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Sport Preference: A Self-Presentational Analysis

Edward K. Sadalla, Darwyn E. Linder, and Bradley A. Jenkins

This study was designed to explore cognitive and motivational factors that underlie preferences for particular sports. Based upon self-presentational theory, it was assumed that sports constitute a symbol system that communicates something about the participant's personality and identity. Individuals may learn to prefer those sports whose symbolism is appropriate to their desired social identity. In order to explore this premise, subjects were asked to rate the participants of five different sports (bowling, skiing, golf, tennis, motocross) on 70 personality and identity dimensions. Results indicated that stereotypes concerning the participants in each sport are widely shared, and that specific identity dimensions are associated with each sport.

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Effects of Pain on Motor Performance

Bottom W. Brewer, Judy L. Van Raalte, and Darwyn E. Linder

The effects of experimentally induced pressure pain on the performance of a weight lifting task, a simple golf putting task, and a complex golf putting task were examined in male college students. It was found that pain did not affect performance of the weight lifting task, slightly hampered performance of the simple putting task, and severely hampered performance of the complex putting task. Because the adverse effects of pain increased with task complexity, the findings are consistent with the notion mat pain is a form of arousal and mat pain affects performance in a manner similar to arousal. Limitations of the present experiments and directions for future research are discussed.

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Shrinking Jocks: Derogation of Athletes Who Consult a Sport Psychologist

Darwyn E. Linder, David R. Pillow, and Raymond R. Re»©

Two experiments tested the hypothesis that athletes who consult a sport psychologist to improve performance are derogated by the public compared to athletes who attempt to resolve the same issues by working with their coaches. In the first experiment a college quarterback was reported to have worked with either his coaches or a sport psychologist on improving his consistency. The primary dependent variable was how strongly subjects would recommend drafting the player in question. There was a significant main effect for the coach versus sport psychologist variable, no main effect for the type of problem, and no interaction effect. A set of 10 bipolar scales were analyzed to explore the attributions associated with the draft rating. The second experiment investigated whether the negative halo effect would occur in other sports and apply to players in peripheral as well as central positions. The results indicated that the negative halo effect occurred for a basketball guard on the draft rating but not for a center, a pitcher, or an outfielder. However, a MANOVA of the 10 scales revealed a main effect for the consultant variable. The results of the two experiments were discussed in relation to theories of deviance and stigmatization.

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Perceptions of Sport-Oriented Professionals: A Multidimensional Scaling Analysis

Judy L. Van Raalte, Britton W. Brewer, Darwyn E. Linder, and Nina DeLange

A multidimensional scaling analysis was used to investigate the psychological structure underlying college students’ perceptions of 12 practitioners: sport psychologist, clinical psychologist, psychotherapist, coach, psychiatrist, counselor, performance consultant, nutritionist, sports medicine specialist, strength coach, hypnotist, and technical equipment advisor. For this analysis, 200 male and female undergraduates completed 66 scales rating the psychological similarity between all possible pairs of the 12 practitioners. The R2 of .84 and stress value of .17 indicated that a two-dimensional solution was the best fit for the similarity ratings. The first dimension was identified as separating practitioners specializing in the mental aspects of performance from those specializing in the physical aspects of performance. The second dimension separated sport practitioners from nonsport practitioners. Interestingly, subjects perceived sport psychologists as being concerned with mental, nonsport issues. The results are discussed in terms of the relationships among the various practitioners.

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Sport Psychology Service Delivery: Implementation Within the University Community

Steven J. Petruzzello, Daniel M. Landers, Darwyn E. Linder, and Don R. Robinson

In this paper we outline a sport psychology service delivery program that has been implemented at Arizona State University. We feel this is a unique program in that it is housed within, and funded by, the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics. The program has four major components: (a) an undergraduate psychological skills course, (b) psychological skills training programs for athletic teams and small groups of athletes, (c) individual psychological consultation for athletes, and (d) psychological skills seminars and consultations with coaches. Each of these components is explained in detail. In addition, information is presented regarding the future directions for the program.

