental training. Team athletes were more interested in mental training focused on group cohesion and team dynamics, and individual athletes were more interested in mental skills that would enhance performance in competition and training.


There are several myths that circulate about the use of psychological techniques to optimize performance. Studies have shown that younger athletes, male athletes, and athletes who have been socialized into contact sports place a particular stigma on sports psychology counseling. The myths are discussed in the next section.

1: PST is for problem athletes

Many athletes think that all sports psychologists only work with athletes with mental health problems. Of course this is not true. The psychological needs of most athletes can be addressed by specialists in educational sport psychology who focus on supporting the development of mental abilities in normally functioning athletes. Examples of PST needs addressed by educational sports psychologists include goal setting, arousal regulation, mental preparation, and focus. Clinical sports psychologists treat, for example, eating disorders, personality disorders, and severe depression.

2: PST is for elite training only

The PST is suitable for all athletes, including developing athletes, youth, and special populations (mental retardation, hearing impairment). Professionals work to improve performance and personal growth.

3: PST offers quick solutions

Many people think that sports psychology offers a quick fix for mental health problems. Some coaches and athletes believe that in just a few classes they can learn to focus or stay calm under pressure. Psychological skills take practice and time to develop. PST won't turn the average gamer into a superstar, but it can help athletes reach their potential.

4: PST doesn't make sense

Some people think that sports psychology has nothing to do with it. Research shows that psychological skills increase performance. Studies also show that effective PST efforts need to be done systematically, over time, and using a variety of psychological techniques.

knowledge pst

The PST knowledge base comes from two sources: the experience of coaches and athletes and original research conducted with elite athletes. There are several studies that have compared successful and less successful athletes in terms of their abilities and psychological characteristics. It appears that the most successful athletes were characterized by greater self-confidence, better focus and concentration, greater self-regulation of arousal, more determination and commitment, and more positive thinking. Successful athletes also achieve peak performance using mental imagery skills, arousal management, coping skills, mental preparation, and goal setting. Researchers are asking athletes about key sports psychology content and topics to include in PST programs. Coaches and athletes ranked focus, team cohesion, self-talk strategies, and relaxation training as important topics. Studies of Olympians showed that athletes' success depended on their developing plans for competing, evaluating performance, and managing interruptions. The athletes were eager to strive for excellence and overcame adversity by following their plans. Trainers also use psychological skills to help them do their jobs more efficiently. Elite coaches used internal conversations and images during training and competition. Self-talk has been used to overcome performance concerns, build self-confidence, and put yourself in the right mindset. They used images to control emotions.

PST effectiveness

Well-controlled studies conducted in competitive settings are needed to know how effective PST programs can be in improving athletic performance. Research has shown that pedagogically sound psychological interventions improve competitive performance in adult athletes. Many studies have shown that there are positive performance effects of psychological interventions. Research shows that world class athletes use more mental training compared to national level athletes. They also employ more complex mental strategies. Applied sport psychologists are beginning to understand that, to be effective, psychological interventions must be delivered individually and systematically over time. This goes hand in hand with the use of various psychological techniques.

Three Phases of PST Programs

PST programs can take many forms to meet the individual needs of participants, but generally follow a three-phase structure: education, acquisition, and practice.

Educational stage

The first phase of the PST program is educational. At this stage, the participants quickly realize the importance of acquiring psychological skills. You will also see how skills affect performance. Participants can usually be asked how important they think the mental aspect of sports performance is. Most athletes will tell you that it is very important. The next question to ask yourself is how often do they practice developing mental skills compared to practicing physical skills? The answer will probably never be. Then you have to explain how psychological skills can be learned. The education phase can last just one hour or several hours over several days. This depends in part on individual differences in PST usage. Another big part of the training phase is making athletes aware of the role mental capacity plays in performance.

acquisition phase

This phase focuses on strategies and techniques for learning various psychological skills. Formal meetings can help develop arousal regulation skills. Individual sessions may follow formal sessions. These sessions teach strategies specific to an athlete's unique needs and abilities. Cognitive-based strategies and physical-based relaxation techniques can be given.

practical phase

This phase has three main goals: to automate skills through overtraining, to teach people to systematically integrate psychological skills into their performance situation, and to foster skills that people want to use in real competition.


The PST has one ultimate goal, and that goal is for athletes to function effectively on their own without the need for constant guidance from a coach or sports psychologist. An athlete must be able to self-regulate his internal function after PST. Self-regulation means working toward short- and long-term goals by controlling and monitoring your thoughts, behaviors, and feelings. Kirschenbaum developed a five-step model for athlete self-regulation. The first step is to identify the problem. It is the ability to see a problem, to see that change is possible, and to take responsibility for solving it. The second phase is committing to the change and dealing with the obstacles. The third step is execution. This is the primary level of self-regulation. People need to self-assess, self-monitor, and self-reinforce during this phase. Environmental management is the fourth level. At this stage, a person must devise strategies to deal with the social and physical environment that affects the athlete. The last phase is the generalization phase. This involves sustaining efforts over time and expanding behaviors into new settings. Many researchers have found that various self-regulation strategies improve performance and promote positive thinking and emotional states.

Running PST programs

Ideally, a consultant should manage the PST program. Usually, a consultant establishes the program and regularly monitors it or trains technical staff to implement it. Choosing a qualified sports psychologist is crucial. An individual must have a sports science and psychology background and have some supervised practical experience implementing the PST with teams and athletes. A sports psychologist does not see athletes every day, unlike coaches. Coaches can implement psychological interventions over the course of a season. However, this dual role of the coach may pose an ethical dilemma. Athletes may find it difficult to reveal personal information that the coach-sport psychologist may perceive negatively. For this reason, the roles of sports psychologist and coach should be separated whenever possible. There are many athletes who do not have access to a mental training specialist. Therefore, some researchers have developed an online mind training method that is affordable, Internet-based, fully automated, taught by sports psychology experts, creates individualized mind training programs that follow best mind training practices, and provides tools useful in improving the success and performance of individual programs. innovative educational programs for parents and coaches. There is also a smartphone app that allows athletes to download a mental training program.

Implementation of PST programs

The best time to start a PST program is in the off-season or pre-season, as there is more time to learn new skills and athletes are not under as much pressure to win at this time. Some people say that it can take months to a year to fully understand new psychological skills and incorporate them into real competition. Mental training is an ongoing process and must be integrated into physical practice over time. Sometimes coaches may become distressed by an athlete's performance and may want to start a PST program in the middle of the season. However, mental training is rarely effective in such a situation. The time needed to practice mental skills varies depending on what is being practiced and how easy it is to learn. When learning a new psychological skill, specific training sessions of 10-15 minutes, 3-5 days a week, may be necessary. After a while, athletes can integrate mental training or physical training and may need less specialized exercise. When someone has effectively incorporated a skill into physical practice, they should attempt to use it during mock competition before using it during actual competition.

Sports psychologists who provide PST training often start with a group session to explain the general principles. He will then meet individually with the athletes. Athletes must be given training drills to practice between sessions with the Spc. The coach may direct training drills or allow time for athletes to practice. Ideally, the PST will continue as long as the athletes are participating in their sport. PST is an ongoing process, but an athlete's first exposure to PST in a formal program should take 3-6 months.

PST program development

A consultant needs to discuss your approach. You must describe to athletes what type of PST service can be offered. She should explain that the PST is an educational approach to mental training, and should explain that for more serious mental health problems she can refer you to a qualified therapist or counseling center. The pedagogical approach can help dispel the notion that seeing a sports psychologist means something is wrong with you. When a consultant discusses her approach, she needs to build trust and start building a quality relationship with the athletes. The quality of the relationship between the sports psychologist and the athlete is closely related to the effectiveness of the PST.

Psychological factors are not the only factors that affect performance. Athletes may think a mistake is made out of fear, when in fact it was made out of biomechanics. Input from coaches, physiologists, and teachers is often helpful. There are certain clues that can be used to determine if an athlete would benefit from mental training, and those clues are that the athlete is doing better in training than in competition, or doing worse in big events than in small events. . .

Oral interviews and written psychological evaluations can provide useful objective and subjective information for sport psychologists. However, there are certain factors that exercise psychologists should consider before conducting questionnaires and assessments. Some of these factors are the reliability and validity of the questionnaire, the usefulness of the questionnaire from the point of view of the athletes, and the honesty shown by the athletes in completing them. The authors of this book recommend a semi-structured interview. This includes general questions and opportunities to use the athlete's responses to create follow-up questions. The conversation is a good time to start building a therapeutic relationship. Sports psychologists should never ask why questions, as a client may not know the answer to the questions and may feel embarrassed or confused. Some use psychological inventories to assess various abilities. There are also situation and sport specific inventories. Interventions should not only assess an athlete's mental capacity, but also the unique technical, physical, and logistical demands of the sport itself.

After the evaluation, it must be decided which psychological skills to emphasize during the program. This decision should be based on a few things. For one, you need to know how many weeks of practice are available. You should also know how much practice time is spent on the PST each week. It should also be known how interested athletes are in receiving the PST and if there is time left to practice mental skills after the start of the competition season. If you don't have a lot of time and/or commitment, it's better to prioritize goals and highlight a few skills. Vealey proposed a model that emphasized various types of mental abilities. These skills are foundational skills (eg, self-confidence, self-assurance, and motivation), performance skills (eg, energy management and focus), personality development skills ( eg, identity performance) and team skills (eg, leadership and cohesion). .

After evaluating the skills, the training plan can be created. Informative events can be held. It is better to have short, frequent meetings than long, less frequent meetings. Informal meetings can take place anytime, anywhere. These meetings complement the structured meetings. Sport psychologists must decide when to start training and how long it should last. Some researchers have proposed a systematic periodization approach to the development of mental abilities. With this model, they try to maximize long-term development and maximum performance. There is a preparation phase in which the athlete performs performance exercises every day. There is a phase of the competition in which the athlete takes fewer photographs. He imagines not playing on the sports field. Then comes the culminating phase in which the athlete imagines demonstrating the actual game that he will play in a given tournament against a major opponent.

A PST program must be evaluated. Psychologists want to know which technique seems to work best and which doesn't. You need to know if the athletes found the counselor available, knowledgeable, and easy to talk to. Sports psychologists want to know the strengths and weaknesses of the program. There are certain general PST problems that can occur. One is the lack of conviction. Counselors often need to convince athletes and coaches that developing psychological skills facilitates success. Another is lack of time. Coaches often claim that there is not enough time to practice mental skills. Another reason is the lack of sports knowledge. The last one is the lack of follow-through. Some consultants or trainers implement a PST program but may provide little follow-up once the program is underway.

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Chapter 12 - Arousal Regulation

Stress is part of our daily life. With media attention and increased funding in sports, the pressure to perform in competitive sports has increased. Today's society values ​​winning and succeeding at all levels of competition, and trainees and coaches feel pressured to succeed. Some people do not handle the pressure of competitive sport well and this can lead to loss of performance, physical illness and mental stress. Burnout can be the result of sustained pressure and can lead to migraines and high blood pressure. There are different ways to deal with the pressures of competitive sport, all depending on the person and the situation. Athletes react differently to pressure, but the sport they play is also a big factor in how they react. Research has found that calling a timeout before crucial field goal attempts in professional football degrades performance but does not degrade performance in college basketball. Also, a certain relaxation technique may be better for managing cognitive (mental) anxiety, while another may be more effective for managing somatic (physiological) anxiety. The relationship between performance and arousal is somewhat complicated, and competitive athletes must learn to control their arousal. Athletes must be able to raise and lower them as needed. Athletes need to find their optimal arousal level without losing intensity and focus.

Awaken self-awareness

Controlling arousal levels requires being aware of arousal levels during training and competition. This is usually self-control. Athletes can often identify certain feelings with top performance and other feelings with poor performance. The study of the self-perception of arousal states has begun to focus on whether these states are perceived as facilitating or debilitating. Studies have found that elite athletes generally interpret their anxiety as greater relief than non-athletes. Sports psychologists can help athletes become more aware of their arousal states and interpret them positively. Studies have also found that people who view their anxiety as supportive are more likely to use both problem-focused and emotion-focused coping. People who view their fear as debilitating appear limited in their use of coping strategies.

Anxiety reduction techniques

Excessive anxiety can create inappropriate muscle tension and this can affect performance. Excessive muscle tension can develop very easily. Excessive anxiety can also produce inappropriate thoughts and cognitions. It is also important to interpret fear as empowering rather than debilitating in order to reduce anxiety. Studies have shown that three time periods were critical in interpreting fear. These are the time after the performance, a day or two before the competition, and the day of the competition. Studies have also shown that professional athletes relax more than recreational athletes in a typical week.

Somatic Anxiety Reduction Techniques

The progressive relaxation technique forms the basis of many modern relaxation methods. The technique consists of relaxing and tensing specific muscles. It is called progressive relaxation because relaxation progresses from one major muscle group to another until all muscle groups are completely relaxed. Progressive relaxation is based on a few assumptions: it is possible to learn the difference between relaxation and tension, tension and relaxation are mutually exclusive, and relaxing the body by reducing muscle tension reduces mental tension. Using tension-relax cycles, an athlete can develop an awareness of the difference between tensing and not tensing. When an athlete has mastered the skill, she can identify the tension in a specific muscle and then relax that muscle. The first sessions of this technique last up to 30 minutes for an athlete, requiring less practice time. Other researchers have also developed a variant of this technique.

Proper breathing is important for relaxation, and breath control is another physically oriented relaxation technique. Many athletes have not learned to breathe correctly. When working under pressure, they are often unable to coordinate their breathing with the performance of their skills. Holding your breath and inhaling increases muscle tension, and exhaling decreases muscle tension. Normally, in a competition, the pressure builds and the natural tendency is to hold your breath. This naturally increases muscle tension and affects performance. Normally, when you breathe deeply and slowly, your muscles relax. Humans can learn to inhale up to four and exhale up to eight. This helps to slow down the breath and deepen relaxation by concentrating on the exhalation phase. The best time to use breath control during competition is during a break or break. When people focus on their breathing, they relax their shoulder and neck muscles and are more likely to be less bothered by irrelevant cues or distractions. Deep breathing also provides a brief mental break from the pressures of the competition and can replenish your energy.

Biofeedback is a physically oriented technique that teaches people to control physiological responses. This usually involves an electronic monitoring device that can detect and amplify internal reactions. This instrument provides visual or audio feedback on physiological responses such as muscle activity, heart rate, and muscle activity. When the machine makes loud noises, the athlete knows to relax certain muscles. Once an athlete learns to reduce muscle tension, he must be able to apply that knowledge to the game. Biofeedback has been shown to improve the performance of recreational and professional athletes in a variety of sports by reducing anxiety and muscle tension.

Cognitive Anxiety Reduction Techniques

Some relaxation techniques focus more on relaxing the mind than others. These procedures state that relaxing the mind also relaxes the body. Physical and mental techniques can create a state of relaxation, but they work in different ways. The relaxation response is a technique that combines the basic elements of meditation but removes any spiritual or religious significance. There are many athletes who use meditation to mentally prepare for competition. Improve your ability to relax and focus. However, not many studies have looked at the effectiveness of the relaxation response in improving performance. The relaxation response requires four elements. These are a quiet place, a comfortable position that can be held for a while, a mental device (focus your attention on a single thought or word and repeat it), and a passive attitude. It takes time to learn the relaxation response. People should practice it about 20 minutes a day. The relaxation response teaches the person to quiet the mind and this helps to focus and reduce muscle tension. It is not an appropriate technique to use immediately before a competition, as athletes can relax too much.

Autogenic training consists of exercises that produce sensations. The attention is focused on the sensations that are trying to evoke. Feelings must happen without being disturbed. The six phases of this program are:

  • weight on limbs

  • heat in the extremities

  • Regulation of cardiac activity

  • breath regulation

  • abdominal heat

  • forehead cooling

It usually takes a few months of regular practice, 10 to 40 minutes a day, to practice the feeling of heaviness and warmth in the extremities and to create a feeling of a relaxed heartbeat.

Wolpe developed the systematic desensitization method. According to him, through a classic disease process, anxious people learned to have excessively high levels of anxiety, manifested by increased heart rate, blood pressure, and respiration in the presence of some stimuli. The goal of the technique is to replace nervous activity with competitive behavior. The client is first trained in deep muscle relaxation and then an anxiety hierarchy is built. This consists of 5-10 scenes, ranging from least scary to scariest. After the athlete has learned progressive relaxation, they are asked to visualize the first scene in the fear hierarchy. The athlete must continue to imagine this scene until he is no longer afraid. The next situation on the list is then presented until the athlete is no longer afraid. An athlete should do this until he can imagine the most terrifying scene without generating fear. This can take weeks or months.

Anxiety reduction multimodal packages

These packs can alleviate cognitive and somatic anxiety and provide systematic strategies for practicing coping skills under simulated stressful conditions. The most popular multimodal techniques are stress vaccination training and cognitive-affective stress management training. These techniques help athletes develop a variety of coping skills to deal with a variety of problems that result from various stressful situations.

