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Trevor Cote, Amy Baltzell and Robert Diehl

The present study examined college tennis players’ experience of the 6-hr sport-tailored mindfulness- and self-compassion-based intervention Mindfulness Meditation Training for Sport 2.0 (MMTS 2.0). Nine college athletes participated in individual semistructured interviews. Interview results revealed that the athletes perceived the mindfulness and self-compassions skills as valuable tools to respond optimally to adversity through observing, accepting, and offering self-compassion toward negative internal states on and off the court. The mindfulness and self-compassion skills were described as creating enhanced ability to overcome challenges and improve focus on the court and an enhanced quality of life off the court, including self-reported well-being markers. The participants also noted several challenges in completing the program (i.e., discomfort meditating, lack of independent practice, and hectic schedule as a student-athlete). These findings provide insight into how the delivery of mindfulness and self-compassion skills in a time-limited environment helps male and female athletes combat competition distress.

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Amy Baltzell, Nicole Caraballo, Kristen Chipman and Laura Hayden

This study explored how members of a Division I varsity women’s soccer team experienced a 6-week, 12 session mindfulness meditation training for sport (MMTS) program. The coaching staff and entire team participated in the MMTS program. Seven of the team members volunteered to be interviewed after their participation in the MMTS program. Thematic analysis was implemented. Most participants reported difficulty understanding the process of meditation at the start of the MMTS program. Post-MMTS, they reported an enhanced ability to accept and experience a different relationship with their emotions, both on and off the field. They also noted the importance of creating a phrase of care for self and team for cohesion purposes. Enhanced mindfulness, awareness, and acceptance of emotional experiences were attributed directly to the mindfulness training. Participants provided specific recommendations for future sport-focused mindfulness meditation programs.

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Marie Dacey, Amy Baltzell and Len Zaichkowsky

Strategies for exercise maintenance of vigorous (n=54) and moderate (n=38) regular women exercisers were compared using the Processes of Change (Marcus, Rossi et al., 1992) and Self-Efficacy scales (Marcus, Selby et al., 1992). Both groups reported highest utilization of Counterconditioning, Self-liberation, Self-reevaluation, and Reinforcement Management, as well as a high degree of exercise self-efficacy. Vigorous exercisers indicated greater utilization of Counterconditioning (p=.004) and a higher degree of self-efficacy (p=.009), whereas moderate exercisers reported higher utilization of Environmental Reevaluation (p=.028). In follow-up interviews with vigorous exercisers (n=4) and moderate exercisers (n=4), all participants reported psychological benefits of physical activity, high exercise self-efficacy, and exercising to meet personal needs. Reported differences between the two groups include physical experiences while exercising, the development of exercise behavior patterns, and social influences. Based upon this study we suggest that similarities outweigh differences in the maintenance of vigorous and moderate exercise, but certain mode-specific interventions may be warranted to enhance adherence.