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Reflections on the Application of Reflective Practice for Supervision in Applied Sport Psychology

Zöe Knowles, David Gilbourne, Victoria Tomlinson, and Ailsa G. Anderson

In the UK, sport psychologists are presently supervised under the auspices of the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES). In the present article, reflective practice is evaluated as a process that can facilitate the supervisory exercise in applied sport psychology (Anderson, Knowles, & Gilbourne, 2004). The material presented was collated via a 3-year longitudinal supervisory process based on the process of staged reflection (Knowles, Gilbourne, Borrie, & Nevill, 2001). The benefits of staged reflective development in the supervision process are highlighted, while differentiating between reflective techniques both in and on action. The present article also considers how different writing styles develop through the different phases of discussion and revisits the challenges associated with representing reflective practice.

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Volume 20 (2006): Issue 4 (Dec 2006)

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The Adaptation to the Mainstream in Elite Sport: A Canadian Aboriginal Perspective

Robert J. Schinke, Ginette Michel, Alain P. Gauthier, Patricia Pickard, Richard Danielson, Duke Peltier, Chris Pheasant, Lawrence Enosse, and Mark Peltier

Cultural sport psychology (CSP) is a recent attempt by researchers to better understand respondents from marginalized cultures. CSP research provides useful suggestions of how to work effectively with unique populations for coaches and sport science practitioners. This paper addresses the struggles and adaptation strategies of 23 (16 male, 7 female) elite Aboriginal Canadian athletes. National and international level athletes elicited from seven sport disciplines and three Canadian provinces were interviewed with a semistructured protocol. Indications are that Aboriginal Canadian athletes engage in two higher order types of adaptation: (a) self-adaptation and (b) adapted environment. The study was developed, analyzed, and coauthored with an Aboriginal community appointed research team. Implications, such as the use of ongoing reflective practice, are proposed for aspiring CSP sport researchers and practitioners.

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Coaching Adaptation: Techniques Learned and Taught in One Northern Canadian Region

Alain P. Gauthier, Robert J. Schinke, and Patricia Pickard

This study addresses the development of adaptation techniques in one northern Canadian region based on the views of 14 National and International elite coaches. Respondents were from nine different sports and averaged 17.1 yrs of accumulated coaching experience (Range: 8-30 yrs). Data were gathered chronologically using structured open-ended questionnaires, focus groups, and afterwards, follow-up in-depth semi-structured interviews. Content was analyzed to uncover emergent themes. The respondents indicated that elite coaches from their region learn adaptation by (a) cooperating, (b) reframing positively, and (c) coping with their limitations. Further, the respondents elucidated how they use geographical limitations to teach two context specific adaptation skills to aspiring athletes and coaches: (a) psychological adaptation and (b) physical adaptation. Generic coaching strategies across geographical regions are questioned and suggestions regarding elite coaching in small communities are provided.

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Countertransference and the Self-Aware Sport Psychologist: Attitudes and Patterns of Professional Practice

William Winstone and Misia Gervis

The literature in psychotherapy and sport psychology has supported the importance of self-awareness and countertransference management (Ellis, 2001; Leahy, 2001; Van Raalte & Andersen, 2000) and its applicability in all psychological settings (Hayes, 2004). This study was an audit of (n = 58) accredited UK sport psychology practitioners that explored the importance they attached to self-awareness and their behavior in practice that supported the management of these concerns. Results indicated that practitioners regarded self-insight and self-integration as important (Mdn = 4), but relied upon themselves and informal peer networks rather than regular supervision for professional support. Most practitioners never (Mdn=1) used counseling or therapy for personal support. Recommendations are made for piloting post-accreditation professional supervision in sport psychology and developing the provision of general counseling and sport psychology sessions for trainees.

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A Qualitative Investigation into Experiences of the Role Episode in Soccer

Stephen D. Mellalieu and Scott W. Juniper

This study explored the phenomenon of the role episode in sport. Performance profiles and interviews were conducted with 11 male collegiate soccer players to identify the factors that contributed to the formation of positive perceptions of role states and the consequences for the individual and team. Role clarity developed via a combination of learning through implicit experiences in the sport and explicit instruction from role senders. Role acceptance formed through the focal person’s perceptions of the assigned performance role and the role sender. Positive perceptions of role states were suggested to improve performance by enhancing individual and group-related variables, including role satisfaction, group cohesion, and collective efficacy. The findings highlight the significance of understanding the factors that contribute to a positive role episode in sport and present implications for future team-building interventions.

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Risk Factors for Heavy Drinking in College Freshmen: Athletic Status and Adult Attachment

Diana M. Doumas, Rob Turrisi, and Dale A. Wright

This study examined athletic status and adult attachment as risk factors for high-risk drinking in 249 freshmen. Results of hierarchical regression analyses indicated attachment avoidance was related positively to high-risk drinking for former high school and collegiate athletes, but related inversely to high-risk drinking for nonathletes. Further, athletes with high attachment avoidance reported the highest levels of heavy drinking and associated consequences. Findings suggest athletes with high attachment avoidance may use drinking as a coping strategy to manage discomfort associated with social situations and this strategy is likely an extension of patterns established in high school. Clinical implications include providing prevention programs for both high school and collegiate athletes, with an emphasis on targeting interpersonal avoidance and discomfort with relationships.

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The Sport Psychologist’s Handbook: A Guide for Sport-Specific Performance Enhancement

Tiz A. Arnold

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Sport Psychology Library - Bowling: The Handbook of Bowling Psychology

Christopher Mesagno

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Swimming Coaches’ Perceptions of Sexual Exploitation in Sport: A Preliminary Model of Role Conflict and Role Ambiguity

Joy D. Bringer, Celia H. Brackenridge, and Lynne H. Johnston

Bringer, Brackenridge, and Johnston (2002) identified role conflict and ambiguity as an emerging theme for some swimming coaches who felt under increased scrutiny because of wider concerns about sexual exploitation in sport (Boocock, 2002). To further understand this emerging theme, 3 coaches who had engaged in sexual relations with athletes, or had allegations of abuse brought against them, took part in in-depth interviews. Grounded theory method (Strauss & Corbin, 1998) was adopted to explore how these coaches responded differently to increased public scrutiny. The findings are discussed in relation to how sport psychologists can help to shape perceptions of coaching effectiveness that are congruent with child protection measures. Reflective practice is proposed as one method by which coaches may embed child and athlete protection in their definition of effective coaching, rather than seeing it as an external force to which they must accommodate.