“Superstition” in the Collegiate Baseball Player

in The Sport Psychologist

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Tom CiborowskiUniversity of Hawaii, Manoa

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An investigation of superstitious activity among collegiate baseball players (n = 83) was conducted over the course of three full seasons. A major feature of the investigation was a distinction between behaviors mediated by a conscious belief, and behaviors (presumably nonmediated) established through simple contiguity. Additionally, the baseball players were compared to nonathletes (n = 348) on a variety of traditional indicators of superstitious belief, but the comparison yielded few significant differences. Although the investigation showed that the ballplayers engaged in a high level of superstitious activity, it was concluded that such activity is unremarkable, if not understandable.

Tom Ciborowski is with the Department of Psychology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, HI 96822.

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