Effect of Priming Cooperation or Individualism on a Collective and Interdependent Task: Changeover Speed in the 4 × 100-Meter Relay Race

in Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology
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  • 1 University of Reading
  • 2 Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense
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Priming effects of cooperation vs. individualism were investigated on changeover speed within a 4 × 100-m relay race. Ten teams of four adult beginner athletes ran two relays, a pretest race and an experimental race 3 weeks later. Just before the experimental race, athletes were primed with either cooperation or individualism through a scrambled-sentence task. Comparing to the pretest performance, cooperation priming improved baton speed in the exchange zone (+30 cm/s). Individualism priming did not impair changeover performance. The boundary conditions of priming effects applied to collective and interdependent tasks are discussed within the implicit coordination framework.

Bry is with the Department of Psychology, University of Reading, Reading, United Kingdom. Meyer, Oberlé, and Gherso are with the Department of Psychology, Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense, Nanterre, France.