Cognitive-affective stress management training is also abbreviated as SMT. It is a skills program that teaches people a specific integrated coping response that uses cognitive and relaxation components to manage emotional arousal. The theoretical stress model underlying SMT includes physiologically and cognitively based intervention strategies. The model takes into account the mental evaluation of the situation, the situation, the physiological response and the actual behavior of the person. This program offers specific intervention strategies such as relaxation techniques, self-learning training, and treatment of psychological and physical reactions to stress. This program has five phases:

  • Pre-Treatment Assessment: In this phase, the counselor conducts face-to-face interviews to assess the types of circumstances that create stress, responses to stress, and the ways in which stress affects performance and other behaviors. The athlete's behavioral and cognitive abilities are also assessed.

  • Treatment Rationale: During this phase, the counselor tried to help the player understand his stress responses by reviewing personal stress responses and experiences.

  • Skill acquisition: In this phase, athletes train in muscle relaxation, self-instruction, and cognitive restructuring.

  • Skill Test: The Counselor induces different levels of stress to provoke reactions in the athletes. These reactions are then reduced through the use of coping skills that the participant has acquired. Only trained physicians should use this component of the technique.

  • Post-training evaluation: The counselor uses several measures to evaluate the effectiveness of the program. The evaluation of the results can be valuable in making the appropriate changes, if necessary, and also in planning follow-up programmes.

Research has shown that Stress Inoculation Training (SIT) is effective in reducing anxiety and improving athletic performance. It also helps athletes deal with the stress of injury. The SIT approach shares some similarities with the SMT approach. In SIT, an athlete is exposed to increasing levels of stress and learns to manage it, which increases their stress immunity. SIT teaches people skills to deal with psychological stress and increase performance through the development of productive thoughts, self-assessments, and insights. SIT has a four-phase approach: preparation for the stressor, managing the stressor, managing feelings of charge, and evaluating coping efforts. This approach provides opportunities to practice your coping skills, starting with small doses of stress and progressing to larger amounts of stress. Athletes develop a sense of learned ingenuity by successfully managing stressors through a variety of techniques.

Hypnosis is a somewhat controversial technique for reducing anxiety. Hypnosis is an altered state of consciousness that can be induced through a process in which an athlete is in an unusually relaxed state and responds to cues to alter the athlete's perceptions, actions, and thoughts. Hypnosis in sports is used as an arousal regulation technique. Studies have shown that hypnosis is linked to feelings of peak performance states, leading to improvements in certain sports. Athletes noted a greater sense of relaxation. Hypnosis interventions have specific steps. The first phase is an induction phase. A participant must trust the hypnotist and after the athlete reaches a relaxed state, they are placed in a hypnotic trance. The second phase is the hypnotic phase. Athletes are asked to respond to specific cues, which are given once they are fully awake. These are called post-hypnotic suggestions. The next phase is the waking phase. In this phase the athlete comes out of the trance. The last phase is the post-hypnotic phase. During hypnosis, athletes receive suggestions that influence the posthypnotic phase. These suggestions focus on how athletes should feel when competing.

Studies show that anxiety reduction techniques are very effective. Multimodal approaches seem to be the most effective in terms of improving performance.

the correct hypothesis

The correspondence hypothesis states that an anxiety management technique must be tailored to a specific anxiety problem. This means that cognitive anxiety should be treated with mental relaxation and somatic anxiety with physical relaxation. Studies have shown that a somatic relaxation technique was more effective than a cognitive relaxation technique in reducing somatic anxiety. And the opposite happened with the cognitive relaxation technique. Reductions in somatic and cognitive anxiety were associated with some improvements in performance. Certain types of social support are more effective in reducing anxiety in athletes. Specific social support must be tailored to the specific social problems of the athlete. This will produce maximum effectiveness in reducing anxiety. However, some studies have shown cross effects (somatic relaxation techniques led to a reduction in cognitive anxiety and vice versa). This has led some researchers to argue that SIT and SMT are the most appropriate programs, since these techniques can work on both somatic and cognitive anxiety. The authors of this book recommend that if an athlete's anxiety is primarily cognitive, a cognitive relaxation technique should be used, and if it is somatic, a somatic relaxation technique should be used.

deal with adversity

Athletes must learn different coping strategies to use in different situations and for different sources of stress. Athletes sometimes use similar coping strategies from situation to situation, but they also change strategies from situation to situation. Successful athletes vary in their coping skills, but all of these athletes have skills that work when they are most needed.

There are many definitions of coping. The most popular is a process of constantly changing cognitive and behavioral efforts to satisfy specific internal and/or external demands. This definition views coping as a dynamic process that includes behavioral and cognitive efforts to deal with stress. It also emphasizes an interaction perspective. Individuals appear to exhibit similar coping styles in all situations, but the specific coping strategy they employ depends on situational and personal factors.

The two most popular coping categories are problem-focused coping and emotion-focused coping. Problem-based coping involves efforts to change the problem that is causing the athlete's distress. It involves gathering information, setting goals, managing time, talking to yourself, and increasing effort. Emotion-focused coping involves regulating emotional responses to the problem that is causing the athlete stress. It includes behaviors such as melancholy, self-blame, positive thinking, and mental withdrawal. Studies have shown that problem-focused coping is used more often when situations can change, and emotion-focused coping is used more often when situations cannot change. There is also a third category of coping, which is social support coping. Coping with social support occurs when a person turns to others for emotional support during times of stress. When there are multiple stressors, no one type of coping strategy is effective in all situations for athletes. Therefore, athletes must learn a variety of coping strategies focused on emotions and problems.

Studies have shown that coping techniques can help athletes. High level athletes and non-competitive athletes use different coping techniques. The best athletes prepare for unexpected events and this helps them better prepare for those events. Non-elite athletes use avoidance coping techniques more frequently than elite athletes. Factors such as age, sex, and pubertal status may affect the coping strategy used and its perceived efficacy. One study showed that coping effectiveness training improves athletes' coping effectiveness, performance, and self-efficacy. Coping styles can also differ by culture and race. Sport psychologists must consider these differences when counseling athletes of different races and cultures.

The use of induced excitation techniques.

Coaches often inappropriately use different energizing strategies to prepare athletes for competition. Athletes need to be at an ideal arousal level, and things like pep talks can over-excite them. If arousal is to be increased, it must be done consciously and aware of ideal states of arousal. There are attitudes and behaviors that indicate that someone is underactive. This can include slow movements, lack of enthusiasm, wandering thoughts, and a feeling of heaviness in the legs. Someone does not need to experience all of these signs to be hypoactive. The more someone realizes this, the more likely it is that they need to increase the arousal. These feelings often indicate that someone is not physically or mentally ready to play. These feelings can come from athletes not getting enough sleep, playing too much, or playing against a weaker opponent. There are certain things that one can use to generate more power and activate the system. One way to do this is to stimulate the respiratory system by taking deep breaths. Another option is to act energetically. Acting energetically can help restore energy. An athlete can jump up and down, do a sprint, or jump rope. Athletes can also use feeling words and positive statements. Positive affirmations can energize a person. Yelling and yelling can also stimulate an athlete. Energetic music can also be a source of energy. An athlete can also use energizing images. This can generate positive feelings and energy. The athlete has to imagine something that drives him. Sprinters can imagine cheetahs running across the plain. Swimmers could imagine moving through the ocean like a shark. Athletes can also do pre-competition training to get active. Coaches can also energize an entire team. One way to do this is to set individual or team performance goals and give a pep talk.

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Episode 13 - Pictures

Athletes often train their motor skills in their heads. Mental practice has a long tradition in sport and movement psychology. There were many popular athletes who shared their use of images before playing their sport. Athletes use images for themselves, but sometimes coaches also try to use images to improve athletes' performance. There is increasing scientific evidence supporting the efficacy of imagination, and more and more athletes are using imagination to enhance their performance.

set images

There are many terms that refer to an athlete's mental preparation for competition. Some of these terms are mental rehearsal, secret practice, visualization, imagery, and mental practice. All of these terms refer to the creation or recreation of an experience in the mind. Stored information from the experience is retrieved from memory and these pieces are transformed into meaningful images. The pieces are essentially a product of memory itself. Images are a form of stimulation. It feels like a real sensory experience, but the whole experience is in the mind. Everyone uses images to recreate experiences. Humans are capable of performing certain actions because they can remember events and recreate images and feelings about them. People can also imagine events that have not yet happened. Images can help athletes prepare for difficult situations so that they are prepared for different circumstances during competition. The images should appeal to as many senses as possible. The different meanings of the images are all important. The kinesthetic sense is useful for improving sports performance as it has to do with feeling the movement of the body in different positions. When an athlete uses more than one sense, he creates more vivid images and the experience is more real. Athletes can use their visual senses to see things, they can use their auditory senses to hear things, and they can even use their olfactory senses to smell things, like grass or a garden.

It is also important to associate different emotional states or moods with imagined experiences. Recovering emotions or thoughts through images can help control emotional states. Researchers have identified five key features of the image-making process: modality (the senses used in imaging), perspective (the visual perspective, first or third person), angle (the angle of view when imaging from one perspective). external), agency (the agent of behavior). ) and deliberation (the degree to which images are intentional).

The effectiveness of images.

Sports psychologists have tried to determine whether imagery improves performance and have looked at three types of evidence: case studies, anecdotal reports, and scientific experiments. There are numerous anecdotal reports. Many of the world's best athletes and coaches incorporate imagery into their daily training programs, and there are also many athletes who use imagery to help them recover from injuries. Studies show that 100% of sports psychology consultants and 90% of Olympians have used some form of imagination. 97% of these athletes believe that images improve their performance. Anecdotal accounts are the most interesting evidence of the power of the imagination, but they are also the least scientific. Case studies are more scientific. In case studies, researchers closely observe, monitor, and record an individual's behavior over a period of time. Some case studies have shown the efficacy of imaging. Some researchers today use case studies with multiple baselines. These are studies of a few people over a long period of time. These researchers found a positive effect of imagery on performance enhancement and other psychological variables. Many studies have also focused on psychological intervention packages. These are approaches that use a variety of psychological interventions in conjunction with imagery. These interventions demonstrated a positive relationship between imagination and performance. There is also evidence of scientific experiments in support of the images. These studies have shown the value of imagination in the learning and performance of motor skills.

images in sports

Research has shown that images can positively improve performance. Recent discoveries have revealed details about the use of images, and these discoveries can help professionals design training programs around images. Studies have shown that most images come from practice and competition. Images are used more in competition than in training. It seems that athletes use imagery to enhance performance. Studies have also shown that athletes use images before, during and after training, they also use them outside of training (at home and at school), and before, during and after competition. Some studies suggest that athletes use images more frequently outside of training than during training. Athletes report using more images before competition than during or after competition. They also use it more during exercise than before or after exercise. The images are underused after training and competitions. Some studies suggest that the images are used while athletes are injured. However, athletes use images more frequently during competition and training than during rehabilitation. Imagination during rehabilitation focuses on motivation to recover and rehearse rehabilitation exercises.

Some scholars distinguish between two functions of images: motivational and cognitive. People use the specific side of motivation (SM) to visualize specific goals and goal-oriented behaviors, such as winning a specific competition. Studies have shown that general motivational imagery should be classified into general motivational mastery (MG-M) and general motivational arousal (MG-A). An example of MG-M is a good image to maintain confidence. MG-M appears to be a strong predictor of mental toughness. An example of A-MG is the use of images to increase arousal. Studies have found that MS imaging was most effective in helping athletes maintain confidence and focus. All three types of motivational imagery have been shown to be effective in increasing motivation. MG-A and MG-M were effective in regulating arousal.

Specific Cognitive Images (SC) focus on performing specific motor skills and General Cognitive Images (GC) relate to practicing all games and routines. Studies have found CS images to be more effective for skill execution, learning, and performance enhancement. The GC was more effective in learning and executing the strategy. Mental training should complement and supplement physical practice, not replace it.

Many researchers have closely examined what and how athletes imagine. The results refer to four aspects of the image: positive or negative nature of the images, the perspective that the athlete assumes when creating images, images of the environment in which the athlete competes and the types of images (auditory, visual, kinesthetic and olfactory). ). . Athletes often report mapping competitive environments. This can increase the vibrancy of the image and make it look more realistic. Positive images are most often reported during training and prior to competition. Negative images are most commonly reported during competitions. Images can sometimes negatively affect performance. This happens when the images create a lot of fear, the images call attention to irrelevant factors, the images make the athlete arrogant, and the images are uncontrollable. People often tell themselves that they shouldn't do something. But is this positive or negative? Studies have shown that the accuracy of a group using positive images was improved regardless of image frequency. For the group that used image suppression, the results were different. Studies show that suppressing images resulted in lower location performance than supporting images. When you tell yourself not to imagine something you don't want to do, you're more likely to imagine it, and that hurts actual performance.

(Video) Psychological Techniques for Improved Sport Performance | CSCS Ch 8

Studies show that athletes describe four types of imagery (visual, auditory, kinesthetic, and olfactory) and most commonly use both kinesthetic and visual imagery. That doesn't mean the other two aren't important. The best way is to combine kinesthetic and visual information into imaging skills. Athletes adopt an external or internal perspective to view their images. It all depends on the situation and the athlete. When using the internal image, imagine yourself performing a skill from your own perspective. The interior images are from a first person perspective and therefore these images emphasize the sense of movement. When using external images, look at yourself from the perspective of an outside observer. Regarding performance results, some credible differences were found between the indoor and outdoor images. Research on these two is inconclusive. Many people alternate between external and internal images.

Factors Affecting Effectiveness

There are a few factors that determine how well images can improve performance. One of those factors is the nature of the task. Studies have shown that tasks that primarily involve cognitive (decision-making) components derive the greatest positive benefit from imaging tests. Images have proven effective in a variety of tasks. Another factor is the skill of the performer. The visuals help both experienced and inexperienced athletes, but the effects are a bit stronger for experienced players. Experienced athletes also used images more often. Another factor is imaging capacity. The most powerful factor affecting the effectiveness of imagination is the athlete's ability to use imagination. Studies show that images are more effective when people have a stronger imagination. Imagination comes in many forms, and the better athletes are at a given imagination, the more they will use that type of imagination. Imagination can be seen as a skill, so with practice a person can improve the control and vividness of their imagination. Another factor is the use of images in conjunction with physical exercise. It should be added to normal physical practice. Finally, personality traits were considered important in psychological preparation. Personality can influence the effectiveness of psychological skills used by athletes. Studies have shown that narcissists who used external imagery had greater performance gains than those who used internal imagery. It has been suggested that external images allowed narcissists to focus on themselves. Because the outside perspective gave them the opportunity to see themselves in action. Further research should examine the influence of other personality traits on imagination.

How images work

How can imaginative thinking help athletes achieve the things people imagine? Human beings can generate information from memory that essentially corresponds to actual experience. Imaging events can have a similar effect on our nervous system as actual experience. Sports psychologists have proposed various explanations for this phenomenon. However, there is no theory that can really explain all the different discoveries surrounding imaging research.

psychoneuromuscular theory

The psychoneuromuscular theory arose together with the principle of ideomotor conception. This principle suggests that the image facilitates the learning of motor skills due to the nature of the patterns of neuromuscular activity that are activated during the image. So when something is vividly imagined, it innervates the muscles in a similar way to the physical practice of movement. Mild neuromuscular impulses are believed to be identical to those generated during actual performance. When people vividly imagine performing a movement, they use neural pathways similar to the ones they use when performing the movement. Positron emission tomography and magnetic resonance imaging studies have shown that certain areas of the cerebral cortex are much more active when a person is using images than when they are resting. Studies have found that many of the brain areas used during the process of visual perception are also used during the viewing of images. It seems that the images share some of the same brain processes with real vision.

symbolic learning theory

Symbolic learning theory suggests that images can act as a coding system that helps people understand movement patterns. One way to learn skills is to become familiar with what needs to be done to perform them successfully. When one creates a motor program in the central nervous system, a mental plan is formed to successfully complete the movement. Studies have shown that people who use images perform better on primarily cognitive tasks than on primarily motor tasks.

bioinformation theory

Bioinformation theory is the best-developed theoretical explanation for the imaging effect. This theory states that a description of an image consists of two main types of statements. These are the Stimulus Proposition and the Response Proposition. The former are responses that describe specific characteristics of the stimulus in the scenario being imagined. For example, imagine people sitting on the sidelines. The latter are statements that describe the reaction of the imager to the respective scenario. These are designed to evoke physiological activity.

triple code model

This model states that the meaning that images have for the individual must also be contained in the image models. This model also emphasizes the understanding of three effects that are essential components of images. These are known as ISM. The first part is figure (I). The second part is the somatic response (S). This refers to the act of imagination that leads to psychophysiological changes in the body. The third aspect is the meaning of the image (M). Each image gives meaning to the individual photographer.


psychological explanations

There are some psychological explanations that have been put forward to explain the imagery effect. One is based on the theory of the attentional activation sentence, arguing that the images act as a setup sentence that helps to reach optimal levels of activation. Another suggests that imagination helps develop psychological skills, which are essential for performance enhancement. Another area suggests that imagination may have a motivational function, helping the athlete focus on positive outcomes.

Athletes can use images in a variety of ways to enhance their mental and physical abilities. For example, it can improve concentration, increase self-confidence, control emotional responses, deal with pain and injury, develop athletic skills, solve problems, and increase motivation.

effective images

Imagination is acquired through practice. Some athletes are good at it and others may not be able to imagine it in their heads. Good images have two factors: controllability and vividness.


