The personal assets framework suggests that dynamic elements of (a) personal engagement in activities, (b) quality social dynamics, and (c) appropriate settings will influence an athlete’s long-term outcomes of performance, personal development, and continued participation in sport. The aim of the present study was to conduct a case study of a Norwegian age-restricted team that was successful in promoting participation, performance, and positive development for individual participants and to investigate how the dynamic elements of activities, social dynamics, and settings have led to these long-term outcomes. The results indicated that the case is a best-practice example of successful attainment of personal development and long-term participation and performance through appropriate structure and application of the dynamic elements within the personal assets framework, including enjoyable peer-led play activities and quality practice, quality relationships with teammates and coaches, and access to facilities.
Martin K. Erikstad, Bjørn Tore Johansen, Marius Johnsen, Tommy Haugen, and Jean Côté
Jonathan R. Males, John H. Kerr, and Joanne Hudson
This case study examines the personal experiences of an elite athlete, coach, and sport psychology consultant (SPC) during the athlete’s preparation and performance in a recent Olympic Games. The qualitative research details how the consultancy process was affected by the athlete’s late admission of the deteriorating relationship with his coach. The concepts of closeness, commitment, complementarity, and co-orientation provided a theoretical perspective to the SPC’s interpretation of athlete performance and the interpersonal conflict that developed between athlete and coach. The basic performance demand model provided an applied perspective. The SPC’s commentary adopts a reflexive discursive style that also focuses on the SPC’s role in the consultancy process and the effectiveness of the performance demand model materials. Five important recommendations arise from the case study, and these might inform other SPCs’ future athlete–coach consultancies and interventions.
Consulting issues that confront applied sport psychology personnel in gaining entry to working with athletic teams on a long-term basis are discussed. Barriers to entry are examined at the onset and it is emphasized that these obstacles must be overcome by all consultants. Strategies for overcoming such barriers include establishing respect and trust of key athletic personnel, gaining the head coach’s respect, knowing the sport, becoming knowledgeable of the coach’s orientation and team dynamics, gaining support at all levels of the organization, clarifying services to be provided, and making presentations to coaching staffs and athletes. Additional guidelines are discussed in an effort to better clarify the role of the applied sport psychology consultant. These include clarifying one’s own consulting needs, maintaining confidentiality, the need for open and honest communication, support demonstrated by coaches, and collecting research data while consulting.