This paper examines the relationship between precompetitive affect and performance, using elements of reversal theory (Apter, 1982): a conceptual framework that incorporates a full range of pleasant and unpleasant moods. Nine elite male slalom canoeists completed questionnaires prior to each event of a season that included the world championships. Results were analyzed using a time-series model to make comparisons of each subject’s best and worst performance of the season. Predicted variations in precompetitive levels of pleasant and unpleasant mood did not occur, despite variations in subsequent performances. As predicted, good performances were preceded by low discrepancies between felt and preferred arousal levels, but there was no support for the hypothesis that a large discrepancy between perceived stress and coping efforts would precede a poor performance.
Stress, Emotion, and Performance in Elite Slalom Canoeists
Jonathan R. Males and John H. Kerr
Athlete–Coach Conflict and a Sport Psychologist Caught in the Middle: A Case Study of Consultancy During Athlete Preparation and Performance in Olympic Games Athletics
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.
Team Process and Players’ Psychological Responses to Failure in a National Volleyball Team
Jonathan R. Males, John H. Kerr, Joanne Thatcher, and Emma Bellew
The present study investigated the psychological experiences of elite athletes in a team that failed using qualitative methods informed by reversal theory. Five athletes, from a national men’s volleyball team, playing in a European tournament completed a post-game review after each of 6 games. After the tournament, each player took part in in-depth semi-structured interviews, prompted by their post-game reviews. The results indicated that unrealistic expectations, poor team motivation, a negative coaching style, and faulty team process around game performance played an important role in the failure of this team. Also, inappropriate metamotivational states and state reversals were found to have had a negative impact on team performance. Several consultant recommendations for enhancing team motivation and functioning are identified.
Do Knee Moments Normalized to Measures of Knee Cartilage Area Better Classify the Severity of Knee Osteoarthritis?
Nicholas M. Brisson, Paul W. Stratford, Saara Totterman, José G. Tamez-Peña, Karen A. Beattie, Jonathan D. Adachi, and Monica R. Maly
Investigations of joint loading in knee osteoarthritis (OA) typically normalize the knee adduction moment to global measures of body size (eg, body mass, height) to allow comparison between individuals. However, such measurements may not reflect knee size. This study used a morphometric measurement of the cartilage surface area on the medial tibial plateau, which better represents medial knee size. This study aimed to determine whether normalizing the peak knee adduction moment and knee adduction moment impulse during gait to the medial tibial bone–cartilage interface could classify radiographic knee OA severity more accurately than traditional normalization techniques. Individuals with mild (N = 22) and severe (N = 17) radiographic knee OA participated. The medial tibial bone–cartilage interface was quantified from magnetic resonance imaging scans. Gait analysis was performed, and the peak knee adduction moment and knee adduction moment impulse were calculated in nonnormalized units and normalized to body mass, body weight × height, and the medial tibial bone–cartilage interface. Receiver operating characteristic curves compared the ability of each knee adduction moment normalization technique to classify participants according to radiographic disease severity. No normalization technique was superior at distinguishing between OA severities. Knee adduction moments normalized to medial knee size were not more sensitive to OA severity.