People who are good at imagining use all of their senses to bring their images to life as much as possible. It is important to create an image as close as possible to the actual experience. People need to experience the thrill of real competition. They need to feel the focus, anxiety, and frustration that comes with their performance. When people have trouble with images, they need to imagine that they are in their living room. You have to mentally look around you and take in the details. People must also visualize a positive performance of a skill. You have to imagine them performing a specific skill in their sport. The third exercise is to imagine a positive performance. People need to remember as vividly as possible a time when they performed really well.


Another key to imagination is learning to manipulate images to make what you want. There are athletes who have problems controlling their images and tend to repeat their mistakes when viewing. The athletes could imagine doing something wrong. Controlling the image helps them visualize what they want to achieve instead of watching them make mistakes. The key to this is practice. One exercise that can help with controllability is the power check. People should imagine working on a specific skill that has given them trouble in the past. You have to think about what they did wrong and imagine doing the skill right. Another exercise is to imagine performance control against a strong opponent. Another exercise is the control of emotions. People need to imagine themselves in a situation where they are angry and use control strategies to feel the anger leave their body and try to control what they see.

Development of a visual language training program

Images must be part of the daily program to be effective. Imaging programs must be tailored to the needs and abilities of the athlete. If an intervention is tailored to an athlete's specific needs, it will be more comfortable and weightier. Some scientists have offered guidelines to make imaging more effective, and this is called the PETTLEP program: the physical (p) nature of the movement, the details of the (E) environment, the nature of the (t) problem, the (t) )temporization of the movement, the (L)acquisition of the content of the movement, the (E)movement of the movement and the (P)perspective of the person. Some studies have shown that PETTLEP principles improve imaging efficiency. PETTLEP groups often perform better than the traditional image group.

When setting up an imagination workout, you must first assess the athlete's current level of imagination skills. People differ in how well they can imagine. However, it is difficult to measure a person's visual ability. This is because images are a mental process and are therefore not directly observable. Therefore, psychologists use questionnaires to try to discern different aspects of the images. There are several tests of imagination, and the Sports Image Questionnaire contains questions about how often people use different types of imagination. Studies using this questionnaire have shown that it is not the content but the function of the image that is most critical. When an athlete uses imagery to build confidence, it doesn't matter what image it is as long as it builds confidence.

After reviewing the results of the questionnaire, coaches can determine which areas should be incorporated into an athlete's daily training program. The imaging program should not be complex and should fit well into the athlete's daily training routine. For an imaging program to be successful, certain things must be done. One is that athletes must practice in many environments. People shouldn't lie on the sofa to get an idea. Athletes can start practicing imagery in a quiet environment, and once comfortable with imagery, they should practice in various settings. People should also strive for relaxed concentration. It seems that images preceded by relaxation are more effective than images alone. Relaxation allows people to forget about everyday worries and focus on the task at hand, and it also leads to a stronger imagination as there is less competition from other stimuli. People must also create realistic expectations and enough motivation. You must use vivid and controllable imagery, apply imagery to specific situations, and maintain a positive approach. Videos can even be made for the athlete to see themselves. The video must be edited so that athletes can watch the perfect or near-perfect skill over and over again. Another tip for a good image is the image in real time. The time spent imagining a specific skill should match the time it takes to perform it. Studies have shown that the better the performance, the greater the correspondence between real and imagined exercise times.

the use of images

When do people use images? Images can be used at any time. Studies have found that the more athletes practice imagery, the greater the positive effects on performance. Imaging three times a week was better than twice a week and twice a week was better than once a week. The images can be planned in a systematic way, inserting them before and after each practice session. These sessions should be limited to about 10 minutes, otherwise the athletes will not be able to focus on the images. Before practice, athletes should visualize the skills and plays that await them. After practicing, they should review the skills they are working on. You can also take photos before and after the competition. Before the competition, they have to review what they want to do. After the competition, they can imagine correcting the things they did wrong during the competition and learning from them. Athletes may also use images in the off-season. This is a good opportunity for her to continue practicing with images. Athletes can also use images at home or in quiet areas. Everyone has their own preference for photos. Imagination is sometimes used to relax an athlete and reduce fear of injury. Athletes can use images when recovering from injury. They can rehearse both the performance and the emotions that await them when they return to competition. That way they stay alert and ready to return. Studies have shown that positive healing images promote recovery.

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Episode 14 - Trust

Many coaches and athletes claim that confidence plays a big role in their mental success or failure. Great athletes are able to keep their confidence high despite their poor performance of late. An athlete's confidence can also be felt by his competitor. Research has also shown that the factor that most consistently separates top performers from underperformers is confidence. The best athletes, regardless of the sport, demonstrate strong confidence in themselves and their abilities. That's not to say top athletes don't have questions. They may doubt themselves at times, but still seem to think they can perform at a high level.

define self confidence

Trust is not easy to define. Sport psychologists define it as the belief that one can successfully perform a desired behavior. Initially, psychologists viewed confidence as a condition and a disposition, but recent thinking suggests that athletic confidence is a social cognitive construct that may be more like a condition or trait. It all depends on the time period used. Confidence can be something you feel today and therefore unstable (confidence state), or it can be part of your personality and therefore stable (confidence trait). Another view is that trust is influenced by the general sociocultural forces surrounding sport and the specific organizational culture. Participation in some activities is considered more appropriate for women (figure skating) or men (wrestling) and this would affect the athlete's confidence.

When you expect something to go wrong, you create what's called a self-fulfilling prophecy. Waiting for something to happen helps it to happen. This phenomenon is common in training programs and competitive sports. Negative self-fulfilling prophecies can lead to a vicious cycle. This means that anticipating failure leads to actual failure, reduces self-image, and increases expectations of future failure. In the 1950s, runners couldn't run a mile in less than 4 minutes. They taught that it was physiologically impossible. Roger Bannister thought he could break the 4 minute barrier and he did. The following year, more than a dozen runners broke the four-minute mile. That's because they finally believed it could be done. Psychological limits are no longer imposed.

Self-awareness is multidimensional. There are different types of self-confidence in sports. Some of these are confidence in the ability to perform physical skills, confidence in the ability to use perceptual skills, confidence in one's own physical fitness, and confidence in one's learning potential. There are other types of self-confidence.

Confidence can help people inspire positive emotions, set goals, increase effort, increase focus, and maintain momentum. Trust can influence affects, behavior, and cognitions. This is called the ABC's of sports psychology. The relationship between performance and reliability can be represented by the inverted U shape. The highest point leans to the right. Performance improves as trust levels increase, up to a sweet spot. A further increase in trust results in a corresponding decrease in performance. People with ideal self-confidence believe that they can achieve their goals, that they will work hard to achieve them. This does not mean that they will always do well, but it is essential to reaching their potential. Everyone has ideal self-confidence, and too little or too much self-confidence can lead to performance issues.

There are many people who have the physical skills to succeed, but lack confidence in their ability to perform those skills under pressure. Doubt hurts performance. Doubt creates fear and breaks concentration. People who lack self-confidence focus on their weaknesses rather than their strengths. However, a little doubt prevents overconfidence. Arrogant people are falsely confident. High-spirited athletes slow down because they feel they don't need to prepare. People cannot be very confident when their confidence is based on real skills and abilities. As a general rule, overconfidence is much less of a problem than overconfidence. Overconfidence can occur when two athletes or teams of different abilities play against each other. The best athlete or the best team usually approaches the competition with high spirits. The best player/team will appear randomly and will be left behind at the start of the competition. The opposition will start to gain confidence and arrogant players will have a harder time coming back and winning. Some athletes feign arrogance. They often do this to please others and to hide real feelings of self-doubt. It is better that they express their feelings to the coach. Bandura believes that overconfidence does not exist and that it is an afterthought to failure. After losing to an inferior opponent, athletes often find that they took the opponent too lightly and did not prepare well enough. When athletes win, they almost never say they were overconfident, but they won anyway. The question of overconfidence needs to be answered.

There is a sports confidence model that consists of four components:

  • Athletic Confidence Constructs: Confidence varies on a continuum from the most characteristic to the most state-like. Sports confidence is multidimensional. It includes psychological abilities, physical adaptability, learning potential, decision making and adaptability.

  • Athletic Confidence Source: Several sources are considered to underlie and influence athletic confidence.

  • Consequences of confidence in sport: The effects are related to triangle ABC. it relates to the affects, behavior and cognitions of an athlete.

  • Factors Influencing Confidence in Sports: Organizational culture, personality, and demographics affect confidence in sports.

Expectations Affecting Performance

Trust is the belief that a person can successfully perform a desired behavior and therefore one's expectation plays a crucial role in the behavior change process. Studies have shown that when people are given a sugar pill for extreme pain (and they say it's morphine), it can provide just as much relief as a pain reliever. Expectations have a strong impact on performance. In one study, participants were matched up with someone they (mistakenly) thought was superior in arm strength and then instructed to wrestle. In 10 of the 12 contests, the objectively weakest subject (believed by both participants to be the strongest) won the contest. The most important factor was not physical strength per se, but the competitors' expectations of victory. Many studies have shown that self-confidence was a key factor in distinguishing between successful and less successful artists. Weightlifters who were told they were taking anabolic steroids (but were actually taking a placebo) performed better. The weightlifters who were told they were given a placebo performed worse than before.

Expectations of the coach and performance of the athlete

The coach's expectations can affect the athlete's performance. Studies have shown that coaches' expectations can alter the performance of their students and athletes. Studies have shown that coaches provide more feedback of all kinds to athletes that they have higher expectations of, and these athletes view their coaches more positively than other athletes. Coaches' expectations were a good indicator of their athletes' performance. There are certain events in the sports environment that seem to explain the relationship between expectation and performance. The first step is for coaches to set expectations. Sometimes these expectations are based on a person's gender, height, or race. These expectations are called personal cues. This can lead to false expectations. Studies have shown that psychological characteristics were the most prominent factors that coaches relied on when evaluating athletic ability. This may be because coaches feel that athletes at this level of competition are more likely to have the same physical abilities. Therefore, they believe that psychological factors distinguish one athlete from another. Coaches also use performance information such as past performance, exercise behavior, and skill tests. People and performance factors are divided into four categories: physical ability, maturity, trainability, and teamwork. If this leads to an accurate assessment of skills, that's fine. Inaccurate expectations lead to inappropriate behavior on the part of the trainer. Studies have shown that coaches tend not to change their initial expectations of athletes.

The second step is that the expectations of the coaches influence their behavior. Coaches who behave differently when they have high or low expectations of an athlete exhibit certain behaviors. One is that they spend more time with athletes with high expectations and show more warmth and positive feelings towards athletes with high expectations. The trainer allows the athletes you least expect to spend less time training. The coach will also teach these athletes less persistently difficult skills. The coach gives more instruction to athletes with high expectations and information to athletes who expect more. Trainers can also express their expectations through the type of environment they create.

The third step is that the behavior of the coaches affects the performance of the athletes. Expectation-oriented treatment by coaches influences performance both mentally and physically. Athletes who regularly receive more instruction and positive feedback from coaches will show greater improvement in performance. You also enjoy the experience more. Studies show that low expectation athletes perform poorly because they receive less effective reinforcement and less playing time. This is also because they have lower self-confidence. The final step is for the performance of the athletes to confirm the expectations of the coaches. This step shows the coaches that they were correct in their initial assessment of the athlete's ability. Some athletes turn to other sources, such as peers and parents, to get an idea of ​​their competition. This can help athletes resist bias communicated by a coach. Coaches need to be aware of how expectations are formed and how their behavior is influenced. They should also monitor the quantity and quality of the reinforcement they give.

Self-efficacy theory research

Self-efficacy is a situation-specific form of self-awareness. Self-efficacy is a person's perceived ability to perform a task successfully. The authors of this book use the terms self-confidence and self-efficacy interchangeably. The term self-regulatory effectiveness is used to refer to a person's ability to overcome obstacles to successful performance. There are other types of efficacy as well. Self-efficacy theory takes an interactive approach, in which self-efficacy and environmental determinants interact to generate behavior change in a reciprocal way. Bandura developed the theory of self-efficacy and this theory has some underlying assumptions. The first is that when a person has the necessary skills and sufficient motivation, the main determinant of that person's performance is self-efficacy. The other premise is that self-efficacy influences the athlete's choice of activities. Self-efficacy is also task-specific, but can be extrapolated to other similar skills. Self-efficacy is also related to goal setting.

sources of self-efficacy

According to Bandura, a person's sense of self-efficacy is derived from six sources of information:

  1. Vicarious experiences: Trainers often use demonstrations and models to teach students new skills. People who lack experience with a task may depend on others to assess their own abilities. People have to pay attention to what they see, people have to keep it. People also need to learn motor reproduction and show motivation to learn the skill.

  2. Achievements: Successful experiences increase self-efficacy. When experiments fail, they reduce effectiveness.

  3. Verbal Persuasion: Coaches and teammates use persuasion techniques to influence behavior. A positive type of encouragement is important and can help improve self-efficacy. Self-talk also increases feelings of self-efficacy.

  4. Imaginary experiences: People can generate beliefs about personal efficacy by imagining themselves behaving effectively in future situations.

  5. Physiological conditions: Physiological conditions can affect self-efficacy. This can happen when a person associates aversive physiological arousal with poor performance. When physiological arousal is seen as supportive, self-efficacy increases. Therefore, when people experience uncomfortable physiological arousal, they are more likely to doubt their competence than when they experience pleasurable arousal.

  6. Emotional States: Emotions can be an additional source of information about self-efficacy.

Studies have shown that efficacy can serve as a determinant of performance, and exercise behavior serves as a source of information on efficacy. Many studies have shown that higher levels of self-efficacy are associated with superior performance.

assess self confidence

Athletes need to identify confidence levels in different situations. The Sports Confidence Inventory provides a detailed assessment of your confidence level. The different columns in this inventory are the Confident, Subconscious, and Joyful columns. Another sports confidence measure is the creation of sports confidence profiles. An ideographic approach is followed. Athletes need to see themselves instead of answering a quiz.

Confidence can be built through practice, work, and planning. Trust can be improved in many ways. People can focus on acting confidently, performing, imagery, thinking confidently, optimizing fitness and training, responding confidently, imagery, goal mapping, and preparing. People also need to take the social climate into account when trying to build trust. That's because performance doesn't happen in a vacuum. Some social climate factors that appear to influence trust include target types, social support networks, leadership styles, and role models. Team effectiveness must also be built. Before the competition, team members must develop a common understanding of the skills. During the competition, team members need to believe in each other before and during the game. After the game, team members should develop internal team interpretations of experiences and incidents during the game. Collective efficacy is a precursor to task cohesion. It encourages the development of athletes who perform well on the court and share the same goals.

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Chapter 15 - Objectives

Setting goals is important. Goals give people direction, keep them motivated, and help people achieve something. It's not just athletes who set goals. Everyone sets specific goals. Everyone sets goals, but not everyone sets the right goals. Goals need to improve a person, motivate a person, and teach a person to achieve goals. It is easier to set goals than to pursue them. People need guidance on how to set effective goals and design a program to achieve them.

goal setting

People generally view goals in terms of objective and subjective goals. Subjective goals are general statements of intent (I want to have fun) that are not measurable or objective. Objective goals focus on achieving a specific standard, usually within a specific time frame. An example of this is losing 10 kg in three months. There are different types of goals:

  • Outcome Objectives: These objectives generally focus on the outcome of an event's competition.

  • Performance Goals: These goals focus on achieving performance standards or goals independently of other athletes. Usually, the person's past performances are compared.

  • Process Goals: These goals focus on the actions a person must take during performance to perform well.

Athletes should set goals for results, performance, and processes when changing behavior. Results goals can facilitate short-term motivation away from the competition (otherwise people become more anxious and have more distracting thoughts). Process and performance goals are important because people can often customize these goals much more precisely. Studies have shown that using a combination of goal strategies results in better performance than relying on just one type of goal.

effectiveness of goal setting

The motivation depends on the goal. People who play sports have long set goals for themselves. Psychologists have long studied goal setting as a motivation technique. They examined whether setting specific, difficult goals improved performance more than setting no goals at all. Studies have shown that goal setting works well in sports. Goal setting has a powerful impact on behavior. Studies have shown that there are several factors that enhance the effectiveness of goal setting in sports settings. Some of these are goals of moderate difficulty, goal specificity, commitment to goal achievement, feedback on progress toward goal achievement, and using a combination of different goals.

The researchers studied the relationship between different types of fitness goals and tasks. The best performance was associated with specific short- and long-term goals, and moderate to very difficult ones. Many studies have shown that setting goals improves performance better on tasks of low complexity than on tasks of high complexity. Sport psychologists have also learned a lot about the goal setting process, including how people set goals, how different people set goals, and which goals are most important to people. Studies have found that almost all athletes use some form of goal setting to increase performance. It seems that performance enhancement, joy and victory are the most important goals for athletes. Athletes' preferred target difficulty is moderate, hard, and very hard. Female athletes set goals more often and achieve them more effectively than male athletes. The more experience athletes have with goal setting, the better they will become at developing effective goal setting strategies. Goal setting is a powerful performance improvement technique, but it is not a foolproof method. The goal must be implemented with understanding, consideration, and planning.

