Matt Dicks, Chris Pocock, Richard Thelwell, and John van der Kamp
Peter Gröpel and Jürgen Beckmann
Researchers suggests that a pre-performance routine (PPR) can improve performance in competitions. The effectiveness of left-hand contractions, a PPR to trigger facilitative cortical processes for skilled motor performance, was tested in two studies. In Study 1, gymnasts competing at the German university championships in artistic gymnastics performed their routines with or without the PPR. In Study 2, gymnasts performed the balance beam exercise either using the PPR or the control task (right-hand contractions) under simulated competition pressure. The qualification performance (Study 1) and the pressure-free performance (Study 2) were controlled. In both studies, participants in the PPR group performed better than control participants. The results indicate that left-hand contractions may be a useful PPR in the field.
John F. Mathers
Success on the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) World Tour requires a specific blend of perceptuomotor abilities, technical proficiency, tactical awareness and mental skills. This case study describes the competitive structure of professional tennis and outlines the program of mental skills delivered to a professional tennis player over a 3-year period. The program embraced five stages: (1) education; (2) assessment/profiling; (3) mental skill learning; (4) application of mental skills in context and (5) evaluation, and was associated with some positive outcomes. This case study provides some possible guidelines for sport psychologists who may wish to provide consultancy services within professional tennis.
Thomas Davies, Dave Collins, and Andrew Cruickshank
Despite substantial research in golf on preshot routines, our understanding of what elite golfers are or potentially should be focusing on beyond this phase of performance is limited. Accordingly, interviews were conducted with elite-level golfers and support practitioners to explore what golfers are and should be attending to before competition and between shots and holes. Results pointed to a number of important and novel processes for use at macro (i.e., precompetition) and meso (i.e., between shots and holes) levels, including the role of shared mental models across team members.
Mark W. Bruner, Ian D. Boardley, Veronica Allan, Christopher Forrest, Zachary Root, and Jean Côté
Social identity has been found to play a salient role in regulating teammate behavior among youth participating in a range of sports (Bruner, Boardley, & Côté, 2014). This study aimed to better understand social identity by examining how it may influence intrateam moral behavior specifically in competitive youth ice hockey. Thirty-six male and female competitive youth ice hockey players from nine teams participated in narrative interviews. Using a thematic narrative analysis, three distinct narratives were identified: (1) family-oriented team narrative, (2) performance-oriented team narrative, and (3) dominance-oriented team narrative. Within each of the narratives, a reciprocal relationship between social identity and intrateam moral behavior was reported such that young athletes’ social identities developed through team membership may influence and be influenced by their moral behavior toward teammates. Collectively, the results extend previous research by providing an in-depth qualitative understanding of social identity and intrateam moral behavior in youth sport.
Editor’s Note: The Bulletin Board provides current news and information about the field of sport psychology. Featured is news from professional organizations, announcements of upcoming conferences and events, information about innovative developments in teaching and consulting in sport psychology, web resources, job and career opportunities in sport psychology, and names in the news. The success of the Bulletin Board depends, in large, upon the information provided by you. Please send information for possible inclusion in the Bulletin Board to: Rich Neil Ph.D., Cardiff School of Sport, Cardiff Metropolitan University, Cyncoed Road, Cardiff, CF23 6XD, United Kingdom. Telephone: 44-2920-205-815; Fax: 44-2920-416-768; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject heading TSP Bulletin Board. Thanks for your support.
Andrew G. Wood, Jamie B. Barker, and Martin J. Turner
Rational emotive behavior therapy (REBT; Ellis, 1957) is a psychotherapeutic approach receiving increasing interest within sport. REBT is focused on identifying, disputing, and replacing irrational beliefs (IBs) with rational beliefs (RBs) to promote emotional well-being and goal achievement. This study provides a detailed case outlining the application and effect of seven one-to-one REBT sessions with an elite level archer who was experiencing performance-related anxiety, before and during competition. The case also offers an insight into common misconceptions, challenges, and guidance for those who may consider applying REBT within their practice. Data revealed meaningful short and long-term (6-months) reductions in IBs and improvements in RBs, self-efficacy, perception of control and archery performance. The case supports the effective application of REBT as an intervention with athletic performers, promoting lasting changes in an athlete’s ability to manage their cognitions, emotions and behaviors in the pursuit of performance excellence.
Alyson J. Crozier and Kevin S. Spink
The primary purpose of this research was to examine the influence of different normative (descriptive, injunctive) messages on individual self-reported effort in sport. Adult recreational volleyball athletes (n = 58) reported their self-perceived effort, were randomly assigned through their team designation to one of three conditions (descriptive norm, injunctive norm, control) and then received multiple e-mail messages specific to their condition motivating them to work hard. Participants reported their self-perceived effort a second time after receipt of these messages. The results from a one-way ANCOVA, controlling for initial perceived effort, revealed that those in the normative conditions reported greater perceived effort than those in the control condition. Preliminary evidence is provided suggesting that individual self-reported effort may be significantly impacted by the perception of what others are doing and what others approve of within that environment (i.e., normative information).
Hayley L. deBeaudrap, John G.H. Dunn, and Nicholas L. Holt
The purpose of this study was to explore female varsity athletes’ perceptions of how they developed high levels of dispositional optimism in sport. Eighty-three female varsity athletes completed a domain-specific version of the Life Orientation Test (LOT: Scheier & Carver, 1985). Nine participants (M age = 19.33 years, SD = 1.5) who had high dispositional optimism in sport then completed individual semistructured interviews. Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis methodology was used. Results showed that during childhood, participants perceived that their parents were supportive, provided feedback, and allowed them to have choice over the sports they played. During adolescence, coaches began to play an important role and participants were also able to learn about being optimistic through the positive and negative experiences they encountered. During early adulthood, participants developed personal narratives about the ways in which they approached sport with optimism.