Strategies for Building Self-Efficacy in Tennis Players: A Comparative Analysis of Australian and American Coaches

in The Sport Psychologist
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  • 1 Univ. of North Texas
  • 2 Univ. of Western Australia
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The purpose of the present investigation was to compare Australian tennis coaches’ frequency of use, and perceived effectiveness, of 13 self-efficacy building strategies to those of American tennis coaches. Subjects were 60 Australian tennis coaches coaching at the club or state level. Results indicated that Australian coaches used all 13 strategies designed to enhance selfefficacy to a moderate degree and found these techniques to be at least moderately effective. The most often-used strategies to enhance self-efficacy, as well as those strategies found most effective, included encouraging positive self-talk, modeling confidence oneself, using instruction drills, using rewarding statements liberally, and using verbal persuasion. When comparing the results of the Australian and American coaches, few differences were found. However, the American coaches used more of the following self-efficacy strategies: conditioning drills, the modeling of other successful players, the emphasis that feelings of anxiety are not fear but are a sign of readiness, and the emphasis that failure results from lack of effort or experience and not from a lack of innate ability. Results are discussed in terms of Bandura’s self-efficacy theory and Weinberg and Jackson’s (1990) efficacy-building strategies used by American tennis coaches. Future directions for research are offered.

R. Weinberg and A. Jackson are with the Department of Kinesiology at the University of North Texas, Denton, TX 76203. R. Grove is with the Department of Human Movement and Recreation at the University of Western Australia, Nedlands, Perth. Western Australia.

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