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A Negative Halo for Athletes Who Consult Sport Psychologists: Replication and Extension

Darwyn E. Linder, Britton W. Brewer, Judy L. Van Raalte, and Nina De Lange

Three studies are reported that replicate and extend previous work showing that athletes who consult a sport psychologist are derogated relative to athletes who work with their coaches on the same problem. In the first study, a multidimensional-scaling analysis was conducted to explore the psychological structure underlying perceptions of 12 sport practitioner professionals. Two dimensions, mental/physical and sport/nonsport, provided the best fit for both male and female subjects. The second and third studies, using different subject populations, were conducted to replicate previous findings and to explore the mediating processess involved. In both experiments, subjects were asked to indicate how strongly they would recommend drafting a college baseball, basketball, or football player who had worked with a coach, a sport psychologist, or a psychotherapist to improve performance. Male undergraduates and Lions Club members gave athletes who consulted sport psychologists or psychotherapists significantly lower draft ratings than athletes who consulted their coaches.

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NCAA Division II College Football Players' Perceptions of an Athlete Who Consults a Sport Psychologist

Judy L. Van Raalte, Britton W. Brewer, Devon D. Brewer, and Darwyn E. Linder

Study 1 was conducted to explore athletes' perceptions of an athlete who consults a sport psychologist. Football players from two NCAA Division II colleges, one with and one without athletic counseling/sport psychology services, were asked to indicate how strongly they would recommend drafting a quarterback who had worked with his coaches, a sport psychologist, or a psychotherapist to improve his performance. Results indicated that in neither college did athletes derogate other athletes who were said to have consulted sport psychologists. Study 2 was conducted to examine athletes' perceptions of various sport and mental health professionals. Similarity judgments of the practitioners were analyzed using correspondence analysis, and rankings of the practitioners on three dimensions (expertise in sport-related, mental, and physical issues) were analyzed using cultural consensus analysis. Consistent with past research, these three variables were salient factors in subjects' similarity judgments of the practitioners.

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Peak Performance and the Perils of Retrospective Introspection

Britton W. Brewer, Judy L. Van Raalte, Darwyn E. Linder, and Nancy S. Van Raalte

Three experiments were conducted to determine which remembered qualities of the peak performance state are robust and to investigate whether recall biases may affect accounts of peak experiences. In the first experiment, introductory psychology students rated psychological characteristics of their best, average, and worst sport performances. Focused attention and confidence were the qualities most strongly identified with peak performance. The second experiment replicated and extended these findings in a sample of intercollegiate cross-country runners and tennis players. In the third experiment, subjects (a) completed a pursuit rotor task; (b) were randomly assigned to receive success, failure, or no feedback; and (c) rated their psychological state during performance. Results indicated that the bogus performance feedback significantly affected ratings of psychological states experienced during performance. Subjects given success feedback perceived themselves as being more confident and focused on the task than subjects given failure feedback. Implications of these findings for research and practice are discussed.

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A Psychometric Evaluation of the Sports Inventory for Pain

John B. Bartholomew, Darwyn E. Linder, Britton W. Brewer, Judy L. Van Raalte, Allen E. Cornelius, and Shannon M. Bart

This investigation was designed to assess the validity of the Sports Inventory for Pain (SIP; Meyers, Bourgeois, Stewart, & LeUnes, 1992). Study 1 used SIP responses to predict three objective measures of pain coping: pain threshold, pain tolerance, and the perception of a fixed, submaximal level of painful stimulation. Participants were 70 undergraduate volunteers (35 females, 35 males). Although two SIP subscales (Cognitive and Body Awareness) were related to at least one pain measure, another subscale (Coping) was negatively related to pain tolerance (opposite of predictions), and the composite HURT scores were not related to any of the pain measures. In Study 2,41 participants (31 females, 10 males) completed a wall sit (phantom chair) task and the SIP approximately 1 month after initially filling out the SIP. Test-retest reliabilities of the SIP were acceptable (average r = .75), but responses on the SIP did not predict performance on the painful physical endurance task. In Study 3, 54 participants (17 females, 37 males) completed the SIP approximately 1 month after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction. SIP scores were not significantly correlated with measures of rehabilitation adherence and functional outcome at approximately 6 months postsurgery. Taken together, these three studies provide marginal support for the validity of the SIP and raise questions about the utility of the SIP as a predictor of participants’ ability to function while experiencing pain.