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Attitudes of Sport Fans Toward the Electronic Sign-Stealing Scandal in Major League Baseball: Differing Associations With Perfectionism and Excellencism

Patrick Gaudreau and Benjamin J.I. Schellenberg

The winners of the 2017 World Series were found guilty of illegally using electronic devices to steal the signs of their opponents. Many but not all sport fans negatively reacted to this cheating incident. We relied on the model of excellencism and perfectionism to determine if perfection strivers are less unfavorable toward electronic sign stealing (cheating) compared with excellence strivers. Sport fans (N = 321) completed a measure of excellencism and perfectionism. We used three different approaches to measure attitudes toward electronic sign stealing in baseball. Results of a multivariate multiple regression showed that sport fans who are perfection strivers held more favorable attitudes toward electronic sign stealing compared with excellence strivers. Perfection strivers also reported higher moral disengagement and winning-at-all-cost mentality. These findings are insightful because they indicate that perfectionistic standards significantly relate to sport cheating-related attitudes once we separate excellencism from perfectionism.

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Kim Gammage, Jeff Caron, Alyson Crozier, Alison Ede, Matt Hoffman, Christopher Hill, Sean Locke, Desi McEwan, Kathleen Mellano, Eva Pila, Matthew Stork, and Svenja Wolf

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Modeling Players’ Scanning Activity in Football

Marius Pokolm, Robert Rein, Daniel Müller, Stephan Nopp, Marie Kirchhain, Karl Marius Aksum, Geir Jordet, and Daniel Memmert

The purpose of this study was to develop and test models of scanning activity in football. Gibson’s ecological approach of visual perception and exploratory activity provided the theoretical framework for the models. The video-based data analysis consisted of 17 selected matches and 239 players of the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) U17 and U19 European Championship 2018 and the UEFA U17 and U21 European Championship 2019. The results showed a positive relation between scanning frequency and successful passes, as well as changes in body orientation. Scanning frequency was also related to a player’s appearances in national teams and to opponent pressure. Opponent pressure had a large effect on pass result and the player’s body orientation. Previous research on the relation between scanning frequency and performance was extended by several contextual predictors. Future research should focus on gaining a deeper understanding of the relation between scanning frequency and further contextual variables related to scanning.

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Pulling the Trigger: The Effect of a 5-Minute Slow Diaphragmatic Breathing Intervention on Psychophysiological Stress Responses and Pressurized Pistol Shooting Performance

Aodhagán Conlon, Rachel Arnold, Ezio Preatoni, and Lee J. Moore

This study examined the effect of slow diaphragmatic breathing on psychophysiological stress responses and pressurized performance. Sixty-seven participants (40 female; M age = 20.17 ± 2.77 years) were randomly assigned to either a diaphragmatic-breathing, paced-breathing, or control group. Participants completed a nonpressurized shooting task and then received instructions about a pressurized version. Next, the diaphragmatic group was told to breathe at 6 breaths/min, the paced group at 12 breaths/min, and the control group received no instructions. Following a 5-min intervention period, participants completed the pressurized task while performance was assessed. Psychophysiological stress responses (e.g., cognitive anxiety, heart rate) were recorded throughout. Results revealed that diaphragmatic breathing had mixed effects on stress responses, with some unaffected (e.g., heart rate) and others reduced (e.g., cognitive anxiety), and little effect on performance. Findings suggested that slow diaphragmatic breathing might not aid pressurized performance but could benefit psychological stress responses.

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Children’s Motivation Profiles in Sports and Physical Activities: A Latent Profile Analysis and Self-Determination Theory Approach

Annette Lohbeck, Andreas Hohmann, Philipp von Keitz, and Monika Daseking

Using latent profile analysis and self-determination theory, the present study aimed to examine younger children’s motivation profiles in sports and physical activities and the relations of those profiles to various predictors and achievement outcomes. A total of 1,116 German children from Grade 2 participated in this study. Latent-profile-analysis solutions based on five behavioral-regulation types covered in self-determination theory (i.e., intrinsic, identified, introjected, external, amotivation) were tested. Results favored a three-profile solution, showing three theoretically meaningful and distinct motivation profiles labeled “amotivated,” “non-self-determined,” and “self-determined.” Older children and children with a lower physical self-concept were more likely to be members of the amotivated profile relative to the other profiles than younger children and children with a higher physical self-concept. Furthermore, children of the self-determined profile demonstrated the best physical performance in various motor-skills tests.

