Behavioral and Situational Factors Affecting Concentration and Skill Performance

in Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology

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John M. Silva IIIState University of New York - BrocKport

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The data presented in this study indicate that self-reported concentration levels of volunteer undergraduate students (N = 122) are affected by the type of behavior exhibited by a performer (i.e., hostile aggression or proactive assertion) and by the nature of the social environmental setting (i.e., sport or nonsport competition). Also demonstrated was a relationship between self-report levels of concentration and subject performance in both a nonsport and sport setting. Concentration was negatively affected by aroused, angry behavior and by a social environmental setting of considerable complexity and stress. Subject performance was superior in situations where concentration levels were elevated. The results suggest that concentration is an influential factor in skilled performance and is sensitive to variations in overt behavior and social environmental settings. Future research should focus on additional factors that tend to disrupt the state of concentration as well as factors that may enhance it.

Reprint requests should be sent to John Silva, Department of Physical Education, State University College at Brockport, Brockport, NY 14420.

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