Scientists have explained why goal setting works in two ways. Goals indirectly influence behavior by influencing some psychological factors such as fear and self-confidence. This is called an indirect view of the thought process. Studies show that high goal swimmers exhibited less anxiety, more confidence, and better performance than low goal swimmers. It appears that goals affect performance indirectly through effects on mental states. There is also the direct mechanistic view, which states that goals affect performance in one of four direct ways. These forms are:

  • Targets call attention to important elements of the skill being performed.

  • The goals mobilize the efforts of the performers.

  • Goals prolong the persistence of performers.

  • The goals promote the development of new learning strategies.

Goal Setting Principles

There are a number of goal setting principles. When applied correctly, these principles provide a good foundation for designing a goal setting program. The effectiveness of a goal setting program depends on the interaction between individuals and the situation in which they find themselves. The principles of goal setting are:

  • Set Specific Goals: Goals should be stated in specific, measurable terms related to behavior.

  • Set moderate, realistic goals: Studies show that moderate goals lead to better performance. You have to find a balance between the challenge of the goal and the ability to achieve it. When it becomes clear that the person is achieving the goals with ease, it is time to set more challenging goals.

  • Set short-term and long-term goals – Major behavior changes don't happen overnight, so people need to set both short-term and long-term goals.

  • Set Performance, Process, and Outcome Goals: The best way to win a championship is to focus on performance or process goals. Too much emphasis on performance goals creates anxiety during competition.

  • Set Training and Competition Goals – Athletes and coaches often focus only on competition goals. Athletes spend a lot of time practicing, so it's important to set training goals.

  • Record goals: Researchers recommend recording goals once set and posting them prominently. Athletes can write goals on an index card.

  • Develop Goal Achievement Strategies: Strategies need to be specific and include specific numbers so a person knows how to reach a goal.

  • Consider the personality and motivation of the participants: A person's personality, goal orientation, and motivation all influence what goals the person pursues and how well the goal setting process works.

  • Encourage individual commitment to the goal: Without commitment, an athlete will not reach a goal. Coaches should encourage goal retention by encouraging progress and providing constant feedback.

  • Provide goal support: Other people can help athletes with their goals. These people can be parents, teachers and friends. Studies have shown that spousal support is a key factor in exercise adherence.

  • Provide Assessment and Feedback on Goals: Sometimes coaches do not provide assessment and feedback on a person's goals.

Development of group objectives.

Sport psychologists have focused most of their attention on individual goals. But the goals of the group are also important. Some researchers have discovered that there are four types of goals in sports teams: a team member's goal for himself, an individual team member's goal, a team goal, and a team goal for an individual team member. . Group goals relate to the achievement of certain group competency standards. Studies show that goal setting facilitated performance for all groups, but it was particularly effective for groups who were very confident in their ability to plan. After defining the objectives of the group, it is important to identify the task that the group must complete to achieve its objectives. Group goals are also linked to behavior change through increased cohesion and motivation. Some researchers have outlined six principles for effective team goal setting. The first is to set long-term goals first. The second is to set clear paths for short-term goals on the way to long-term goals. The third is to involve all team members in defining these objectives. The fourth is to monitor progress toward these goals. Progress toward team goals is then rewarded. The last one is to build the collective confidence of the team.


There are many different goal setting systems, but most involve three phases: preparation and planning, education, acquisition and implementation, and goal monitoring and evaluation. A trainer should not enter a physical activity environment unprepared. Thought and preparation must precede effective goal setting. First, the abilities and needs of the athletes must be assessed. Then goals should be set in different areas. The objectives must be closely linked to the needs analysis. Goals should not be set solely to improve skills and performance. Influences on target setting systems should also be identified. The athlete's potential, commitment, and practice opportunities must be assessed before goals can be set. Then, strategies must be planned to achieve the objectives. Once preparation and planning is complete, the coach can begin directly educating the athlete on the most effective ways to set goals. Formal meetings need to be planned. In these meetings, coaches and athletes can identify examples of effective and ineffective goals. Athletes should also focus on one goal at a time (unless they have significant goal setting experience). Once athletes have learned to set goals, the next step is to list the goals that have been identified as appropriate. Appropriate goal evaluation procedures should be identified. The coach should offer support and encouragement. She must ask athletes about their goals and publicly promote progress toward their goals. The last thing she needs to do is plan to reassess the goals. Sometimes the goals you set for yourself don't work. Therefore, it is important to periodically reassess the goals.

problems with goal setting

Goal setting is not a difficult psychological technique, but that doesn't mean there won't be problems with implementing a goal setting program. Some common problems are convincing athletes to set goals, not setting specific goals, setting too many goals and not meeting them. Another problem is not recognizing individual differences.

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Episode 16 - Concentration

Many athletes agree that staying focused during the game is often the key to victory. Even a small loss of concentration can affect the result. It is essential to stay focused during the competition, even with the weather conditions and irrelevant thoughts. The best athletes are known to focus their attention during a competition. However, there are still many stories of athletes who performed poorly because they lost their concentration. Temporary loss of concentration can lead to defeat. Many athletes mistakenly believe that focus is only important during actual competition.

define concentration

Attention plays an important role in human performance. The contemporary definition considers attention as the concentration of mental effort on sensory or mental events. A definition of concentration in the sports environment generally includes four parts: selective attention (focusing on relevant cues in the environment), maintaining focus over time, awareness of performance and situational errors, and shifting attention focus when necessary. . Irrelevant references should be removed or unintentional. Learning and practice can help develop selective attention. This is because an artist does not have to worry about all aspects of the skill, as some aspects become automated with practice. Studies have shown that an external approach (outside the body) was better than an internal approach (in the body). It is difficult to stay focused for long periods of time. It is often necessary to change the focus of attention during a game. This requires a broad external focus. Athletes must evaluate the information and recall similar game experiences. This also requires a broad internal focus.

explain the focus

The main theories that try to explain the role of attention in performance have used an information processing approach. Early approaches favored a single-channel approach, where information is processed through a single channel, or a variable approach, where people can choose where to focus their attention. It turns out that none of these approaches were successful and we now prefer a multiple group theory approach. This approach views attention as multiprocessors, with each processor having its own unique relationship with the executor. Attention is not seen as centralized, but distributed throughout the nervous system. Within the information processing approach, three processes have received the most attention in attempts to explain the relationship between attention and performance. These will be discussed below.

selectivity of attention

Selective attention means allowing certain information to enter the information processing system while blocking other information. Some have suggested that a useful metaphor for understanding selective attention is a person using a spotlight to focus only on the important things. Not how long athletes focus, but what they focus on helps them perform at their best. If the headlamp is used incorrectly, three common mistakes can be made. One is the lack of full attention to the essential elements of the task. The second is the distraction of relevant information with irrelevant information. The last is the inability to pay attention to all the relevant signals that need to be processed at once. When people master a skill, they can move from more conscious control to more automatic control.

ability to pay attention

This refers to the fact that attention is limited by the fact that a person can only process certain information at a time. Athletes seem to be able to pay attention to many things during performance. This is because, as they gain experience, they can move from controlled processing to automated processing. Controlled processing is mental processing that involves conscious attention to what you are doing while performing an athletic skill. Automatic processing is mental processing without conscious attention. As artists become more proficient and attention spans become more automatic, attention is freed up to focus on other things.

willingness to care

Attentional alertness means that an increase in emotional arousal reduces the field of attention. Studies have shown that, in stressful situations, performance on a central visual task reduces the ability to respond to peripheral stimuli. Excitation can lead to a loss of sensitivity to signals located in the peripheral visual field.

optimal concentration and performance

The scientists examined the components of exceptional performance and found eight physical and mental skills that elite athletes associate with excellence. Three of them are associated with high concentration. Athletes describe themselves as mentally relaxed and highly focused, immersed in the present with no thoughts of the future or the past, and in a state of extreme awareness of their own bodies and their environment. Many researchers have found that focus of attention is an important differentiating factor. Successful athletes are less likely to be distracted by irrelevant stimuli. These athletes maintain a more task-oriented focus of attention and are not concerned with the outcome. Ophthalmological studies have shown that experienced players have a different focus of attention than beginners.

Types of focus of attention.

Most people think that focus is all or nothing: either you focus or you don't. However, studies have shown that different types of attentional focus are appropriate for specific sports and activities. Some view the focus of attention along two dimensions: breadth (wide and narrow) and direction (outer or inner). A wide focus of attention allows people to notice several things at once. This is particularly important in sports where athletes must be sensitive to a rapidly changing environment. An example of this sport is basketball. A narrow focus of attention occurs when someone responds to only one or two cues, such as the swinger in baseball. An external focus of attention directs attention to an object, and an internal focus of attention directs attention to feelings and thoughts.

Attention problems

Many athletes have trouble concentrating during a competition. Typically, athletes' concentration problems are caused by an inappropriate focus of attention. Worries and irrelevant thoughts can cause people to shift their focus from what they are doing to what they hope won't happen. People don't focus on the right advice because they get distracted by emotions and thoughts. It's not that they've lost focus too much, it's just that they've shifted the focus onto inappropriate leads.

internal baffles

Some distractions come from within and can come from our thoughts and worries. Studies of elite athletes have shown that worry and irrelevant thoughts can cause high-performance athletes to lose concentration and develop inappropriate focus. One of the distractors takes care of the last nights. Some people can't forget what just happened. Focusing on past events prevents one from focusing on the present. Difficulty concentrating may also imply participation in upcoming events. Sometimes people worry about the outcome of the event instead of focusing on what they need to do now to be successful. Future-oriented thinking and worries have a negative effect on concentration. This makes poor performance more likely.

suffocate under pressure

Emotional factors, such as competitive pressure, often play a crucial role in creating internal sources of distraction. Nausea is the underperformance of an athlete under pressure. Athletes have different ideas about what choking is. When athletes think about choking, they tend to focus on poor performance at a critical point in the competition. However, nausea is not just the actual behavior, but also the process that leads to poor performance. We say that athletes suffocate when their performance progressively deteriorates and they cannot regain control of their performance. When you feel pressure, your muscles contract. An athlete's breathing quickens and his palms are sweaty. Instead of focusing on relevant cues, the athlete focuses on their own concerns and fears of loss, and attention is limited. The increased pressure reduces the flexibility to change the focus of attention. This is followed by coordination disorders, muscle tension, tiredness and inability to make decisions. Some precursors to choking are high expectations, the importance of the event, a lack of familiarity, and being overworked.

Body Mechanics Super Crunching

It's not always good to focus too much on body mechanics. When learning a skill, it's good to focus on the inside to get the kinesthetic feel of the movement. The problem arises when narrow-mindedness continues after someone has learned the skill. The skill should be automatic and your attention should be focused primarily on what you are doing with a minimum of thought. Because of this, choking attacks can sometimes occur. According to the conscious processing hypothesis, choking occurs when experienced artists direct too much conscious attention to the task.


Concentration cannot be lost simply due to fatigue. Fatigue decreases the amount of processing resources available for the athlete to meet the demands of the situation.

Inadequate motivation is also an internal distractor. When someone isn't motivated, it's hard to stay focused.

External Deflectors

External distractors are environmental stimuli that divert people's attention from cues relevant to their performance. One of the external distractors is a visual distractor. There are so many visual distractions all around us competing for our attention. There are also auditory distractors. This includes noise from corona, mobile phones, conversations and overhead aircraft. Athletic success may depend on an athlete's ability to ignore such distractions while focusing on the cues most relevant to accomplishing the task he is supposed to do. Noise is inherent in most team sports and a quiet environment is expected for most individual sports. Therefore, crowd noise is typically more disturbing to a golfer than it is to a hockey player.

talking alone

Self-talk can also be an internal distraction. Every time a person talks to himself, in a way he is talking to himself. Talking to yourself can improve focus, break bad habits, sustain efforts, and build skills. Internal dialogue plays an important role in reactions to situations, and these reactions influence future actions. Self-talk can be classified into three types: positive (motivational), educational, and negative. Positive self-talk focuses on increasing energy and positivity, but does not include specific task-related advice. Instructive self-talk helps people focus on the technical or task aspects of performance to improve execution. Negative self-talk is self-demanding and judgmental. This is counterproductive and scary. Self-talk increases focus, motivation, and confidence, regulates arousal levels, breaks bad habits, and sustains effort. Studies have found that training behaviors can influence self-talk. Supportive coaching behaviors help foster a more positive and less negative self-talk. Negative training behaviors lead to more negative self-talk.

performance increase

Studies using a variety of different athletic samples have shown that different types of positive self-talk can improve performance. Studies have shown that both instructional and motivational self-talk are effective for tasks of variable precision, strength, motor coordination, and endurance. This works because distracting thoughts are reduced and the frequency of homework-related thoughts is increased. Instructional self-talk is more conducive to early learning performance than motivational self-talk. The nature, content, and delivery of the soliloquy are not as important as the individual interpretation of that soliloquy. Negative self-talk doesn't necessarily reduce performance. Self-talk interventions are most effective for relatively fine motor tasks versus gross motor tasks, novel tasks versus well-learned tasks, and training versus no training. Culture also plays a role in internal dialogue. East Asians have a higher proportion of negative versus positive self-talk than European Americans. Negative self-talk is associated with Europeans performing worse but East Asians performing better. It seems that self-criticism has fewer negative consequences for people from collectivistic cultures than for people from individualistic cultures. Supportive training behaviors are associated with more positive self-talk than less negative self-talk in athletes. Personality also seems to be related to internal dialogue. Achievement-oriented people have a more positive self-talk than failure-oriented people.

improve internal dialogue

There are certain "rules" for talking to yourself. One is to keep sentences short and specific, another is to use the first person and the present tense. Another is to construct positive sentences and say the sentences with meaning and attention. The next one is talking nicely to yourself, and the last one is repeating phrases frequently. Some strategies can improve internal dialogue. Two of the most successful are thought stopping and turning negative self-talk into positive self-talk. Thought stopping means briefly concentrating on the unwanted thought and then using a suggestion to stop the thought. It will clear the mind. The trigger can be a word or a trigger like a snap of the fingers. It all depends on the person. Habits are hard to break, so you must practice mind stopping continuously. It would be nice if someone could eliminate negative self-talk, but almost everyone has negative thoughts at some point. When negative thoughts arise, one can try to transform them into positive thoughts. This provides motivation and encouragement. Try to find out what situations give rise to negative thoughts and why. Then try to replace the negative statement with a positive statement. This requires some practice. Most researchers try to eliminate or change negative self-talk. However, studies have found that adding self-feedback to instructional self-talk can improve performance and focus. Self-feedback improved performance beyond self-talk.

attention span assessment

The Test of Attention and Interpersonal Style (AAIS) measures the style of attention or disposition of a person. This test has different scales. Three of the scales indicate aspects of effective approach and the other three indicate aspects of ineffective approach. People who are effective participants are good at concentration. They deal with simultaneous stimuli from external and internal sources. These individuals can effectively shift their attention from broad to narrow focus when necessary. You can respond to many stimuli without being overwhelmed by information. They can narrow their focus without missing important information. Ineffective participants cannot concentrate well and tend to become confused and overwhelmed by multiple stimuli. This applies to both internal and external stimuli. If they take a narrow approach, it's so narrow that important information is left out. However, TAIS does not care about the environment. It would be more useful if there were measures of sport-specific attention styles. This can help identify specific attention deficits that coaches and athletes can work on. The TAIS has been criticized for its validity and underlying assumptions. The researchers argue that other measures should be used. Some of these measures may be psychophysiological measures such as EEG measures. Neurological measurements such as heart rate can also be used.

concentration improvement

Concentration can be improved in many ways. Changes can be made to the field of play and athletes can practice certain exercises. There are six techniques that athletes can use to improve concentration on the field. One is to use simulations in practice. Some factors are not as present in the training environment as they are in competition. One thing you can do is simulation training. In these training sessions, the real competitive environment is simulated. This also serves as a mental preparation. Another technique is to use keywords. These are used to elicit a specific response and are a form of internal dialogue. The tips can also be used to change a movement pattern or to relax. Another technique is to use nonjudgmental thinking. When athletes have problems during a competition, they tend to see their behavior or themselves as bad. This can lead to anger and discouragement. That's why athletes don't have to think judgementally. Establishing routines is another technique. This can be useful in mental preparation for competitions. Routines can help structure the time before and between performances, allowing an athlete to focus mentally when it's time to perform. Some routines are superstitions, like wearing lucky shorts. Another technique is to develop competitive plans. Competition schedules help athletes prepare for their events and also prepare them for what they would do under different circumstances. Superlearning skills are another technique. Overtraining skills help make performing a skill automatic. This frees up attention to focus on other aspects of the environment.

Recent developments to improve athletes' concentration include eye scanners to track eye movements in different scenarios, virtual reality, video games, and eye training and concentration software. The latter helps athletes recognize advanced relevant cues in their sport.

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Chapter 17 - Mental Wellness and Exercise

Technological improvements have impacted the mental health and well-being of society. In the United States, anxiety disorders and depression are the most common illnesses and cost the public a lot of money. Many people treat mood disorders through counseling, drug therapy, or both. However, more and more people are looking to exercise to improve their mental well-being. Studies have found that physical activity increases well-being by reducing depression and anxiety. Increases general well-being.

Reduced anxiety and depression.

