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Jihyun Lee, Seung Ho Chang and Jerred Jolin

The motor and social skill difficulties experienced by many children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) can create challenges when participating in age appropriate physical activity contexts. Although behavioral interventions can increase the general social communicative skills of children with ASD, often the skills targeted are not relevant to physical activity contexts. Thus, this pilot study utilized a movement-based intervention program to support children with ASD in learning both social and movement skills that are relevant to physical activity contexts. Nineteen children with ASD with a mean age of 9.3 (±3.0) years participated in this program for 8 weeks, twice a week, at a recreation center as an afterschool activity. Six object control skills were selected and tested before and after the intervention because these gross motor skills were considered to elicit human interactions and place demands on social skills. Ten social skills were selected, aligned to each program context, taught, and evaluated. This intervention resulted in significant improvements in object-control skills for the participants. Additionally, there were significantly more participants who demonstrated improvements in their performance of the target social skills than who did not demonstrate improvements. These preliminary findings provide support for the feasibility of developing interventions that address social skill deficits in the context of physically active settings for children with ASD.

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Kendra Nelson Ferguson, Craig Hall and Alison Divine

The study aimed to determine whether athletes who practice biofeedback are able to self-regulate by reaching resonance frequency and gaining physiological control quicker than if practice time integrates imagery or a rest period. Intervention effectiveness (e.g., intervention length, time spent training) was also explored. Twenty-seven university athletes were assigned to one of three groups: (a) biofeedback (i.e., continuous training), (b) biofeedback/imagery (i.e., interspersed with imagery), and (c) biofeedback/rest (i.e., interspersed with a rest period). Five biofeedback sessions training respiration rate, heart rate variability, and skin conductance were conducted. A repeated-measure analysis of variance showed a significant interaction between groups over time (p ≤ .05) for respiration rate, heart rate variability, and skin conductance, indicating that resonance frequency and physiological control was regained following imagery or a rest period. Postmanipulation check data found intervention length and training time to be sufficient. Combining imagery with biofeedback may optimize management of psychophysiological processes.

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Bart Reynders, Stef Van Puyenbroeck, Eva Ceulemans, Maarten Vansteenkiste and Gert Vande Broek

Building on recent self-determination theory research differentiating controlling coaching into a demanding and domineering approach, this study examined the role of both approaches in athletes’ motivational outcomes when accompanied by autonomy support or structure. Within team-sport athletes (N = 317; mean age = 17.67), four sets of k-means cluster analyses systematically pointed toward a four-cluster solution (e.g., high–high, high–low, low–high, and low–low), regardless of the pair of coaching dimensions used. One of the identified coaching profiles involved coaches who are perceived to combine need-supportive and controlling behaviors (i.e., high–high). Whereas combining need-supportive and domineering behaviors (i.e., high–high) yields lower autonomous motivation and engagement compared with a high need-support profile (i.e., high–low), this is less the case for the combination of need-supportive and demanding behaviors (i.e., high–high). This person-centered approach provides deeper insights into how coaches combine different styles and how some forms of controlling coaching yield a greater cost than others.

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Dan Cason, Minkyo Lee, Jaedeock Lee, In-Sung Yeo and Edward J. Arner

This study examined how the legalization of sports wagering, in association with several factors (i.e., gender, motivations, and fandom), has impacted gambling behavior, interests in sport, and sport-related consumption (e.g., media, ticket sales) using a sample of active gamblers above the age of 21 (N = 58). The findings showed that economic motivation significantly predicted gambling behavior, interests in sports, and sport-related consumption, while fandom did not. People who are motivated by money are more likely to wager on sport and consume sport. However, being a sport fan or not does not impact those variables. Based on the results of the current study, it could be suggested that, since sports wagering was recently legalized, sport organizations should move quickly to attract new and potential market segments (e.g., gamblers).

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Yonghwan Chang, Vicki Schull and Lisa A. Kihl

Attempts were made to explore the value of the multiple social identities approach in reducing the detrimental effects of stereotype threats in the context of spectator sports. A total of 150 females were recruited for a laboratory experiment. The following manipulations were implemented: (a) stereotype threat, (b) threat along with the implicit team identification activation, and (c) control. The results revealed that females in the threat condition showed a reduced level of psychological well-being; paradoxically, negative stereotypes positively influenced their self-esteem. The activation of implicit team identification alleviated the detrimental consequences of threat by inhibiting the spreading activation of harmful stereotypes regarding women in sports. The main theoretical frameworks of this study consisted of the process account of stereotype threat suggested in cognitive psychology. The authors attempted to offer a stronger understanding of the underlying mental processes of stereotype threat on women as well as an effective means to deal with its detrimental consequences.

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Alisia G.T.T. Tran

With the aim of supporting anxiety screening of student-athletes, this study examined the psychometric performance of the GAD-7 and GAD-2 for assessing anxiety and other clinical mental health concerns (depression, past-year and recent suicidality) in student-athletes. Data from intercollegiate varsity athletes (N = 7,584) were drawn from the Healthy Minds Study. Reliability estimates were good in the sample. Area under the curve values were excellent for anxiety and fair to good for depression and suicidality. Across all clinical indicators, a cutoff of 6 (GAD-7) and 2 (GAD-2), respectively, yielded the most balanced sensitivity and specificity rates. Both measures positively correlated with functional impairment, academic impact, and perceived mental health and negatively correlated with positive mental health. Overall, results supported the reliability, accuracy, and construct validity of the GAD-7 and GAD-2 in a national student-athlete sample. Discussion focuses on clinical implications and practical usage of the GAD-7 and GAD-2 with student-athletes.

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Jeffrey J. Martin

Grants play a major role in higher education, including kinesiology. However, critical commentaries on the role of external funds appear nonexistent in kinesiology. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to outline the most common criticisms of grants to stimulate a conversation in kinesiology. First, I discuss benefits of grants. Second, I examine the role of grants in higher education. Third, I discuss how external funds are not required to contribute meaningful research. Fourth, I examine how a major reason for grants, to produce research publications, often goes unfullfilled. Fifth, I show how the development of grant applications (especially unsuccessful applications) is an inefficient expenditure of resources. Sixth, I discuss how pursuing grants can be detrimental to other important academy goals. Seventh, I examine how grants may negatively influence faculty and administrator morale and quality of life. Eighth, I report on some common criticisms of the grant review process and discuss some alternative reviewing systems. Finally, I end with a brief summary and some recommendations.