Is Self-Confidence a Bias Factor in Higher-Order Catastrophe Models? An Exploratory Analysis

in Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology

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Lew HardyUniversity of Wales, Bangor

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Tim WoodmanUniversity of Wales, Bangor

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Stephen CarringtonUniversity of Wales, Bangor

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This paper examines Hardy’s (1990, 1996a) proposition that self-confidence might act as the bias factor in a butterfly catastrophe model of stress and performance. Male golfers (N = 8) participated in a golf tournament and reported their cognitive anxiety, somatic anxiety, and self-confidence prior to their tee shot on each hole. All anxiety, self-confidence, and performance scores were standardized within participants in order to control for individual differences. The data were then collapsed across participants and categorized into a high self-confidence condition and a low self-confidence condition by means of a median split. A series of two-way (Cognitive Anxiety × Somatic Anxiety) ANOVAs was conducted on each self-confidence condition in order to fag where the maximum Cognitive Anxiety × Somatic Anxiety interaction effect size lay along the somatic anxiety axis. These ANOVAs revealed that the maximum interaction effect size between cognitive and somatic anxiety was at a higher level of somatic anxiety for the high self-confidence condition than for the low self-confidence condition, thus supporting the moderating role of self-confidence in a catastrophe model framework.

The authors are with the School of Sport, Health, and Exercise Sciences, George Bldg., Holyhead Rd., University of Wales, Bangor, Gwynedd LL57 2PX, U.K.

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