In relative terms, there are many people with mental health problems. Anxiety and depression are the mental health problems that receive the most attention. Many people have anxiety disorders and depression, but not all have psychopathological conditions. Many suffer from subjective stress. This is a broader category of uncomfortable emotions. Exercise has some therapeutic value for these people. Reduces feelings of depression and anxiety. Most of the studies on the relationship between physical activity and the reduction of anxiety and depression have been correlative and, therefore, it is incorrect to speak of causality. Instead, exercise seems to be associated with positive changes in moods and reductions in anxiety and depression. The effects of exercise on depression and anxiety can be acute or chronic. Acute effects are immediate and possibly transient, occurring after a single exercise session. Chronic effects focus on changes over time in both depression and anxiety. Most studies focus on acute (short-term) effects. Most studies have found acute and chronic effects of exercise in reducing anxiety. Although the acute effects last less than the chronic effects, they generally last longer than other forms of anxiety treatment, such as B. Silent Intervals. All exercise durations reduce anxiety, but greater effects are seen with longer periods of exercise. State anxiety returns to pre-exercise anxiety levels within 24 hours. The reduction in anxiety is not necessarily related to the physiological gains resulting from sparring practice. The reduction in post-exercise anxiety occurs regardless of the duration, type of exercise or intensity. Post-exercise anxiety reduction occurs in all types of participants (all genders, fit or not, healthy or unhealthy, young or old).

Depression is a source of human suffering and affects women more than men. Most of the time, depression is treated with prescription drugs or therapy, but exercise is also considered an effective alternative to alleviate depression. Physical inactivity is associated with higher levels of depression. In one study, some participants were assigned to a supervised aerobic exercise program, others to drug treatment, and a third group to a combination of exercise and drug treatment. The results showed that after 16 weeks, all three groups had reduced depressive symptoms and exercise was as effective as the other two treatments. The frequency of physical activity may also be important in relieving depressive symptoms. One study found that exercising three to five times a week led to a greater reduction in depression than exercising once a week. The positive effects of exercise on depression are evident in different age groups, health conditions, race, gender, and socioeconomic status. Although people report feeling better after exercising, 50% of people drop out of exercise programs and many more do not exercise at all. Further studies should focus on exercise adherence. The results showed that exercise is associated with a decrease in fatigue and anger and an increase in clear thinking, energy, and a greater sense of well-being. A variety of exercises help relieve anger, tension, and anxiety. One study also found that positive mood in the morning was associated with a greater likelihood of exercising, and as positive mood increased, both exercise initiation and intensity increased. Therefore, how a person feels is related to their propensity to exercise.

The effects of exercise on psychological well-being

The psychological benefits of exercise for children and young people are often overlooked. Increased exercise in this group is correlated with greater self-efficacy and perceived competence, greater achievement motivation, and less depression. The amount of exercise is related to perceived body attractiveness, physical self-esteem in adolescents, and the importance of appearance. Several theories have been proposed to explain how exercise increases well-being. However, there is no single hypothesis that is supported as the main mechanism that produces positive changes. Positive changes in mental well-being are likely due to an interplay of psychological and physiological mechanisms. Some physiological explanations are an increase in cerebral blood flow, a decrease in muscle tone, and structural changes in the brain. Some psychological explanations include a better sense of control, positive social interactions, and better self-esteem.

Change in personality and cognitive functions

Researchers also wonder if exercise can alter personality and mental performance. In a study of middle-aged men who participated in a fitness program, the men improved their fitness and reported dramatic psychological effects. They reported higher levels of self-confidence, a greater sense of self-sufficiency, and a greater sense of control. Many studies have shown positive changes in various aspects of personality adjustment. People believe that the physical changes resulting from fitness training can alter body image and therefore improve self-concept and self-esteem. Studies have also shown that women can improve their self-esteem and their perceptions of their fitness and body attractiveness through continued participation in physical activity. A strong self-concept is important for children's healthy development and psychological adjustment, and exercise can be an important part of keeping children and adults happy.

Resilience allows people to cope with stressful situations. It is a personality style. A person is resilient when they have the following three characteristics: a sense of involvement, purpose, and commitment in daily life, a sense of personal control over external events, and the flexibility to adapt to unexpected changes as perceived challenges. There are studies that have focused on how exercise and resistance together can reduce some of the negative effects of stress. One study showed that people who scored well on both resilience and exercise stayed healthier than those who scored well on only one component or the other. A robust personality and exercise combined are more effective in maintaining health than either alone.

cognitive function

Psychologists and neuroscientists agree that exercise is the best thing you can do for your brain. Cognitive decline is not inevitable. The volume of the brain decreases slightly, but the brain continues to build new neurons and neural connections throughout life. Aerobic exercise reduces the degree of brain loss and keeps cognitive abilities sharp. Statistical reviews of more than 100 studies showed that physical activity was slightly positively associated with improved cognitive function. Many studies have also found that aerobic physical activity has positive effects on cognition and brain function. It appears that central executive command (planning, multitasking, working memory, and programming) and ambiguity management are strongly influenced by aerobic exercise. Chronic training shows greater effects on cognitive performance compared to acute training. Moderate to vigorous physical activity has also been shown to improve executive functioning in children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

increased quality of life

The researchers also looked at how regular exercise affects people's quality of life. Quality of life is often considered as the perceived degree to which people are able to satisfy psychophysiological needs. The quality of work life was studied and it was found that a regular training program can increase the life satisfaction, self-esteem and job satisfaction of employees. Sleep quality is also important for quality of life. The positive effects of physical activity on quality of life fall into four categories: subjective well-being (personal pleasure and mood change), improved physical functioning, personal significance, and peak experience. Studies on the relationship between exercise and quality of life have shown us that exercise slightly increases total sleep time, physical activity helps us better manage stress and tension, and exercise programs contribute to quality of life. of a person's life, affecting perceived stress, satisfaction with life, and physical well-being. Health. Exercise can have a negative impact on quality of life when a person is used to overtraining, but most of the time it has positive impacts.

tall runner

Many regular athletes report that they feel better mentally, spiritually, and emotionally after a workout. This is so ubiquitous among runners that it has been dubbed "the runner's high." This runner's high includes feelings of alertness and awareness, raising the legs, a feeling of relief, a feeling of lightness, suppressed pain, and euphoria. A runner's high is a euphoric feeling during a run, where the runner feels a heightened sense of well-being, a greater appreciation of nature, and a transcendence of time and space. Studies have attempted to determine what conditions promote a runner's high. There are individual differences, but most runners report that a runner's high cannot be reliably predicted, but is instead aided by few distractions and cool, calm weather with low humidity. He requires long distances (6+ miles) and at least 30 minutes of running, regardless of pace and time. Preliminary studies show that the runner's high is linked to a chemical in the brain (associated with romantic love) that induces euphoria.

It is unfortunate that few psychologists use exercise as part of their interventions. Exercise therapy is known to provide physiological benefits in a variety of rehabilitation settings, but it also has benefits for mental health and well-being. Despite the benefits, exercise should not be used in all cases of depression and stress. Exercise should not be prescribed for people who are overweight, have severe heart disease, or have high blood pressure that cannot be controlled with medication. People who are severely depressed and have suicidal thoughts probably shouldn't get exercise therapy either. For the training to be effective, people must adhere to the program.

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Chapter 18 - Adherence and Behavioral Practice

Although there are more and more gyms these days and more and more stores that stock fitness equipment, most people do not exercise regularly. There are many people who are overweight and/or obese, and only 10-25% of adults in developed countries are active enough to maintain good muscular shape. 50% of people who start an exercise program quit after 6 months. As a society, people do not get enough exercise and this lack of physical activity can be attributed to certain individual differences. This is despite the psychological and physiological benefits of exercise. A small percentage of adults and children engage in regular physical activity.

reasons to train

To find out why people don't stick to exercise programs, you first need to understand why people exercise. People are motivated for different reasons. One of those reasons is weight control. Western society values ​​good looks, slimness, and fitness, so keeping fit is important to many people. However, many people are overweight. The first thing most people think of when faced with being overweight is diet. Dieting can help people lose weight, but exercise also plays an important and underappreciated role. Regular exercise not only improves weight control, but also eliminates physical inactivity as a risk factor. Sport to lose weight can be seen as a reason for self-expression for sport. This is because exercise leads to an improvement in physical appearance.

Another reason people start exercising is to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Regular exercise prevents or delays the onset of high blood pressure and lowers blood pressure in people with hypertension. Hypertension is an important risk factor in coronary artery disease. People also exercise to reduce stress and depression (see the previous chapter). People follow an exercise program for the joy and satisfaction it brings. Another reason to exercise is to increase self-esteem. The expected adult self is related to increases in physical activity behaviors. Simple things like taking a walk around the block make people feel good as they move toward their goals. Also, people who exercise regularly feel more confident with their appearance. Studies have shown that self-esteem is the best predictor of long-term adherence to therapy. People also start exercise programs to socialize and be with other people. They want to meet people and fight against social isolation.

Reasons not to train

Despite all the varied benefits of exercise, many people still choose not to exercise. They often cite lack of energy, lack of motivation, and lack of time as the main reasons for inactivity. These are all factors that humans can control, as opposed to environmental factors that are generally beyond human control. Older people cite more health reasons for not exercising than younger adults. Older adults also choose internal barriers (not being athletic) over situational barriers (not having energy) than younger adults. Females also select more internal barriers than males. Internal barriers are not easy to overcome, which makes it difficult for these people to adhere to training programs. Gender and age should be considered in any discussion of reasons for not exercising. Some of the main barriers for adolescents to participate in physical activities are other factors, such as lack of parental support, being female, and previous sedentary lifestyle. People also report that the reason they don't exercise is because they don't have the money or the inconvenience (lack of access to facilities). People often say that they don't have time to exercise, but this lack of time is more perception than reality. The problem is in the priorities. People somehow seem to find time to watch TV or hang out, but don't have time to exercise.

practice adherence problem

Once people get over the hurdle of starting to exercise, the next hurdle they will face is continuing their exercise program. About 50% of people drop out of exercise programs within the first 6 months. Relapses are not good. Studies have shown that participants who participated in an exercise program for one year experienced improvements in cognitive function, psychological well-being, and functional capacity compared to those who did not participate in an exercise program.

exercise behavior theories

(Video) Mental Imagery - Introduction to a Sport Psychological Technique

There are several models and theories of adherence to practice. The health belief model is a popular model associated with preventive health behaviors. This model asserts that the probability that a person will adopt preventive health behaviors depends on their perception of the severity of the possible illness and their evaluation of the benefits and costs of taking action. If someone believes that the potential illness is serious and that the benefits of taking action outweigh the disadvantages, they are likely to adopt the desired health behavior. The model had some success, but the results were mixed.

The theory of planned behavior is an extension of the theory of rational action. This last theory holds that intentions are the best predictors of actual behavior. Intentions are a person's attitudes toward a particular behavior. The theory of planned behavior holds that intentions cannot be the only predictors of behavior. According to this theory, perceived behavioral control influences behavioral outcomes in addition to subjective norms and attitudes. Sociocognitive theory suggests that personal, behavioral, and environmental factors act as determinants that interact with each other. The environment affects behavior and behavior affects the environment. Personal factors such as emotions and thoughts are also important. The most critical part is a person's belief that they can successfully perform a behavior (self-efficacy). Participation in training increases with increasing self-efficacy and vice versa. Self-determination theory (SDT) assumes that people are naturally motivated to feel connected to others in a social setting (relationship), to function effectively in that setting (efficacy), and to feel autonomous. Studies show that people who demonstrate autonomy in their exercise behaviors and have strong social support systems show higher motivation and loyalty to exercise.

All of the above models focus on a specific point in time. The transtheoretical model holds that human beings go through stages of change and that movement through these stages is cyclical, not linear. This is because people fail to establish and maintain lifestyle changes. According to this model, the information must be adapted to the particular phase in which a person is. The templates mentioned above were also not specifically designed for practice adherence. For this reason, the maintenance of physical activity model was developed. Predictors of maintaining physical activity according to this model are goal setting, self-efficacy, self-motivation, life stress, and physical activity environment. There are not many longitudinal studies looking at maintenance data. The new models are ecological models. These focus on explaining how environments and behaviors influence each other. Ecological refers to models or perspectives rather than a set of variables. A study used an ecological perspective to encourage physical activity among students of middle school and discovered that social environmental variables (support from teachers and colleagues) and physical environmental variables (equipment accessibility), together with self-efficacy, previously physical activity. Several models are presented below and (some) of these models combined with each other can provide the best prediction. Some models can be integrated.

Determinants of adherence to practice

The determinants of adherence fall into two categories: personal factors and environmental factors. The determinants of physical activity are not isolated variables. They influence and are influenced by each other. Studies have shown that adolescents have adherence factors similar to those of adults. There are three types of personal characteristics that can affect exercise adherence: cognitive variables, behavioral variables, and demographic variables. Education, income, and socioeconomic status are included in the category of demographic variables and are positively related to physical activity. Gender and age are also demographic variables, with men more likely to be physically active than women. Physical activity generally decreases with age. Of the cognitive variables, self-efficacy and self-motivation are the most consistent predictors of physical activity. Regarding behavioral factors, past participation in an exercise program is the most reliable predictor of current participation. Someone who has been active in an organized program for half a year is likely to be active a year later. Parental encouragement and parents encouraging children to engage in regular physical activity appear to be good predictors of physical activity in adulthood.

Environmental factors can hinder or encourage regular participation in physical activity. Environmental factors include the physical environment (weather, climate), the social environment (peers and parents), and the characteristics of physical activity (duration of exercise). Support from family and friends is social support. As mentioned earlier in this text, support from family and friends is associated with physical activity and adherence to exercise programs. Social support is also important in rehabilitation. Factors that fall under the category of physical environment are favorable location and climate. The closer a gym is to home, the more likely a person is to start and stick with a program. Activity levels are highest in summer and lowest in winter. The frequency, intensity, attitude, leadership qualities, and duration of an exercise all fall within the characteristics of physical activity. High-intensity exercise is more taxing on a person's system than low-intensity exercise, and this affects compliance. Studies show that people who exercised at high-intensity intervals experienced higher levels of happiness than people who exercised continuously at moderate levels. Studies show that group dynamic physical activity interventions were more effective than individually directed interventions. Probably because group programs offer social support, joy, the opportunity to compare progress with others, and a greater personal commitment to keep going. Of course, some people prefer to train alone for convenience. A leadership style that emphasizes being encouraging, interactive, energetic, and providing encouragement and feedback is the most fun for new learners. This will result in a higher membership rate and level of fun.

Strategies to increase adherence

Change programs should be as individualized as possible. Making individualized changes to improve exercise adherence can be classified into six categories of strategies: reinforcement approaches, behavior modification approaches, decision-making approaches, cognitive-behavioral approaches, intrinsic approaches, and social support approaches. Interventions can use a variety of these approaches to improve adherence. Behavior modification is the systematic and planned application of learning principles to modify behavior. Studies show that behavior modification approaches actually improve exercise adherence. If someone wants to encourage exercise until exercise is more intrinsically motivating, that person can provide clues that are eventually associated with exercise. Some interventions are based on this.

A notice is a suggestion that triggers a behavior. The indications can be physical, symbolic or verbal. You want to increase the signals of desired behavior and decrease the signals of competitive behavior. Examples of tips to improve training behavior are posters and posting training equipment in visible places. Signs and signs should be kept in view of professionals to encourage compliance. Removing a notice can negatively affect the sticking behavior.

Another way to change behavior is to hire. Participants can enter into a contract with the trainer. The contract establishes responsibilities and expectations. The contract should contain realistic goals, deadlines, and consequences for not meeting the goals. Studies have shown that people who sign such a contract receive far more visits than those who refuse to sign.

reinforcement approaches

Motivation can be increased through public assistance and motivation reports. This information can be converted into a graph. Charts keep people constantly informed, and increased cognitive awareness is often all it takes to achieve targeted behavior changes. When people know that their exercise logs are available for all to see, they are more likely to make an effort to maintain positive behavior. Self-control behavior is also an effective way to increase exercise adherence. Other methods include rewarding frequency and performance. Giving feedback on participants' progress can also increase adherence.

Cognitive-behavioral approaches

These approaches assume that internal events (thought) play an important role in behavior change. Goal setting is a useful technique for exercise behavior and adherence. Studies show that flexible goals set by the participants lead to better participation and retention than fixed goals set by the trainer. Setting intrinsic goals seems to be better. Thoughts or cognitions during exercise are important for adherence to an exercise program. When the focus is on the body's internal feedback (breathing), this is called association. When the focus is on the external environment (how beautiful the external world is), this is called dissociation. Research shows that dissociative participants were superior in maintaining movement over the long term compared to associative participants. Focusing on the environment rather than how you feel can improve exercise adherence because thinking about other things reduces fatigue and boredom.

Social support approaches

Social support refers to a person's positive attitude toward another person's participation in an exercise program. Social and family interactions can affect physical activity in many ways. Family, friends, and spouses can use verbal reminders to encourage exercise. Social support is positively related to adherence to exercise programs. Studies show that participants who received social support performed better than members of a control group.

intrinsic approaches

The most lasting motivation comes from within. People often start an exercise program for extrinsic reasons, but if people don't like the exercise program (intrinsically), they are likely to give up. There are certain ways to increase the joy of exercise. One is to focus on the experience itself. Many scholars say that people should not focus on external goals like losing weight, but focus more on the present moment. People should play sports for themselves and not for future gain. Without making the transition from extrinsic to intrinsic motivation, many people drop out of an exercise program or continue to switch programs. If people get the idea that exercise is meaningful and goal oriented for them, they are more likely to stick with the program.

