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Professional Practice: Inquiry, Innovations, and Dissemination

Edited by Mark B. Andersen

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Questionable Sensitivity: A Comment on Lee and Rotella

Mark B. Andersen

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Moving Toward Buddhist Psychotherapy in Sport: A Case Study

Campbell Thompson and Mark B. Andersen

This case study involves the progression from a cognitive-behavioral, psychological skills training approach with a rugby football player experiencing adjustment and mood disorder to a psychodynamic and interpersonal engagement with the client using themes from Buddhist psychotherapy. The study charts the development of the psychologist’s understanding of his relationships with clients and with his supervisor. We present a study of three people (i.e., the client, the psychologist, the supervisor) and how their stories and interpersonal interactions are interwoven from a Buddhist-psychodynamic perspective. We examine the influences of the dominant White culture on the male psychologist’s perceptions contrasted with the client’s background as a Pacific Islander. In addition, we present a projective test, which was central to the unfolding of this case study, designed for use with athletes. This case study is a confessional tale (Sparkes, 2002) told in the first-person from the psychologist’s viewpoint.

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The Development of Consulting Practice in Applied Sport Psychology: Some Personal Perspectives

Jeffery P. Simons and Mark B. Andersen

The history and development of applied sport psychology practice has not received the same attention and documentation as that of academic sport psychology. After a brief introduction to the literature on the history and professional development of applied sport psychology, some personal perspectives from consultants who have been practicing “in the field” over the last two to four decades are provided. Eleven well-known practitioners discuss how they got started, how their consulting has developed, what significant experiences they have had, and what lessons they have learned along the way. They relate their views on the progression of professional practice and what the future may hold. Finally, they offer some encouragement, cautions, and words of wisdom for fellow and future colleagues in sport psychology consulting.

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Mentoring in Sport Psychology: Students’ Perceptions of Training in Publication and Presentation Guidelines

Brian D. Butki and Mark B. Andersen

A seven-item survey on training and ethics in publication and conference presentation was sent to 406 student members of the Association for the Advancement of Applied Sport Psychology (AAASP). Students used a 5-point scale (1 = very poor to 5 = excellent) to rate the training and experience received from advisors and professors. Items included exposure to some formal ethical guidelines of publishing and authorship, explanation of the importance of publications and conference presentations, demonstration of enthusiasm toward student publishing or presenting at conferences, and receiving appropriate authorship (e.g., first, second, third) on publications or conference presentations. Return rate was 43%. Results show that although a majority of students feel they are receiving fair to excellent training in this area, a substantial number believe their training is inadequate. This suggests a need for more formal training and guidance in publication and conference presentation for graduate students in psychology and physical education/exercise science programs.

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Supervision in the Education and Training of Sport Psychology Service Providers

Mark B. Andersen and Brian T. Williams-Rice

Supervision plays a central role in the training of sport psychologists, but little discussion of what constitutes adequate supervision of trainees and practitioners is available in the applied sport psychology literature. Broader issues of supervision, such as the training of students to become supervisors, metasupervision, and career-long collegial supervision are rarely discussed. This paper will present models of general supervision processes from training the neophyte to collegial supervision, derived primarily from clinical and counseling psychology. Included are supervising the delivery of performance-enhancement services, identifying trainee and client needs, helping the student understand transference and countertransference phenomena, and suggestions for examining the relationship between the supervisor and the supervisee. Suggestions for improving supervision include course work and/or practica in supervision processes for applied sport psychology graduate programs along with continuing education workshops at sport psychology conferences.

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When Sport Psychology Consulting Is a Means to an End(ing): Roles and Agendas When Helping Athletes Leave Their Sports

Judy L. Van Raalte and Mark B. Andersen

The authors focus on many of the complex issues that sport psychologists face when working with athletes through the process of leaving sport. They briefly review the literature on career termination to serve as a foundation for a discussion of the effects that an athlete’s career termination can have on teammates, family, and the self. The authors also explore the issue of bias and prejudice. People intimately involved in sport (sport psychologists included) often have a prejudice toward sport relative to other possible activities or goals. This bias might influence how sport psychologists listen to, interpret, and formulate athlete cases. Case examples are used to highlight the difficulties of identifying career-termination concerns and the professional and personal tensions that come with making sport career changes. With care, sport psychologists can manage career termination and related issues and effectively address the health and happiness of the athletes they serve.

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Learning Experiences Contributing to Service-Delivery Competence

David Tod, Daryl Marchant, and Mark B. Andersen

Graduates (n = 16) and teaching staff (n = 11) of Australian master’s of applied psychology programs (sport and exercise) participated in interviews about learning experiences that they believed contributed to service-delivery competence. Interviews were recorded, transcribed verbatim, and thematically content analyzed. The authors sought to enhance research credibility through data source and analyst triangulation. Participants thought the main contributions to service-delivery competence were client interactions; relationships among teaching staff, supervisors, and students; and specific events outside of the training programs. Participants considered sport psychology research and theory to be helpful when applicable to clients. The authors discuss issues arising under the major themes relating to practitioner development, such as supervisor-supervisee relationships. The results of the study have implications for future training in sport psychology, such as the mentoring of students, the grounding of practice in research and theory, and how anxiety can be minimized during role-plays.

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Using Profile of Mood States (POMS) to Monitor High-Intensity Training in Cyclists: Group versus Case Studies

David T. Martin, Mark B. Andersen, and Ward Gates

This study examined whether the Profile of Mood States questionnaire (POMS) is a useful tool for monitoring training stress in cycling athletes. Participants (n = 11) completed the POMS weekly during six weeks of high-intensity interval cycling and a one-week taper. Cycling performance improved over the first three weeks of training, plateaued during Weeks 4 and 5, decreased slightly following Week 6, and then significantly increased during the one-week taper. Neither the high-intensity interval training nor the one-week taper significantly affected total mood or specific mood states. POMS data from two cyclists who did not show improved performance capabilities during the taper (overtraining) were not distinctly unique when compared to cyclists who did improve. Also, one cyclist, who on some days had the highest total mood disturbance, responded well to the taper and produced his best personal effort during this time period. These findings raise questions about the usefulness of POMS to distinguish, at an individual level, between periods of productive and counterproductive high-intensity training.

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Tracking the Training and Careers of Graduates of Advanced Degree Programs in Sport Psychology, 1989 to 1994

Mark B. Andersen, Tim Aldridge, Jean M. Williams, and Jim Taylor

This study expanded the work of Waite and Pettit (1993) and contacted 75 graduate programs for lists of names and addresses of students who graduated between 1989 and 1994 (N = 731). Doctoral (n = 92) and master (n = 162) graduates completed a tracking survey (modified from Waite & Pettit), reporting their demographics, educational backgrounds, current positions, incomes, initial and future career goals, and supervised experiences. The majority of doctoral graduates have found positions in academia/research, and most of the master graduates were in some sport or sport psychology-related job. The majority of the master and doctoral graduates, however, reported that finding paying sport psychology work was difficult, and many expressed at least moderate levels of frustration with the progress of their sport psychology careers. The information from this study could be useful for advising current and potential graduate students about career options after graduation.