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Albert V. Carron

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Albert V. Carron

The purpose of the paper was to outline (a) the present conceptual perspective associated with important constructs in the area of cohesiveness, (b) the manner in which these have been operationally defined or considered in sport research, (c) the implications and/or limitations of the sport approach, and (d) possible future directions.

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Tammy Horne and Albert V. Carron

Three major issues were examined in the present study: (a) the variables discriminating between compatible and incompatible coach-athlete dyads; (b) the relationship between coach-athlete compatibility and athlete performance; and (c) the relationship between compatibility and athlete satisfaction. Subjects were 77 coach-athlete dyads from female intercollegiate teams. Compatibility was assessed using a sport-adapted version of Schutz's (1966) Fundamental Interpersonal Relations Orientation (FIRO-B) scale and Chelladurai and Saleh's (1980) Leadership Scale for Sports (LSS). Self-ratings of the quality of the coach-athlete relationship, athlete performance, and satisfaction with the coach's leadership were obtained. There were two variables that significantly discriminated between compatible and incompatible dyads. The sole variable predicting athletes' performance perceptions was the score reflecting discrepancy between athlete perceptions and preferences on the LSS reward dimension. Variables predicting athlete satisfaction were discrepancy between athlete perceptions and preferences on the LSS dimensions of training, reward, and social support. Recommendations for future research in this area are discussed.

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Albert V. Carron and P. Chelladurai

This study attempted to identify the factors correlated with the athlete's perception of cohesiveness in individual and team sports. The five measures of cohesion used were factor analyzed and two factors were identified: individual-to-group-cohesion (composed of sense of belonging, value of membership, and enjoyment) and group-as-a-unit cohesion (composed of teamwork and closeness). These represented the dependent variables in the multiple regression design. Because cohesion is a group construct, the independent variables were chosen to reflect this aspect. They included measures of compatibility between the coach and athlete and the team and athlete as well as measures of the discrepancy in participation orientation between the coach and athlete and the team and athlete. The results supported a conclusion that cohesiveness in sport is a multidimensional construct. Further, the perception of cohesiveness is moderated by the nature of the sport task. Finally, the most important factors contributing to the perception of cohesiveness in sport teams are the discrepancies between the athlete and coach and between the athlete and team in task motivation.

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Harry Prapavessis and Albert V. Carron

One purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between cohesion and competitive state anxiety (A-state). If a cohesion-competition A-state relationship was obtained, the second purpose was to determine whether the perceived psychological benefits and/or psychological costs of cohesiveness mediate that relationship. In order to examine these issues, a sample of interactive sport-team athletes (N = 110) completed the Group Environment Questionnaire (GEQ; Carron, Widmeyer, & Brawley, 1985) and items related to the perceived psychological benefits and costs of membership in cohesive groups. In addition, athletes completed the Competitive State Anxiety Inventory–2 (CSAI-2; Martens, Burton, Vealey, Bump, & Smith, 1990) prior to competition. Results showed that cohesion was related to A-state responses (p < .004). Specifically, individuals holding higher perceptions of task cohesion reported less cognitive A-state. Results also showed that psychological costs associated with membership on cohesive teams mediates the cohesion–A-state relationship.

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Harry Prapavessis and Albert V. Carron

One purpose of the present investigation was to examine whether tennis athletes have maladaptive achievement patterns associated with learned helplessness, and whether this condition is related to gender and/or skill level. A second purpose was to determine if there is a relationship between maladaptive achievement patterns and the attributional styles used in failure performances. A sport-specific questionnaire based upon the research of Dweck and others was designed to assess the cognitive, motivational, and emotional maladaptive achievement patterns in male and female highly skilled and lesser skilled athletes enrolled in a tennis academy (N=50). Another sport-specific questionnaire based on Abramson’s attributional model was used to measure each athlete’s attributional style (i.e., locus of control, stability, globality, and importance). Results revealed that 11 subjects demonstrated maladaptive achievement patterns associated with learned helplessness. No gender or skill level differences were present. Subjects classified as helpless had a different attribution dimension style for explaining failure performances than did subjects classified as nonhelpless. Specifically, helpless subjects gave ratings that were internal, persistent, and recurrent. The results were discussed in terms of their practical implications.

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Alison J. Doherty and Albert V. Carron

Understanding the experiences of volunteers in amateur sport organizations is critical to their effective management of these nonprofit organizations. The purpose of this study was to explore cohesion in volunteer sport executive committees. Members (n = 117) of sport executive committees or boards completed a questionnaire that assessed perceptions of cohesion, individual satisfaction, effort, intent to quit, committee effectiveness, and a variety of individual (gender, committee, role, tenure) and organizational (committee, size, gender composition, frequency and length of meetings) variables. Task cohesion was found to be stronger than social cohesion. Only committee size was found to be associated with perceptions of cohesiveness; members of smaller committees perceived less social cohesion than members of medium and larger committees. Task and social cohesion predicted volunteer satisfaction and perceived committee effectiveness, while volunteer effort and intent to remain with the committee were predicted by task cohesion. The results are discussed in terms of their implication for theory and practice.

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Paul A. Estabrooks and Albert V. Carron

The study examined the relative influence of 2 forms of task cohesion on older adult exercisers’ (N = 82) self-efficacy to schedule exercise into their weekly routine. Participants had been involved with the exercise program for at least 4 months before the study began. A sequencing protocol was used to allow for task cohesion’s influence on scheduling self-efficacy. Task cohesion, as measured by the Group Environment Questionnaire, was assessed during the 1st week of exercise classes after a holiday. Scheduling self-efficacy was assessed at midprogram. Attractions to the group-task and group-integration-task cohesion were sequentially entered into a hierarchical regression analysis while recent attendance was controlled for. Results showed individual attractions to the group task accounted for most of the variance in scheduling self-efficacy. R 2 = .10, F(2,80) = 4.22,p = .02; the addition of group-integration task also significantly (p < .05) added variance. R 2 = .13. F(3, 79) = 3.79, p = .01.

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Albert V. Carron and Kevin S. Spink

The purpose of the study was to determine if cohesion could be enhanced in fitness classes through a psychological intervention program focusing on team-building concepts. University aerobics classes were randomly assigned to an experimental (n=8) or a control (n=9) condition. The instructors in the experimental condition were brought to a workshop where the potential benefits of cohesiveness for exercise classes were outlined and a conceptual model for team building was presented. Using the conceptual model as a frame of reference, the instructors established the specific interventions to be used in team building in their classes. Each class met three times a week for 13 weeks; the team-building strategies were implemented in classes in the experimental condition. Discriminant function analysis showed that the experimental (team-building) and control conditions could be differentiated on the basis of their cohesiveness, χ2(1) = 12.39, p<.001. Participants in the experimental condition expressed more individual attractions to the group task (ATG-Task) than participants in the control condition. A t test also showed that the team-building program significantly enhanced individual satisfaction, t(192) = 6.01, p<.001.

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Kerry S. Courneya and Albert V. Carron