A Qualitative Investigation of the Sibling Sport Achievement Experience

in The Sport Psychologist
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  • 1 Michigan State University
  • 2 Georgia Southern University
  • 3 James Madison University
  • 4 University of Miami
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Sibling relationships are often regarded as among the longest lasting connections in a person’s life (Conger & Kramer, 2010). Sibling research has addressed topics such as socialization, support, and similarities and differences of siblings (e.g., Eaton, Chipperfield, & Singbeil, 1989; Horn & Horn, 2007; Whiteman, McHale, & Crouter, 2007). Scant attention has been given to how a younger sibling may be influenced by an older sibling’s sport involvement. The current study explored the lived experience of an older sibling’s sport achievement from the perspective of a younger sibling. An open-ended phenomenological approach (Kvale, 1983) was used to gain a description of the experience of sibling achievements in sport. Participant interviews revealed an overall thematic structure consisting of both positive and negative experiences: family influence, social influence, fondness, identity, abandonment, and jealousy. These findings broaden both sibling and sport literature, while providing valuable information for researchers and practitioners.

Blazo is with the Dept. of Kinesiology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI. Czech is with the Dept. of Health and Kinesiology, Georgia Southern University, Statesboro, GA. Carson is with the Dept. of Kinesiology, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA. Dees is with the Dept. of Kinesiology and Sport Sciences, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL.

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