The Solution-Focused Approach in Sport Psychology

in The Sport Psychologist
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The solution-focused approach is a form of brief therapy that has been successfully adapted to business coaching and school counseling. The purpose of this article is to give an introduction to solution-focused counseling and how to use it in the field of sport psychology. This article highlights key issues in solution-focused counseling. It also describes the relationship between the athlete and the counselor, where it is common practice to distinguish between three types of relationship: the visitor type, the complainer type, and the customer type. In a solution-focused process of counseling, the introductory conversation usually has the following structure: (a) description of the problem, (b) development of well-formulated goals, (c) exploration for expectation, and (d) end-of-session feedback. The solution-focused process and a number of techniques are described, together with a case example from sport.

Rune Høigaard and Bjørn Tore Johansen are with the Institute for Sport, Faculty of Health and Sport, Agder University College, Serviceboks 422, 4604 Kristiansand, Norway. E-mail:

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