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Volume 44 (2022): Issue 2 (Apr 2022)

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Positive Implicit Associations for Physical Activity Predict Physical Activity and Affective Responses During Exercise

Gerson Daniel de Oliveira Calado, Andressa de Oliveira Araújo, Gledson Tavares Amorim Oliveira, Jeffer Eidi Sasaki, Amanda L. Rebar, Daniel Gomes da Silva Machado, and Hassan Mohamed Elsangedy

The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships of implicit associations and explicit evaluations with affective responses during an aerobic exercise session, physical activity, and sedentary behavior in adults. Fifty adults (70% women; median age = 31 years; 25th, 75th percentiles: 24.50, 40.50 years old; body mass index = 25.29 ± 4.97 kg/m2) not engaged in regular physical activity completed an implicit association test and a questionnaire of explicit evaluations and wore an accelerometer for 7 days. After the 7-day period, the participants performed 30 min of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise. Every 5 min, the affective response and the perception of effort were recorded. Participants who had more positive implicit associations toward physical activity (vs. sedentary behavior) reported higher affective responses during exercise and engaged in more moderate to vigorous physical activity. Encouraging pleasant physical activity may act to partially improve future physical activity through automatic motivational processes.

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Relationships Between Physical Activity, Boredom Proneness, and Subjective Well-Being Among U.K. Adults During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Ashley McCurdy, Jodie A. Stearns, Ryan E. Rhodes, Debbie Hopkins, Kerry Mummery, and John C. Spence

This investigation sought to examine physical activity (PA) as a potential determinant of chronic boredom and associated well-being within the context of COVID-related restrictions. A representative sample of U.K. adults (N = 1,521) completed a survey on June 1, 2020. Bivariate analyses demonstrated that individuals who met guidelines and maintained or increased PA scored higher on life satisfaction, worthwhileness, and happiness and lower on anxiety (i.e., indicators of well-being) and boredom proneness (d = 0.13–0.43). Boredom proneness was correlated with all indicators of well-being (r = .38–.54). A series of regression models revealed that PA predicted lower boredom proneness and better life satisfaction, worthwhileness, and happiness. Boredom proneness accounted for the covariance between PA and well-being. Prospective research is needed to confirm causality of the observed relationships.

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Athlete Burnout Symptoms Are Increasing: A Cross-Temporal Meta-Analysis of Average Levels From 1997 to 2019

Daniel J. Madigan, Luke F. Olsson, Andrew P. Hill, and Thomas Curran

With the increasing prevalence of mental health difficulties in sport, athletes may be at greater risk of burnout than ever before. In the present study, we tested this possibility by examining whether average athlete burnout levels have changed over the past 2 decades, from 1997 to 2019. A literature search returned 91 studies (N = 21,012) and 396 effect sizes. Findings from cross-temporal meta-analysis suggested that burnout symptoms have increased over the past 2 decades. Specifically, we found that athletes’ mean levels of reduced sense of athletic accomplishment and sport devaluation have increased. As burnout symptoms are now typically higher among athletes than in the past, we can expect more athletes to be prone to the negative effects of burnout. Sport is therefore in urgent need of prevention and intervention strategies to stop and reverse this trend.

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Transition-Related Psychosocial Factors and Mental Health Outcomes in Former National Football League Players: An NFL-LONG Study

J.D. DeFreese, Samuel R. Walton, Zachary Yukio Kerr, Benjamin L. Brett, Avinash Chandran, Rebekah Mannix, Hope Campbell, Ruben J. Echemendia, Michael A. McCrea, William P. Meehan III, and Kevin M. Guskiewicz

Transition from professional sport to nonsport endeavors has implications for postcareer health and well-being of athletes. The purpose of the current study was to examine associations among transition-related psychosocial factors and current mental health outcomes in former National Football League (NFL) players. Participants were former NFL players (n = 1,784; mean age = 52.3 ± 16.3 years) who responded to a questionnaire assessing the nature of their discontinuation from professional football (i.e., any degree of voluntary choice vs. forced discontinuation), prediscontinuation transition planning (yes vs. no), and current symptoms of depression and anxiety. After adjusting for relevant covariates, having an involuntary discontinuation and no transition plan prior to discontinuation were associated with greater depressive and anxiety symptom severity. Autonomy in discontinuation and pretransition planning are important to former NFL football players’ mental health. Increasing autonomy in the discontinuation decision and pretransition planning represent psychoeducational intervention targets for this population.