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Chapter 19 - Psychology and Sports Injuries

Anyone who has had a sports-related injury will tell you that the injury experience involves both physical dysfunction and a host of psychological problems. Some injured athletes feel frustrated, isolated, anxious, and depressed. Athletes who are experiencing major stress or life changes and who do not have good coping strategies are more likely to be injured. Anyone who has recovered from a serious sports injury knows that issues like motivation and goal setting are part of a successful recovery and return to sport. An injury is a major life event and this life event occurs quite frequently.


In this text, the term "injury" means trauma to the body that results in temporary or sometimes permanent physical disability and inhibition of motor function. The injury is operationalized as participation under pain, such that the pain is associated with some form of loss of function that impairs performance, the pain requires mental attention during participation, and the injured person must decide whether to continue participating while experiencing pain . Therefore, injury is not the same as discomfort.


Injuries are often physical in nature. However, there are other factors that go into why artists get injured and how well and how quickly they recover. Physical, psychological, social and personality factors influence injuries and stress plays an important role. Physical factors such as overtraining, muscle imbalance, and physical fatigue are the main causes of training injuries. But psychological factors also play a role. Psychological factors also play a key role in injury rehabilitation. Therefore, it is important for fitness professionals to understand psychological responses to injury and how mental strategies can facilitate recovery.

Social reasons are sometimes also causes of sports injuries. One factor is the perception by athletes that playing through pain is a big part of our society. People seem to endure pain to achieve their goals, like running a marathon. In the past, playing with pain was a typically male phenomenon, as exercise was traditionally viewed as a male activity. Today, however, there are many athletes who are serious about continuing to play despite their injuries.

A stressful sports situation can contribute to injuries. This situation can increase the state of anxiety, leading to changes in concentration and muscle tension. This results in an increase in lesion change. A history of stressors and coping resources influence the stress process and this, in turn, influences the likelihood of injury. People who develop psychological skills cope better with stress, and this reduces the likelihood of getting hurt.

To date, research has not been able to identify or measure the unique personality traits associated with sports injuries. Stress levels have been identified as important precursors of sports injuries. Studies have examined the relationship between injury rates and life stress. Measurements of these stresses are related to major life changes, such as the loss of a loved one or a change in the economic situation. Studies show that athletes with higher stress levels sustain more injuries than those with lower stress levels. It also shows that people with little social support and a lot of life stress are at higher risk of sports injuries. Studies show that athletes at high risk of injury sustained fewer injuries after stress management training interventions than at-risk athletes who did not participate in stress management training. The biggest stressors during an injury are psychological, such as fear or re-injury, broken dreams, and watching others act, and social, such as inattention and isolation. Other sources of stress include rehabilitation difficulties, career concerns, financial difficulties, and a sense of missed opportunity. Teaching these athletes stress management techniques can help them work more efficiently and reduce the risk of injury.

Links Between Stress and Injury

There are two main theories that help explain the relationship between stress and injury. One of those theories is about attention deficit disorders. This view holds that stress disrupts an athlete's attention, reducing peripheral attention. When athletes are less stressed, their peripheral attention is greater. The increased state of anxiety also causes distraction and irrelevant thoughts. The other theory deals with increased muscle tension. High stress levels can create muscle tension that affects normal coordination and this increases the risk of injury. Increased stress can also lead to general fatigue, coordination problems, and reduced flexibility.

Psychologically based explanations for injuries.

In addition to stress, there are also certain attitudes that make players vulnerable to injury. Slogans promoted by coaches such as "No Pain, No Gain" and "Have a go or go home" can encourage athletes to play injured. Therefore, coaches must also emphasize the need to recognize and accept injuries. Athletes may believe they need to train in pain, which can lead to overuse. Intense physical training is associated with discomfort, but athletes must be taught to distinguish normal discomfort associated with overuse. People can feel worthless when they get hurt. Coaches may consciously or unconsciously convey that winning is more important than the well-being of the athlete. Athletes want to feel worthy.

The risk of injury increases the more strictly a culture defines success in terms of win-loss records and prioritizes external forms of success over intrinsic performance. It seems that athletes who play with injuries are valued more by coaches and teammates and this increases the pressure of playing with injuries.

Psychological reactions to sports injuries

Even with the best exercise programs, people can get hurt. Therefore, it is important to understand the psychological responses to activity injuries. Many different reactions can occur, but some are more common than others. At the beginning of this research, sports psychologists thought that injured athletes followed a five-step grief response process: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. However, there is evidence that although people show many of these emotions, they do not follow a set pattern or feel all emotions in these five stages. People can be in several stages at the same time or return to an earlier stage. People can expect injured people to display three general categories of responses: processing of injury-related information (with an emphasis on pain-related information), emotional agitation and reactive behavior, and positive attitude and coping. Most athletes follow these patterns, but the speed and ease with which they progress can vary. There are other psychological responses to injury as well. Some of these are loss of identity, lack of self-confidence, and fear and anxiety.

People often process their reactions to injuries. They show some negative emotions but don't have much trouble dealing with them. There are certain warning signs of maladjustment to sports injuries. Some of these include feelings of anger, denial, minor physical discomfort, rapid mood swings, and withdrawal from significant others. A coach who observes someone with these symptoms needs to discuss the situation with a sports medicine specialist and/or sports psychologist.

Sport and Recreation Psychology

Psychology can help with the recovery process. Many studies have shown that psychological interventions positively affect recovery from sports injuries, coping, mood, and self-confidence. Studies have looked at the difference between injured athletes who managed their injury well and injured athletes who did not manage their injury well. There were differences between these two: athletes who were adapting better adhered better to the treatment program, were more motivated and determined, showed more positivity about their injury status, and were better informed about their injuries. Injury treatment should include psychological techniques to enhance healing. In the early stages of an injury, it is best to focus on helping the athlete deal with the emotional turmoil that accompanies the onset of an injury. During rehabilitation, the physician must focus on helping the athlete stay motivated and adhere to rehabilitation protocols.

Identification of athletes at risk

Studies have shown that athletes can be identified as being at the highest risk for sports injuries. They are characterized by combinations of high life stress, high trait anxiety, low psychological and coping skills, high avoidant coping, and low social support. People need to show empathy for injured athletes. You have to be there for a hurt person. A psychologist or coach should educate the injured person about the injury and the recovery process. She must tell the athlete how long the injury will last and how long it will take for the athlete's injury to heal. A sports psychologist should also teach the athlete psychological coping skills, such as positive self-talk, goal setting, imagery, and relaxation. A psychologist must also teach the athlete how to deal with setbacks. Injury rehabilitation is not a precise science and the athlete must learn to deal with setbacks. Coaches and teammates need to show their social support.

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Chapter 20 - Addictive Behaviors and Unhealthy Behaviors

There have been many cases of popular athletes taking steroids (Lance Armstrong) or suffering from alcoholism. Addictive and unhealthy behaviors are not limited to elite athletes. High school students and young athletes also abuse drugs, alcohol, and steroids. Substance abuse, gambling addiction, and eating disorders are clinical problems that require specialized treatment. Non-specialists should learn the signs to recognize these conditions and refer affected students to a specialist.

eating disorder

The two most common eating disorders are anorexia nervosa and bulimia. Anorexia nervosa has the following characteristics: intense fear of gaining weight, disturbance in testing one's own body weight, refusal to maintain a normal minimum body weight for a given height and age, and, in women, the absence of at least three cycles consecutive menstrual periods. . Anorexia can be deadly. It can lead to starvation and even heart disease. Those affected do not see themselves as notable. Cognitive, psychological, biological, and perceptual factors in anorexia can interact in different combinations to produce different types of disorders. Diagnostic criteria for bulimia are recurrent binge eating episodes, a feeling of lack of control over eating behavior during binge eating, at least two binge eating episodes per week for at least 3 months, regular self-induced vomiting or laxative use, and a history of binge eating Excessive concern with body shape and weight. Someone with bulimia is often depressed by low self-esteem and overeats to feel better, then feels guilty about the food, and then vomits or uses laxatives to get rid of the food. Bulimia is generally less severe than anorexia. People with bulimia know they have a problem, people with anorexia don't. Bulimia can lead to anorexia.

Disordered eating behavior describes a full spectrum of overeating habits that are associated with increased health risks. The extremes of this disorder are anorexia and bulimia. Much of the middle ground is taken up by eating problems that are not severe enough to meet the DSM criteria for anorexia or bulimia. Studies have shown that it is often difficult to distinguish athletes with an eating disorder from those who have many of the psychological symptoms of an eating disorder but without an official diagnosis of an eating disorder.

There are several reasons why it is difficult to accurately assess eating disorders in a given population. On the one hand, athletes with these types of disorders are often reserved and reluctant to share information about themselves until the problem becomes extremely catastrophic. Female athletes report eating disorders more frequently than male athletes. Sports that emphasize leanness (gymnastics) have a higher risk of developing eating disorders.

predisposing factors

Knowing the predisposing factors for an eating disorder can help someone prevent or reduce the chances of someone developing an eating disorder. Some sports, such as wrestling and powerlifting, use weight classifications to divide groups of competitors. Often athletes attempt to compete in a lower weight class and this can result in an athlete attempting to lose 10 or even 15 pounds immediately prior to weigh-in. This usually leads to rapid dehydration. Some techniques to achieve this weight loss include fasting, urination, and the use of laxatives. Trainers should discourage these weight loss methods. Unfortunately, coaches sometimes pressure athletes to lose weight. Studies have shown that athletes who received derogatory comments about their bodies from coaches had more disordered eating habits than those who did not receive such comments. Peer pressure can also "force" someone into having an eating disorder. Eating disorders may also have something to do with the cultural emphasis on thinness. Western culture values ​​thinness. We are constantly told by the media that we should look skinny like models. Men also want to change their bodies. They report fewer body image disturbances than women, but are sometimes prone to risky behaviors, such as the illegal use of steroids to gain mass. Some well built men think they are not tall. When you look in the mirror, you see a skinny person. This is called vigorexia. Other predisposing factors are performance requirements and evaluation criteria. Studies have shown that athletes who recalled more critical comments than others reported greater eating disorders and more intense negative emotions. Women at the highest level of competition were more likely to remember critical comments than athletes at lower levels of competition. Investigators need to examine the interplay of biological and sociocultural factors in the prediction of eating disorders.

Some factors are directly related to the development of exercise eating disorders, but this association is mediated by several factors. For example, the submissive and compliant personality factors have been associated with eating disorders in athletes. Coaches need to pay more attention to athletes with this type of personality. Nationality may also be a mediating factor in the development of an eating disorder. Research needs to focus more on ethnicity and culture.

recognition and recommendation

Professionals are in an excellent position to identify people with eating disorders. Unusual eating habits are often the best indicators of trouble. People with anorexia tend to snack, lie about food, move it around, and engage in ritual eating habits. People with bulimia often hide food and disappear (to empty themselves) after eating. Other signs to look out for include mood and personality changes, a strong need for control, and atypical behaviors. When a coach identifies someone who has symptoms of an eating disorder, she should seek the help of an expert familiar with eating disorders. Coaches must talk to the athlete, provide support and keep information confidential. She must make a referral to a specific clinic or person. She emphasizes emotions, not eating disorders.

substance abuse

It is well known that high-level athletes and Olympic athletes have used performance-enhancing drugs for decades. Despite warnings about the negative physiological and psychological effects of steroids and other performance-enhancing drugs, their use appears to be increasing. Studies have shown that athletes seem to prioritize performance results over health issues. Fortunately, not all drugs are bad or out of place in sports. Antibiotics and painkillers are necessary in our lives. Drugs are not the problem if they are legal, prescribed by proper medical professionals and not prohibited in the world of sports. This last point can be difficult, since some drugs are legal in some sports but illegal in others. Drug abuse and the use of illegal drugs are the real problems in sports and exercise. People abuse drugs for different reasons, but all of these reasons have the same negative consequences. Some of these are long-term or even life-threatening health and mental health issues, such as addiction. Substance abuse is the continued use of a substance despite knowledge of a social, psychological, physical, or occupational problem caused or aggravated by use of the substance and/or repeated use of the substance in situations where use it is physically dangerous. Substance abuse occurs when the symptoms of the disorder last for at least 1 month.

Prevalence of substance abuse

Due to the personal nature of the problem, it is difficult to get an accurate picture of substance abuse. The prevalence information we have is generally self-reported, and estimates of use vary between 10% and 90%. Therefore, the data must be treated with caution. Some potential side effects of steroid use include acne, loss of libido, testicular shrinkage, high blood pressure, impaired liver function, and increased aggression. One study showed that people taking drugs to enhance performance or appearance are at higher risk when they diet and exercise and when they practice strict practices. Most of the studies that examine us in athletes focus on alcohol and steroid use. Studies show that student athletes are a high-risk group for binge drinking. Team attraction is also a good indicator of substance use. Alcohol use was higher, but marijuana use was lower as team attraction increased. This is especially true for men. Men also seem to use anabolic steroids more often than women. The use of performance-enhancing drugs has called into question whether it is a player's natural abilities or the addition of drugs that lead to exceptional performance. Many wonder if Lance Armstrong would have won the Tour de France without substances.

Why do athletes use drugs?

Athletes don't start abusing drugs. They start taking them for seemingly good reasons. The reasons can be divided into three categories: social, physical and psychological. The most common physical reasons for taking drugs are to look more attractive, to improve performance, to control pain, and to control weight. Winning matters, and athletes want to do whatever it takes to improve their performance. Performance-enhancing drugs carry health risks, and the use of these drugs is a scam. The psychological reasons are the inconveniences caused by unpleasant emotions and stress management. Other reasons are to build self-confidence. In addition, intrinsically motivated people use fewer performance-enhancing substances than extrinsically motivated people. Social reasons for taking performance-enhancing drugs include the need to gain group acceptance and peer pressure. In addition, many drug addicts appear in the media, and young people who admire them may think that you have to use drugs to be successful in sports.

Drug categories and their effects.

In sports, drugs are classified according to their purpose: recreational or street drugs and performance-enhancing drugs. Performance-enhancing drugs include beta blockers, strength enhancers, nerve depressants, pain blockers, and anabolic steroids. Stimulants increase alertness, but some of their side effects include heart and mental health problems. Anabolic steroids are used to increase strength and stamina, but some of the side effects include an increased risk of liver disease and the development of masculine characteristics in women. Beta blockers are used to stabilize the nerves, but some of the side effects include a slow heartbeat, depression, and low blood pressure. Recreational drugs (street drugs) are substances that people seek for personal pleasure. They are often used to mingle with friends, relieve pressure, and build excitement.

Substance Abuse Screening

Formal (drug testing) and informal (listening and watching) processes are used to detect substance use and abuse. Unfortunately, a real drug test is very expensive. Only trained professionals work in drug treatment programs, but sports personnel play an important role in drug detection and prevention. There are certain signs that characterize who is addicted to drugs. Some of these are changes in behavior, personality, peer group, impaired judgment, poor coordination and hygiene, muscle tremors, and profuse sweating.

A model developed to detect substance abuse uses deterrence theory to help understand the process people go through when deciding whether or not to use drugs. The Sports Drug Decision Model (DSDM) consists of three main components. These three are the costs of making a consumption decision, the benefits associated with consumption, and the specific situational factors that can affect the cost-benefit analysis of consumption. People use a cost-benefit analysis of the consequences of breaking the law before deciding to break bass. Some of the costs are legal penalties (imprisonment, suspensions), social penalties (disapproval, criticism), health problems (side effects), and self-imposed penalties (guilt, low self-esteem). Some of the benefits are material (cash prizes), social (fame) and internal (happiness). There are also some situational variables. Some of these are professional status, experience with punishment and avoidance of punishment, type of drug, and perceived legitimacy of authority. Studies suggest that a person's sense of morality is a powerful deterrent. The deeper a belief is ingrained and the earlier it takes root in life, the more likely a person is to hold on to that belief. Therefore, it is best to tell young athletes that the use of performance-enhancing drugs is unfair.

prevention and control

Substance abuse is a clinical matter and athletic personnel will not participate in drug treatment programs. There are some things that can be done to prevent or reduce the likelihood of drug use. Sports personnel need to create a supportive environment that addresses the reasons for drug use. It is necessary to strengthen the self-esteem of athletes, because people who feel good consume less drugs. Athletes also need to be educated about the effects of drug use. It must be informative and accurate about the negative and positive effects of drug use. Athletes also need good role models. They also need to learn coping skills to deal with anxiety and stress.

looking for exercise

Another type of addiction is exercise addiction. Intense preoccupation with physical activity is described in terms such as compulsion, obsession, dependency, and addiction. This intense involvement is often associated with running. Psychologists often use the term addiction.

Exercise addiction is a psychological or physiological dependence on a regular exercise program. It is characterized by withdrawal symptoms after 24 to 36 hours of inactivity. Some withdrawal symptoms include irritability, muscle spasms, anxiety, nervousness, and a feeling of fullness. This only occurs when a person is prevented from exercising for whatever reason and doesn't just consciously take a day off.

