Randy C. Battochio, Robert J. Schinke, Danny L. Battochio, Wayne Halliwell, and Gershon Tenenbaum
Through adaptation studies in elite sport, researchers can delineate the strategies that amateur and professional athletes employ during career transitions (e.g., promotion, relocation). Fiske (2004) identified five core motives as catalysts to adaptation: understanding, controlling, self-enhancement, belonging, and trusting, which were recently contextualized in sport as a result of one archival study examining the second hand experiences of National Hockey League (NHL) players. The purpose of the present study was to learn about the adaptation process of NHL players based on a first hand data source (i.e., semi-structured interview). A semi-structured open-ended interview guide was utilized to learn about the experiences of four groups of NHL players (n = 11): prospects (n = 3), rookies (n = 3), veterans (n = 2), and retirees (n = 3). There is an indication that adaptation strategies and sub-strategies vary according to the player’s career stage and the challenges related to seeking and maintaining a roster spot. The findings are also consistent with Fiske’s five core motives and earlier adaptation sub-strategies, in addition to uncovering three novel sub-strategies (i.e., understanding one’s performance, distraction control, and trusting player agents). Implications and recommendations are provided for sport researchers and practitioners.
Mark H. Anshel and Toto Sutarso
The purpose of the present study was to conceptualize maladaptive forms of sport perfectionism by determining the factors (and items within each factor) that best describe this construct among skilled male and female athletes. The sample consisted of 217 undergraduate student athletes ranging in age from 19 to 33 years. A theory-driven four-factor, 18-item Likert-type scale, called the Sport Perfectionism Inventory (SPI), was generated for this study. The factors, each reflecting maladaptive perfectionism to an excessive degree, included the following: concern over mistakes (CM), self-criticism (SC), personal standards (PS), and negative feedback (NF). Results showed that the items were generalizable for both genders, and all correlations between factors in the scale were significant. It was concluded that these dimensions depicted maladaptive sport perfectionism as a function of gender.
Mathieu Simon Paul Meeûs, Sidónio Serpa, and Bert De Cuyper
This study examined the effects of video feedback on the nonverbal behavior of handball coaches, and athletes’ and coaches’ anxieties and perceptions. One intervention group (49 participants) and one control group (63 participants) completed the Coaching Behavior Assessment System, Coaching Behavior Questionnaire, and Competitive State Anxiety Inventory-2 on two separate occasions, with 7 weeks of elapsed time between each administration. Coaches in the intervention condition received video feedback and a frequency table with a comparison of their personal answers and their team’s answers on the CB AS. Repeated-measures ANOVAs showed that over time, athletes in the intervention group reported significantly less anxiety and perceived their coaches significantly more positively compared with athletes in the nonintervention condition. Over time, coaches in the intervention group perceived themselves significantly more positively than coaches in the nonintervention condition. Compared with field athletes, goalkeepers were significantly more anxious and perceived their coaches less positively. It is concluded that an intervention using video feedback might have positive effects on anxiety and coach perception and that field athletes and goalkeepers possess different profiles.
Guy Little and Chris Harwood
This article discusses issues surrounding the potential violation of sexual boundaries in sport psychology consultancy and critically evaluates the current state of knowledge in the field. Limited discussion and research relating to this ethical issue exists within sport psychology; the discussion that has occurred has mainly focused on erotic transference and countertransference (Andersen, 2005). Research and knowledge from clinical psychology, counseling psychology, and psychotherapy proffers ideas for discussion and research into the factors that precipitate sexual boundary violations. The relevance of the controversial practice of touch as a therapeutic tool and a stimulus for sexual boundary violations is considered, alongside implications for the training of neophyte practitioners through role-playing, peer support, and supervision.
Andrew T. Wolanin and Lori A. Schwanhausser
The purpose of the present study was to investigate the impact of subclinical psychological difficulties, as assessed by the Multilevel Classification System for Sport Psychology (MCS-SP; Gardner & Moore, 2004b, 2006), on the efficacy of the Mindfulness-Acceptance-Commitment (MAC; Gardner & Moore, 2004a, 2007) performance enhancement intervention. Thirteen collegiate field hockey and volleyball athletes participated in a 7-week MAC protocol, and their results were compared to those of a control group of 7 same-sport athletes. Nonparametric analysis of the data offers additional support for MAC as a strategy for enhancing the athletic performance of collegiate athletes and suggests the importance of the accurate assessment of subclinical psychological difficulties to ensure the successful application of sport psychology interventions. In essence, these results suggest that the presence or absence of subclinical psychological difficulties may serve as a moderating factor in performance enhancement efforts.
Annemarie Schumacher Dimech and Roland Seiler
Social anxiety is a common psychological complaint that can have a significant and long-term negative impact on a child’s social and cognitive development. In the current study, the relationship between sport participation and social anxiety symptoms was investigated. Swiss primary school children (N =201), parents, and teachers provided information about the children’s social anxiety symptoms, classroom behavior, and sport involvement. Gender differences were observed on social anxiety scores, where girls tended to report higher social anxiety symptoms, as well as on sport activity, where boys engaged in more sport involvement. MANCOVAs with gender as covariant showed no differences in social anxiety symptoms between children involved in an extracurricular sport and those not engaged in sport participation. Nevertheless, children engaged in team sports displayed fewer physical social anxiety symptoms than children involved in individual sports.
Jane Lee Sinden
The present study examines Foucault’s (1977) concept of normalization as it applies to the emotions of female elite amateur rowers. Specifically, this study sought to understand how beliefs about emotion, developed through the normalization process, may coerce athletes to continue to train even when physically unhealthy. Interviews were conducted with 11 retired elite amateur female rowers who suffered health problems while training but continued training despite these health problems. Interpretation of the data suggests that the rowers suppressed emotions to avoid appearing mentally weak, negative, or irrational, despite needing to express their concerns about training volumes and health issues to minimize deleterious effects that continued training eventually had on their health.