Effects of Cognitive-Behavioral Psychological Skills Training on the Motivation, Preparation, and Putting Performance of Novice Golfers

in The Sport Psychologist
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This study examined the effects of a 14-week cognitive-behavioral teaching program on the motivation, preparation, and putting performance of novice golfers. A cognitive-behavioral program was adapted from Boutcher and Rotella (1987) and was compared with a physical skills training group and a control group. The Sport Motivation Scale (Pelletier, Fortier, Vallerand, Tusón, Briére, & Blais, 1995) was used to measure intrinsic versus introjected forms of selfregulation. Preputt routines and actual putting performance were measured by observer ratings. Participants completed all dependent measures prior to training and at 3 additional times spaced over 4-week intervals. The results showed that participants in the cognitive-behavioral program displayed enhanced intrinsic motivation, more consistent use of preputt routines, and improved putting performance relative to participants in the other 2 groups. Cognitive-behavioral participants also showed a significantly reduced use of introjection, which reflects a harsh, self-evaluative form of self-regulation similar to ego involvement. The results support the conclusion drawn by Whelan, Myers, Berman, Bryant, and Mellon (1988) that cognitive-behavioral approaches are effective for performance enhancement; they also suggest that such approaches can produce positive motivational effects.

Pierre H. Beauchamp is with the Canadian Olympic Association, Canadian Olympic Athlete Services, 2380 Pierre Dupuy, Cite du Havre, Montreal, Canada, H3C 3R4. Wayne R. Halliwell and Jean F. Fournier are with the Department of Physical Education, University of Montreal, Montreal, Canada, H3C 3J7. Richard Koestner is with the Department of Psychology, McGill University, Montreal, Canada, H3A 1Y2.

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