Positive exercise addiction promotes psychological strength and increases life satisfaction. People with positive dependence on physical activity can successfully integrate their physical activity into other aspects of their lives. Exercise can become a habit of daily activity, and that level of commitment is a healthy habit. Many athletes develop a positive addiction to their workouts, but there are also people who let exercise rule their lives. When this occurs, the person has a negative addiction to exercise. Your life will be structured around movement and other commitments (home and work) will suffer. This condition is a personal incompatibility. Many addicted athletes recognize their symptoms as a negative addiction. However, they still feel that exercise improves their existence. A distinction is made between primary and secondary stress dependence. In primary exercise dependence, exercise is an end in itself, but it may also include changes in eating habits to improve performance. In secondary stress addiction, stress is a symptom of another primary pathological condition, such as an eating disorder. The criteria for diagnosing an exercise addict include three or more symptoms within a 12-month period. Some of the symptoms are: needing more exercise, loss of control, spending more and more time exercising, withdrawal symptoms, continuing to exercise despite awareness of problems and conflicts as exercise takes precedence over other activities . One study found that if a person tries to use exercise as a way to boost self-esteem, they may become addicted to exercise. Another study found that sports addiction was linked to alcohol-related problems in college students. Exercise addiction appears to be related to inappropriate behavior.

When an addicted athlete is injured and unable to train, they experience withdrawal symptoms. These include depression, restlessness, tension, guilt, and interpersonal problems. These withdrawal symptoms resemble the withdrawal symptoms of other addictions. Some say that people can try other activities while dealing with an injury. A true addict will not be satisfied with this solution. Some things a trainee can do to protect themselves from falling into the negative addiction trap are scheduling rest days, training with a slower partner, stopping training when injured, and setting realistic short- and long-term goals.

gambling addiction

Compulsive gambling is only now attracting media attention in the sporting environment. However, there were many cases where athletes bet on their own games or were bribed to lose or control the distribution of points. Athletes can also help bookies because they can't pay the game bill. Sports betting is booming in the United States. It is believed that 1.5% of the US population are compulsive gamblers and 6-8% of US college students are compulsive gamblers. The game does not start in college. High school students also play. In one survey, 26% of male athletes said they started playing before high school and 66% said they started in high school. It turns out that parents generally don't see teen gambling as a serious problem. However, they are often wrong when they think so.

Addicted gamers have certain characteristics, such as arrogance, extreme competitiveness, ostentation, and boundless optimism. They are usually quite intelligent. Experts say that it is impossible to pick a player from a raven because they are experts in denial. Compulsive gambling is only noticed when it has negative consequences. There are certain signs of a gambling problem in college students. Some of them skip classes due to gambling, buy a book on how to be a good gambler, have trouble concentrating during lectures due to gambling thoughts, and have more financial debts than they can pay off. Parents can also look for some symptoms in their children. Some of these are an unexplained need for money, flaunting unexplained wealth, sudden drop in grades, increased credit card debt, estrangement from family, increased sports on TV, and missing belongings. home value.

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Chapter 21 - Overtraining and exhaustion

In recent years, the pressure on athletes to win and train hard all year long has increased. This is partly due to the huge financial rewards and status it brings. There were separate seasons and off-seasons for different sports, but now one season flows into the next. There is not enough time for a long rest. In the off-season, athletes also engage in physical activities to stay in shape and get stronger for the upcoming season. The price of total focus on training and winning can be overtraining and subsequent exhaustion. Not only competitive athletes overdo it, but so do "normal" athletes in their quest to feel and look their best. Coaches can also get caught up in the pressure to win, which can lead to increased stress and possible burnout. Burnout and overtraining have become major issues in the sports world, and coaches and health professionals need to better understand the symptoms and causes of burnout. You also need to learn strategies that will help reduce the likelihood of burnout.

Overtraining, stagnation and burnout

Periodized training is a deliberate strategy to subject athletes to high intensity training loads followed by lower training loads. This last part is known as the rejuvenation or rest phase. The goal of this type of training is to condition athletes so that their performance peaks at a specific time. Coaches intentionally overload and rejuvenate athletes. They try to increase the training load slowly so that optimal adjustments occur and no negative side effects occur. Overtraining is a short training cycle during which athletes are subjected to excessive training loads that are near or at maximum capacity. The overload of athletes is considered normal in a training process. Coaches want their athletes to experience a higher volume of training during the overload and they want their bodies to adjust after rest. However, the overloading process is not perfect, and sometimes overloading can have negative consequences. If there is a lack of rest or if the training volume is too high, maladaptation occurs and overtraining leads to loss of performance. The difference between periodized training and overtraining comes down to individual differences. Overtraining (harmful) for one athlete can be positive training for another.

Stagnant is a physiological condition of overtraining that manifests itself in a decrease in athletic preparation. Plateau is the end result or the result of overtraining when the athlete has difficulty maintaining standard training programs and cannot match previous performance results. Obsolete athletes have a significant decrease in performance for a prolonged period (more than 2 weeks) that occurs after a period of overtraining. The main behavioral sign of old age is impaired performance, and the main psychological symptoms are mood disorders and increased cognitive effort during exercise. Studies have shown that about 80% of outdated athletes are clinically depressed.

Burnout has received a lot of attention. However, there is no universally accepted definition of burnout. Essentially, burnout can be viewed as an emotional, social, and physical withdrawal from a previously enjoyed sporting activity. Abstinence is characterized by physical and mental exhaustion and the devaluation of the sport. Burnout occurs as a result of chronic stress and changes in athletes' motivational orientations. Another characteristic of burnout is feelings of low personal accomplishment, failure, depression, and low self-esteem. Once a person burns out, they are likely to withdraw from the sporting environment.


There are no large-scale systematic studies on the epidemiology of aging, overtraining, and burnout. However, there have been studies on the subject, so we know quite a bit. 66% of collegiate college athletes believed they were training too much and half of them reported it was a bad experience. Nearly half of those surveyed in one study said they felt burned out at some point during their college career. Studies have shown that aging is a problem for 34% of adolescent swimmers from different cultures. Studies on the frequency of burnout among teachers and coaches are scarce.

depletion model

The researchers developed six sports-specific models of exhaustion. All models are scientifically supported and should be taken into account when considering the depletion process.

Cognitive-affective stress model

This model has four stages. In this model, burnout is a process with physiological, behavioral, and psychological components that progress in predictable stages. Each of these components is influenced by motivation and personality. The first stage is the situational requirements phase, in which high demands are placed on the athlete. Stress can occur when the demands of a situation exceed the potential resources. This can lead to burnout. The second phase is the cognitive evaluation phase and it is in this phase that people interpret and evaluate the situation. The third stage is the stage of physiological reactions. When someone perceives a situation as harmful, over time (when the perception of it becomes chronic), stress can cause physiological changes, such as increased fatigue and tension. The last phase is the phase of behavioral responses. At this stage, the physiological response leads to certain types of coping, such as reduced performance or interpersonal difficulties.

Negative Training Stress Response Model

This model focuses more on responses to physical exercise, but recognizes the importance of psychological factors. This model establishes that physical training exerts physical and psychological pressure on the athlete and can have both positive and negative effects. Positive fit is desirable, of course, but too much training can lead to negative fit. Negative adaptation leads to negative training reactions, such as overtraining and stagnation. This leads to burnout. Physical training is involved in the burnout process and this model seems to be based on it. However, the intensity of training must be considered, as well as a variety of psychological and recovery stressors.

One-Dimensional Identity Development and External Control Model

This model claims that stress is simply a symptom of exhaustion. This model postulates that the root cause of burnout is related to the social organization of elite sport and its impact on identity and control. According to the model, burnout occurs because the structure of high performance sport does not allow young athletes to develop a normal identity. They cannot spend enough time with their peers outside of the sports environment. This means that young athletes identify almost exclusively with sporting success. So if they have an injury, the stress that comes with it can lead to burnout. The social worlds of competitive young athletes are organized by coaches and parents, and the athletes themselves cannot make decisions. This leads to stress and potential burnout.

Commitment theory and cheating

Some researchers argue that people get involved in sports for three reasons: because they want to participate, because they feel they need to participate, or both. They argue that burnout-prone athletes feel trapped in the sport when they don't really want to participate but feel they need to keep going. Many studies have shown that due to peer pressure, people can stay in a sport even if they no longer enjoy it. These results support the cheating theory and suggest that coaches and parents need to ensure that athletes enjoy their participation and do not put pressure on them.

self determination theory

Self-determination theory has also been applied to sports exhaustion. This has been the most widely used approach to investigate burnout in recent years. According to self-determination theory, people have three basic psychological needs: autonomy, connectedness, and competence. People who do not have these basic needs met are more prone to burnout. Many studies have supported this theory.

The integrated athlete burnout model integrates the previous models mentioned.

Factors that lead to burnout and overtraining

Some athletes start training and/or playing sports very early. Training in most sports involves year-round training, with the off-season periods getting shorter and shorter. For certain sports, special training camps and gyms have been developed, where young athletes live, go to school and train. Time away from home can be a heavy burden for young athletes. They usually cannot have a normal family and home life. Due to these mental and physical demands, they can burn out. Many studies have linked non-exercising stress with the appearance of overtraining. If people can monitor these sources of stress and how they affect athletes, they can prevent overtraining in athletes. There are many factors that lead to burnout (although some research has been done on athletes with low to moderate levels of burnout), and some of them are lack of free time to spend with significant others, parental pressure, support social, athlete autonomy and a lack of hope. There seems to be a load of sociopsychological exhaustion and a physical load.

Symptoms of burnout and overtraining

Burnout and overtraining are both mental and physical. Some symptoms of overtraining are physical exhaustion, depression, listlessness, difficulty sleeping, listlessness, loss of appetite, weak immune system, and poor performance. Some symptoms of burnout include loss of interest, mental and physical exhaustion, depression, difficulty concentrating, low self-esteem, emotional withdrawal, and increased anxiety.


Overtraining affects athletic performance and mental health. Studies have found that the harder the exercise, the greater the mood disturbance. Mood disorder includes increased depression, fatigue, and anger. A reduction in training load was associated with an improvement in mood. The psychological mood profile of successful and unsuccessful athletes differs. High-level competitive athletes had an iceberg profile. This profile shows that, relative to the population average, the most successful athletes tend to score higher on energy and lower on fatigue, confusion, anxiety, and depression. Overtrained athletes exhibit a reverse iceberg profile: they have increased anger, confusion, tension, depression and fatigue, and decreased strength.

measure exhaustion

The best way to study burnout would be to find people who leave the sport due to burnout and compare them to people who are currently in the sport but don't feel burned out. However, these people are hard to find, and many burnt-out athletes stay in the sport for reasons of pressure, money, or prestige. Therefore, the researchers developed a paper-and-pencil test method to measure burnout. The most widely used and developed is the Maslach Burnout Inventory. This measures the perceived frequency and intensity of feelings of exhaustion. Three components of burnout are measured: emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and low sense of personal accomplishment.

Burnout in professional athletes

High school or college athletic trainers are responsible for multiple teams and work most of the day on the field or in the practice room. Sometimes coaches put pressure on coaches, which leads to additional stress. Coaches reported that it is difficult to spend enough time with people because they have so many teams. This can lead to burnout. Studies also show that coaches are more likely to feel burnt out when their different roles blur. Fear of failure is the strongest predictor of burnout among sports managers. Employees with role conflicts also have higher levels of perceived burnout. Studies show that trainer burnout stems from issues that arise both at home and at work. Coaches who lacked the tools to facilitate recovery and who struggled to cope with the high performance demands of elite sport were vulnerable to burnout. Female trainers have more burnout than male trainers. Probably because they are expected to not only train but also feed their athletes. Younger, less experienced coaches also tend to have higher levels of perceived burnout than older coaches. In addition, coaches with a supportive (people-concerned) leadership style have a higher level of perceived burnout than coaches with a proactive (goal-oriented) leadership style. Perhaps it's because coaches who develop closer relationships with their athletes experience more burnout because they care more about their athletes. Studies have also found that coaches with higher levels of entrapment report significantly higher levels of emotional exhaustion. These trainers also showed less participation in training. Studies also show that coaches who report higher levels of social support experience less stress and burnout.


Some treatment suggestions are monitoring critical conditions in athletes, communicating, setting short-term goals, taking time to relax, learning self-regulation skills, maintaining a positive attitude, staying in good physical condition, and managing emotions after competitions.

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Chapter 22 - Child and Sports Psychology

There are many children who play sports. What motivates these children and is competitive sport too exhausting for them? Adolescents form the largest group of sports practitioners. Many dedicated sports psychologists have spent their careers studying the psychological problems of childhood physical activity. Participation in sport represents 66% of all extracurricular activities for young people. Many children are intensely involved in organized sports. Sport can have major consequences for them, their families and the community. The peak of physical activity occurs around the age of 12. This is the crucial age for certain stages of the child's life, being a critical period for important impacts on her self-esteem and social development. Youth sports experience can have important lifelong implications for children's personality and psychological development. Youth sports are popular because people feel that young people gain psychological and social values ​​from participating. However, participation in organized sports is not always automatically beneficial to the child. The benefits do not come from mere participation. Children need competent leaders who can positively influence them.

Most children report that they play sports for fun. Other reasons children give are to do something they are good at, improve their skills, get fit, go out with friends, make new friends, and compete. There are some cultural and gender differences as to why young people participate. Boys are motivated by the competitive aspects of the sport and girls are more attracted to the social opportunities. There are more differences within these groups than between them.

Children's participation in sport peaks between the ages of 10 and 13 and steadily declines up to the age of 18. Only a relatively small percentage of youth continue to participate in organized sport. In the United States, out of 10 kids who play a seasonal sport, 3-4 will drop out at the start of the next season. Children often report dropping out of school because they have other things to do and because of a change in interest. Other reasons given by children are wanting to play another sport, not liking pressure, boredom, not liking the coach and not having enough enthusiasm. Coaches and teammates are the most influential groups in a young athlete's decision to quit smoking. For women, lack of team skills, concerns about lack of skills, and problems with team participation are more important reasons for dropping out than for men.

Sometimes the reasons teens give for quitting are their surface reactions rather than the underlying reasons some sports psychologists look for. Children who drop out of school often have low perceived competence, experience stress, tend to focus on outcome goals, and demonstrate self-directed forms of motivation. One task of the coaches should be to find ways to improve children's self-awareness. Sports officials often want to know if children drop out of sports for specific reasons (to play other sports) or if they drop out altogether (general sports dropout). Studies show that most young children have multiple reasons for participating, and most of these motivations are intrinsic. Underlying the descriptive reasons for withdrawing from exercise is the child's need to feel competent and worthy. When the focus is on individual goal setting, children are not only focused on the results of the competition and are more likely to feel competent. Sports leaders should ask children who want to quit smoking why they do so. If a kid switches to another sport, it's not a big deal, but if a kid drops out of all sports, that's a bit concerning.

friends paper

Membership motives are one of the most important reasons why children participate in sport. Sport can provide opportunities to be with friends and make new friends. Friends and peers can also have other important impacts on young athletes. Peer relationships are linked to a child's sense of acceptance, motivation, and self-esteem. Relationships with peers in sport can have both positive and negative dimensions. Some of the positive dimensions are camaraderie, increased self-esteem, enjoyable play, helpfulness, loyalty, intimacy, and lack of conflict. Some of the negative aspects are cheating, unattractive personal traits (friends can be self-centered), and conflicts (insults). Peer relationships in sports generally have a positive effect on the child and are often associated with longer participation in sports. Coaches and parents should encourage positive reinforcement among peers. Children must be taught to respect others and to refrain from verbal abuse and bullying.

Stress and exhaustion in children

Burnout and stress are highly controversial topics in competitive children's sports. Competitive sport can overwhelm young people and they can suffer burnout as a result, critics say. Proponents say that young athletes do not experience undue competition and that competition teaches young people coping skills and these can be used in other aspects of life. Studies show that most young athletes do not experience excessive levels of anxiety when competing. Compared to kids who take high school exams, play in a band, or take physical education classes, kids who participate in competitive sports are no more anxious than others. Children appear to have slightly increased trait fears. Studies have looked at whether exercise can mitigate the effects of social anxiety. The results showed that children who participated in team sports had fewer symptoms of social anxiety. Participating in team sports can be valuable in helping children overcome social anxiety.

Most children who play sports do not experience excessive levels of state anxiety, but stress can be a problem for some children in certain situations. For this reason, sports psychologists are investigating what situational and personal factors are associated with an increased state of anxiety. They do this by measuring various measures of personality and background and by measuring state anxiety ratings before and after the competitions. Some of the situations that can increase stress are loss, the importance of events and sports (children in individual sports have more state of anxiety than children in team sports). Leaders need to understand the personalities of children who are at risk of experiencing high levels of competitive stress and the situations that are most likely to lead to increased anxiety. Burnout is a growing problem in children's competitive sports. It occurs when children lose interest too early due to their specialization in a particular sport and practice many hours under great pressure for several years. Some children start playing as young as 4 years old and others reach a world-class level in their teens. If performance drops prematurely, burnout is suspected. Burnout is like a case of exercise withdrawal, when a teenager stops exercising in response to long-term stress. The activity stops being fun because of the stress it causes and alters the motivation of the children. Young athletes who burn out have limited control over their own destiny, both inside and outside of sport. The parents of these children made the decisions about sporting life and the children had little or no influence. Having someone else control your own destiny often leads to decreased intrinsic motivation.

