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Scott Kretchmar

An examination of the kinds of questions we ask ourselves provides a window through which to interpret our history and imagine our future. I suggest that there are three kinds of questions—large ones, small ones, and leaky ones. Those that are identified as large and small map onto the value structures we have created for ourselves in higher education. I call these structures caste systems in which some subdisciplines are valued over others, and theoreticians stand above both practitioners and skill teachers. Leaky questions are those that cross boundaries because they cannot be effectively answered by those residing in any one area or at any one level. I argue that leaky questions generate humility, mutual respect, and incentives for collaboration. I trace my own attempts to address all three kinds of questions as a sport philosopher and conclude that our brighter future in kinesiology, including our attempts to address the harms created by the caste system, requires us to see that most of the questions we find interesting are, in fact, leaky in nature.

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Jane E. Clark

The past is prologue, writes Shakespeare in The Tempest. And there seems no better expression to capture the theme of my essay on searching the future of kinesiology in its recent past through my lens as a motor development scholar. Using the developmental metaphor of climbing a mountain amidst a range of mountains, the progressing stages of my development and that of kinesiology are recounted. Over the five-plus decades of my growth as an academic and that of kinesiology, I look for the antecedents and the constraints that shape our change and may shape the future of the field of motor development and kinesiology.

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Barbara E. Ainsworth

This paper provides reflections on my academic career in kinesiology and public health from an autobiographical perspective. Themes include the importance of movement and physical activity in my development and career choices, a recognition of the importance of physical activity for health outcomes, experiences in studying physical activity in a public health framework, and observations on kinesiology in higher education. I also reflect on the importance of the physical education and physical activity environment that brought me a sense of belonging, enjoyment, and accomplishment that has lasted throughout my career. As in sports and professional activities, I have tried my best and never given up until I felt the task was done.

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Patricia Vertinsky

In this essay, I drew upon the perspectives of Walter Benjamin’s “angel of history” in reflecting upon the history of kinesiology and the influences that led to my own academic career in kinesiology. I have outlined how my disciplinary training as a physical educator and educational historian provided the resources to propel my continuing inquiry into the inter- and cross-disciplinary (and intrinsically entangled) nature of kinesiology. Gender, nationality, training, location, and timing all had their influences on my education and job opportunities and upon building toward a career in a research university where physical education and kinesiology, by design and accident, increasingly separated from one another. From the perspective of a sport historian, I suggest that the language and pursuit of balance might be applied productively to thinking about the future of kinesiology. Sport historians can help in this mission by training a critical lens upon the ongoing traffic between nature and culture and the deep sociocultural situatedness of the science and technology practices used in kinesiology teaching and research in the 21st century. In essence, they can illuminate the historical context of the tools that now frame kinesiology’s questions and the political context in which their answers emerge.

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Philip Furley and Alexander Roth

Nonverbal behavior (NVB) plays an important role in sports. However, it has been difficult to measure, as no coding schemes exist to objectively measure NVB in sports. Therefore, the authors adapted the Body Action and Posture Coding System to the context of soccer penalties, validated it, and initially used this system (Nonverbal Behavior Coding System for Soccer Penalties [NBCSP]) to explore NVB in penalties. Study 1 demonstrated that the NBCSP had good to excellent intercoder reliability regarding the occurrence and temporal precision of NVBs. It also showed that the coding system could differentiate certain postures and behaviors as a function of emotional valence (i.e., positive vs. negative emotional states). Study 2 identified differences in NVB for successful and missed shots in a sample of penalties (time spent looking toward the goal, toward the ground, right arm movement, and how upright the body posture was). The authors discuss the utility of the coding system for different sport contexts.

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Oliver R. Runswick, Matthew Jewiss, Ben T. Sharpe, and Jamie S. North

Extensive literature has shown the effect of “quiet eye” (QE) on motor performance. However, little attention has been paid to the context in which tasks are executed (independent of anxiety) and the mechanisms that underpin the phenomenon. Here, the authors aimed to investigate the effects of context (independent of anxiety) on QE and performance while examining if the mechanisms underpinning QE are rooted in cognitive effort. In this study, 21 novice participants completed golf putts while pupil dilation, QE duration, and putting accuracy were measured. Results showed that putting to win was more accurate compared with the control (no context) condition, and QE duration was longer when putting to win or tie a hole compared with control. There was no effect of context on pupil dilation. Results suggest that, while the task was challenging, performance scenarios can enhance representativeness of practice without adding additional load to cognitive resources, even for novice performers.

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Nikita Rowley, James Steele, Steve Mann, Alfonso Jimenez, and Elizabeth Horton

Background: Exercise referral schemes in England offer referred participants an opportunity to take part in an exercise prescription in a nonclinical environment. The aim of these schemes is to effect clinical health benefits, yet there is limited evidence of schemes’ effectiveness, which could be due to the heterogeneity in design, implementation, and evaluation. Additionally, there has been no concerted effort to map program characteristics. Objective: To understand what key delivery approaches are currently used within exercise referral schemes in England. Methods: Across England, a total of 30 schemes with a combined total of 85,259 exercise referral scheme participants completed a Consensus on Exercise Reporting Template-guided questionnaire. The questionnaire explored program delivery, nonexercise components, and program management. Results: Results found that program delivery varied, though many schemes were typically 12 weeks in length, offering participants 2 exercise sessions in a fitness gym or studio per week, using a combination of exercises. Adherence was typically measured through attendance, with nonexercise components and program management varying by scheme. Conclusion: This research provides a snapshot of current delivery approaches and supports the development of a large-scale mapping exercise to review further schemes across the whole of the United Kingdom in order to provide evidence of best practice and delivery approaches nationwide.

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Mark A. Thompson, Adam R. Nicholls, John Toner, John L. Perry, and Rachel Burke

The authors investigated relationships between emotions, coping, and resilience across two studies. In Study 1a, 319 athletes completed dispositional questionnaires relating to the aforementioned constructs. In Study 1b, 126 athletes from Study 1a repeated the same questionnaires 6 months later. In Study 2, 21 athletes were randomly allocated to an emotional (e.g., pleasant or unpleasant emotions) or control group and undertook a laboratory-based reaction-time task across three time points. Questionnaires and salivary cortisol samples were collected before and after each performance with imagery-based emotional manipulations engendered during the second testing session. Partial longitudinal evidence of the broaden-and-build effects of pleasant emotions was found. Pleasant emotions may undo lingering cognitive resource losses incurred from previous unpleasant emotional experiences. In Study 2, pleasant and unpleasant emotions had an immediate and sustained psychophysiological and performance impact. Taken together, this research supports the application of broaden-and-build theory in framing emotional interventions for athletes.

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Deborah L. Feltz

In this brief autobiography, I reflect on how my childhood and adolescent experiences influenced my decision to study the psychology of sport and physical activity. I describe how my research evolved over time, my contributions to the field, and the people who were influential in my career. Finally, I offer some suggestions for how the field of kinesiology, as a whole, might engage in the future.