Adults need to help children who are stressed or at high risk for stress. Adults must create a positive environment. Stress can be alleviated by reducing the importance of winning. Adapted forms of anxiety reduction techniques (breath control, muscle relaxation, and mind training) can be used with children. Adults need to use fun, simple, and concrete strategies with children. You must remain positive and optimistic about the children.

Effective training practice

Training practices designed for elite adult athletes are often inappropriate for the development of young athletes. There are other coaching practices that are more effective with young people. Studies show that coaches who gave technical instructions were rated more positively than those who used general communication. Trainers who used more error-related and tutoring techniques also scored higher. Kids like their coaches and teammates better when they have more encouraging coaches to support them. These children also showed greater positive changes in self-esteem. Coaches can learn these positive behaviors. In addition to being positive, feedback from trainers must also be candid to be effective. Learning a positive approach to training leads to lower dropout rates.

parent role

There are many reports of parents pushing their children on the field and/or the gym. One study found that 3 out of 10 parents do things that hinder their child's development. Parents often play an important role as socializers, providers, and role models in their children's sports experience. Studies have shown that parents' enjoyment of physical activity leads parents to encourage their children's participation. The stimulus, in turn, influences the child's perceived competence and actual engagement. Other studies have shown that the pressures perceived by young athletes are related to the governance and control of parental behavior. Why do some parents misbehave? In our society, the success of parents is tied to the achievements and successes of their children. Sport is a measure of success and that is why parents invest a lot of money and time in their little athletes. This can cause parents to become overly nosy and do things that interfere with healthy development. Negative parenting behavior will never completely disappear from youth sports, but much can be done by educating parents and improving the lines of communication between coaches and parents. Parent meetings should be held at the beginning of the season to inform parents.


Sport brings a host of benefits to young people, but there is growing concern among sports officials, journalists and psychologists that youth sport is becoming increasingly professional. They mean this in the sense that the focus shifts from physical, social, and psychological development to more extrinsic goals like winning, ranking, and winning college scholarships. There's even a World Golf Championship for kids under 6! Some fathers even go to sperm banks and buy sperm from top athletes in the hope of producing more athletic offspring. Most academics oppose the professionalization of youth sports because it focuses most resources on only the most talented children and ignores most children who could have developed through sport. Coaches and parents should remember that athletic talent at a young age cannot be accurately predicted. Talent development phases should not be ignored either. A specialization in a single sport is not absolutely necessary at a young age. Sport psychologists want programs to be developmentally appropriate and not forced on children at an early age.

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Chapter 23 - Aggression in Sport

Assault incidents have become quite common in the world of sports. It takes place in the squares of the sports halls and in the stands. Fan behavior at professional soccer matches also turned violent. Violence is also increasing in schools. Fighting is bad, but more and more kids are bringing knives and guns (in the US) to school and using them. This created a climate of fear among students and teachers. Children must learn the ability to resolve conflicts nonviolently. Sport has the potential to control violence. People view boxing, wrestling, and even soccer as socially acceptable channels for aggression.

The term aggression is used differently in sport and exercise. There is good aggression and bad aggression. Most aggressive behavior in sports does not appear to be inherently desirable or undesirable. Whether it is good or bad seems to depend on interpretation. Two people watching the same hockey game cannot agree on whether a hit was a good or bad assault. It is easier to talk about aggression when you are neutral about it. That is, as behavior you want to understand. Aggression is defined by psychologists as any form of behavior that aims to hurt or harm another living being motivated to avoid such treatment. There are four criteria for aggression: it involves intent, it is behavior, it involves harm or injury, and it is directed against a living organism. Aggression is physical or verbal behavior. Aggression is not an attitude or an emotion. Aggression has to do with damage and injury, and can be psychological or physical. It is destined for another living being. Hitting a human or animal is aggression, but dropping the tennis racket after losing is not aggressive. The aggression is intentional. Accidental damage is not aggressive if the damage is unintentional. When sport psychologists talk about aggression in general, they are referring to what most of us would consider bad aggression. However, not all bad aggression is aggressive in the sense of the sport psychological definition. There is also a fair amount of aggression and most sports psychologists often refer to this as assertive behavior (wearing a shoe net). Good aggression follows the rules with a lot of intensity and emotion, but it does no harm.

Psychologists distinguish two types of aggression: instrumental aggression and hostile aggression. Instrumental aggression occurs when a non-aggressive target is sought. The primary purpose of hostile aggression is to cause psychological harm or harm to another person. Some researchers argue that it is too easy to think of these two types of aggression as a simple dichotomy. Aggression can include elements of both types. Both hostile and instrumental aggression involve the intent to hurt and harm, and often the two cannot be neatly separated. Most athletic aggression is primarily instrumental, but that makes it unacceptable.

causes of aggression

Psychologists have four main theories about the causes of aggression: social learning theory, instinct theory, frustration-aggression theory, and revised frustration-aggression theory. Some have even proposed a unifying framework that encapsulates much of the current thinking on aggression.

instinct theory

According to this theory, humans have an innate instinct to be aggressive, and this instinct develops until it inevitably needs expression. Instinct can be expressed in two ways: direct and indirect. The direct expression of aggression is through an attack on another living being, and the indirect direction is through catharsis, in which aggression is alleviated through socially acceptable means such as sport. For an instinct theorist, sport and exercise play an extremely important role in society. However, a biologically innate aggressive instinct has never been identified and there is no support for the notion of catharsis.


Sometimes called drive theory, this theory holds that aggression is the direct result of frustration arising from goal failure or blockage. However, studies show that people generally manage their frustration or express it in non-aggressive ways. The counterargument of frustration-aggression theorists is that the aggressive reactions that occur are not always obvious. They can be channeled through socially acceptable channels such as: B. Contact sports. Catharsis also plays an important role in this theory. There is little evidence of catharsis in sport. Furthermore, there is no real evidence that participating in contact sports reduces aggression levels in aggressive and frustrated participants.

social learning theory

This theory explains aggression as a behavior that people learn by watching others imitate certain behaviors and receiving validation for similar actions. According to the model, children who observe adult role models committing violent acts are more likely to repeat these acts than children who are not exposed to such aggressive role models. This is particularly effective when children are encouraged to copy the actions of adult role models. The researchers showed that observing violence in the media was positively associated with aggression. It seems that many people learn socially that such actions are appropriate ways of dealing with disagreements. Researchers have also found support for the theory of social learning in sport.

Revised frustration-aggression theory

Also known as cognitive neoassociation theory, this theory combines elements of the original frustration-aggression theory with social learning theory. According to the theory, although frustration does not always lead to aggression, it increases the likelihood of aggression by increasing arousal, anger, and other emotions and thoughts. Increased anger and arousal lead to aggression only when socially learned cues signal the appropriateness of aggression in a given situation. If social cues indicate that aggression is inappropriate, aggression should not be shown.

general pattern of aggression

Researchers have discovered that aggression is much more complicated than initially thought. There are various personal (beliefs) and situational (provocation) factors that influence aggressive behavior. A unified framework for understanding aggression is being developed. Depending on the model, there is some kind of aggressive entry. Personal and situational factors and their interaction determine the tendency to aggressive behavior. This means that the situation and personality will determine how likely someone is to become aggressive. When aggressive inputs are experienced, the internal state changes. Complex processes are mediated by a person's thoughts and emotions and lead to aggression.

Investigating aggression in sport

Competitive sport differs from many activities in that it usually takes place in the presence of an audience. As a general rule, fans are not passive observers. Fans are connected to their team and are generally well mannered and supportive. However, cases of fan violence are on the rise. Sports psychologists have studied spectator aggression. Studies testing the catharsis theory have found that watching a sporting event does not decrease a viewer's level of aggression. Viewing violent contact sports actually increased the viewer's willingness to be aggressive. Aggression does not normally occur unless other environmental or play-related factors are present. Fan aggression is also more likely to occur among younger, disadvantaged male viewers in crowded conditions and under the influence of alcohol. Loss was associated with a higher propensity for fan violence, and rivalries were also associated with fan violence.

The result of a survey shows that many athletes consider some aggressive actions to be inappropriate in general, but appropriate in the sports environment. Fighting is considered appropriate in certain sporting situations, but any form of fighting would not be tolerated in a school marching band. This double standard is called game reasoning. People believe and learn that being more aggressive in sports than in other contexts of life is not a problem. This can cause problems. One is that aggression carries the risk of injury and damage. Sport should teach children to behave correctly, but allowing aggressive behavior in sport sends the wrong message to children.

Some research on aggression in sport focuses on moral distancing or how athletes justify their aggressive actions. This is based on the sociocognitive theory of moral thought and action. This identifies eight psychosocial mechanisms to justify a person's aggressive actions. Some of the mechanisms include transferring responsibility to others or cognitively restructuring the violent act so that it is not considered immoral. Evidence shows that aggressive play is linked to sports injuries. Some athletes and coaches believe that aggression enhances athletic performance at the team or individual level. The relationship between performance and aggression is complex, and there have been cases where aggressive actions paid off. Studies have shown that key predictors of aggressive tendencies in young basketball players include their teammates' perceived aggressive behavior in the same situation, as well as their willingness to hurt others at the request of the coach. The results also show that the more teams compete against each other, the more likely they are to be aggressive. Studies also show that men have a higher frequency of aggression compared to women. There is also a difference between aggression between cultures: Members of a collectivist culture are less likely to accept aggression as a means to achieve goals.

professional practice

Certain situations provoke aggressive behavior. Aggression is more likely when athletes are frustrated. Athletes get frustrated when they lose, play through pain, or feel self-conscious. Athletes who see mistakes as a threat to their identity are more likely to be aggressive. We cannot always control situations that cause frustration. But athletes can withdraw from the situation at the first sign of aggression. Athletes can learn skills to manage their emotions and responses to frustration. Also, an overemphasis on winning is the root of many frustrations, as defeats can lead to aggression. One strategy to reduce athletic aggression is to help establish appropriate team norms. Team leaders need to talk about the difference between aggression and assertive behavior. Team leaders also need to monitor the actions of team members. The aggressiveness of the spectators must also be controlled. This can be accomplished by developing strict alcohol control policies or by prohibiting spectators from drinking alcohol. Spectators must also be immediately penalized for aggressive actions.

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Chapter 24 - Good Sportsmanship

Most people have heard that sports and physical activity build character and develop moral values. However, some of the most popular models have been bad men or women of the sport. It's not just elite athletes who misbehave, but college students as well. High school jocks sometimes put their morals aside too.


Character and good sportsmanship are hard to define. Most people know what these terms mean, but they rarely define them precisely. There are those who say that good sport is respectful interaction. Character and good sportsmanship fall into the general area of ​​morality in the context of sports. They have to do with our beliefs, actions, and judgments about what is ethical. Some scholars say that morality in sports includes three related concepts: fair play, good sportsmanship, and character. Fair play is necessary so that all athletes have an equal chance of winning. It requires all athletes to understand and abide by the formal rules of the game and the unwritten rules of the game necessary to ensure that competition is fair. Good sportsmanship is keeping the game fair, even when doing so could result in a loss. Good sports behavior consists of a total commitment to participation, respect for social conventions (handshake after the game), respect for the rules, respect for the opponent and avoiding a bad attitude towards participation. Character refers to a set of qualities that can be developed in sport. Participants learn to overcome obstacles, develop self-control, work together with their teammates, and persevere in the face of defeat. Character in Sport encompasses four interconnected virtues: Good Sportsmanship, Fairness, Compassion, and Integrity. Compassion is related to empathy and is the ability to accept and appreciate the feelings of others. Integrity is the ability to uphold one's morality and justice in the belief that one can fulfill one's moral intentions.

Approaches to character development.

Today, three main approaches to character development are recognized: the social learning approach, the structural development approach, and the social psychology approach.

social learning approach

Character development and aggression are linked in many ways. According to the social learning approach, specific positive athletic attitudes and behaviors that society deems appropriate are learned through observational learning, modeling, and social comparison. It is then internalized and used to control behavior. According to this approach, people's social learning history determines their level of good athletic behavior. Recent versions also emphasize that behavior is determined by an interplay of situational and personal factors.

Structural development approach

This approach focuses on how psychological growth and developmental changes in the judgments and thoughts underlying the child's behavior interact with environmental experiences to shape moral reasoning. Moral reasoning is the decision-making process in which a person determines the right or wrong of a given action. Moral development is the growth process through which a person develops the ability to reason morally. Moral behavior is performing an action that is considered right or wrong. Moral reasoning arises from individual experiences, as well as from the child's psychological growth and development, and is believed to guide moral behavior. Some scholars have found that the ability to reason morally depends on a person's level of mental or cognitive development.

Developmental psychologists have discovered sequential stages of moral development in children. This happens in five steps. Not everyone reaches the maximum level, and people often do not always use the highest level of moral reasoning of which they are capable. At the first level, reasoning is at the level of external control. It's usually fine as long as you don't get caught. Children decide for themselves what is right or wrong. The second level also focuses on maximizing self-interest, but the child does not just see the result of the action. At the third level, the person treats others as he would like to be treated. Self interest is no longer the priority. People take an altruistic perspective. The fourth level focuses on following external rules. At this stage, the person recognizes that the official rules were developed for the common good. The last level focuses on what is best for everyone involved. This is the most mature reasoning, since the individual seeks to maximize the interest of the group through mutual agreements.

psychosocial approach

This approach takes into account the structural-developmental approach and a wide range of social factors that go beyond modeling. Social actors (coaches and parents) characterize good sports behavior. Studies have found evidence supporting the social psychology approach. Studies have found that poor athletic behavior was predicted by coach actions, team norms, and parent and coach perceptions of norms.

The connection between moral behavior and moral thinking

Scientists have discovered that there is a consistent link between aggression and people with less mature moral thinking. People behave more aggressively when their moral thinking is less mature. Certain steps must be taken to translate moral thought into moral action. There are four stages of moral action in the connection between moral reasoning and behavior: interpreting the situation, deciding the best course of moral action, deciding to act morally, and implementing a moral response. To understand the people we work with, we need to know how individuals reason morally and how they put that reasoning into action.

Character development and physical activity.

There is little evidence that physical programs automatically build character. Character is taught in sports activities. Teaching moral thinking and good sportsmanship involves the systematic use of certain strategies. Studies have found that providing systematic and organized information on moral development can transform children's character. Coaches and community leaders often claim that participation in sports keeps youth off the streets, in trouble, and in the games. Studies have shown that participants in organized sports are less likely to engage in criminal behavior than non-participants. One reason for this is that athletes have less frequent and shorter interactions with other offensive players. Therefore, athletes have a different association. The social attachment perspective assumes that children who play sports develop bonds with others who have dominant prosocial values. Young athletes identify with their coach and team and know some values. According to the labeling hypothesis, being an athlete often leads to special treatment. According to this view, some young people receive preferential treatment because of their athletic status and get away with more criminal behavior than non-athletes. According to the Economic Burden Statement, the root of the relationship between sport and crime is that many young people are poor but still want the high standard of living enjoyed by others. Alienation from peers, family, low self-esteem, and lack of positive role models are some of the reasons youth join gangs. Exercise can alleviate all of these things. Furthermore, children stay in gangs because gangs provide for their needs, such as providing them with an identity. But membership in a sports club can also help. To positively influence negative behavior, physical activity must be combined with psychological and social education. There are nine strategies that can enhance character development. The first is that good sporting behavior must be defined in the program. Secondly, it is necessary to reinforce and encourage good sports behaviour. The next is that appropriate behaviors must be modeled. Fourth, counselors must explain why certain behaviors are appropriate. Next is that moral dilemmas and decisions need to be discussed. Another reason is that coaches need to incorporate moral dilemmas and choices into their practices. The next is that collaborative learning strategies must be taught. The eighth is to create a task-oriented motivational climate and use autonomy support coaching. The last is to transfer power from the leaders to the participants.

leading practices

Some people believe that coaches have nothing to do with teaching young people morals and values ​​and that these values ​​should be taught by parents. The authors of this book argue that core values ​​such as empathy and honesty must also be instilled in coaches. Moral development must become part of a leader's mindset. A coach must look for ways to develop and enhance the positive characteristics of the athletes. According to a study on effective youth morale and character development, coaches should teach values, become enlightened leaders of moral debates, exemplify the values ​​embodied in sport, and mentor athletes struggling with moral issues. Some researchers say resilience is one of the most important life skills coaches can teach disadvantaged athletes. Resilience is the ability to successfully recover from severe hazards. Resilient youth possess three key attributes: social skills (ability to interact socially with others and build social support networks), autonomy (ability to act independently), and optimism and hope. The values ​​learned in the sports school cannot be automatically transferred to other environments. Coaches who want to instill in young athletes values ​​applicable to non-sport situations should discuss with their athletes how and when this makes sense in other contexts.

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(Video) How to Reach Flow States | Sport Psychology


1. Intro to Sport & Exercise Psychology
(Mark P. Otten)
2. Sport and Performance Psychology: Controlling Anxiety, Arousal and Stress
(Richard Keegan)
3. Decision Making in Athletes - Sport Psychology
(Richard Keegan)
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