In this brief autobiography, I reflect on how my childhood and adolescent experiences influenced my decision to study the psychology of sport and physical activity. I describe how my research evolved over time, my contributions to the field, and the people who were influential in my career. Finally, I offer some suggestions for how the field of kinesiology, as a whole, might engage in the future.
Deborah L. Feltz
This investigation contrasted path analysis models for 40 males and 40 females based on the predictions of Feltz's (1982) respecification model of Ban-dura' s (1977) self-efficacy theory in the approach/avoidance of two trials of a modified back dive. The hypothesized (respecified) model proposed that previous related experiences, self-efficacy, and heart rate predicted initial back-diving performance and that previous performance and self-efficacy predicted subsequent performance. The hypothesized model also proposed that self-efficacy mediates the influence of autonomic perception of arousal on performance. Results indicated that males had lower state anxiety and autonomic perception scores than females on the first trial. No differences occurred for back-diving performance, self-efficacy, or heart rate. Path analysis results indicated that the hypothesized model fit the data better for females than for males, though it left much unexplained variance for both males and females. Females showed a reciprocal relationship between self-efficacy and performance, whereas males showed a reciprocal relationship between autonomic perception and heart rate. Previous performance and self-efficacy were strong predictors of subsequent performance for both males and females.
Deborah L. Garza and Deborah L. Feltz
This study examined the effectiveness of mental practice techniques for improving figure skating performance, self-efficacy, and self-confidence for competition. Two interventions, paper freestyle drawing (PFD) and walk through on floor (WTF), were compared to a stretching control group. Participants (n = 27), ages 10 to 18 years, were members of the United States Figure Skating Association and were randomly assigned to one of the three groups. The study included procedural reliability checks such as pre- and post-manipulation checks; structured seminars; and homework workbooks. Results indicated that the two mental practice groups significantly improved their performance ratings in jumps and spins, and their competition confidence compared to the stretching control group. Results also indicated that the WTF mental practice group increased their spinning self-efficacy beliefs compared to the PFD mental practice treatment and the stretching control group.
Leapetswe Malete and Deborah L. Feltz
This study examined the effect of participation in a coaching education program compared to a control group on coaches’ perceived coaching efficacy. The program consisted of two 6-hour sessions. The Coaching Efficacy Scale was used to determine the impact of the program on perceived coaching efficacy. Forty-six Michigan high school coaches and 14 coaching preparation students were recruited for the experimental (n = 36) and control groups (n = 24) for this study. The participants were asked to respond to pretest and posttest CES questionnaires that examined how confident they were in influencing the learning and performance of their athletes in four dimensions of coaching: character building, motivation, strategy, and technique. Results showed a significant effect for a coaching education program on the perceived efficacy levels of the trained coaches compared to control coaches.
Beverly D. Ulrich and Deborah L. Feltz
In this article we present the results of the 2015 review and ranking of U.S. doctoral programs in kinesiology conducted by the National Academy of Kinesiology (NAK) and based on data for the calendar years 2010 through 2014. This is the third consecutive five-year review and represents the only continuous effort to create rankings for the field of kinesiology today. As in previous reviews, this evaluation was built, using objective measures, on a norm-referenced survey of kinesiology doctoral programs in the United States. Of the 77 programs invited to participate, 52 provided complete sets of the required data. The raw data comprised 9 faculty indices contributing 66% of the total score, and 7 doctoral student indices, which made up the remaining 34%. Raw data for individual indices were converted to normative values by first transforming them into z-scores and then converting the z-scores into T-scores, to which weightings were applied. From the total T-scores, two sets of rankings were determined: unadjusted and adjusted to number of faculty members in each program. Rankings based on total T-scores are presented as well as T-scores for individual indices for each program. We also share raw data means and standard deviations for individual variables, organized into subgroups based on total T-scores. Finally, we compare the outcomes of this review with the previous review conducted by the NAK.
Richard R Albrecht and Deborah L. Feltz
The Test of Attentional and Interpersonal Style (TAIS) was developed as an objective measure by which an individual's attentional predisposition could be identified and used to predict performance on a variety of tasks. The present study had three purposes: (a) to construct a baseball/softball batting (B-TAIS) version of each TAIS attentional subscale, (b) to compare TAIS and B-TAIS reliability, and (c) to compare TAIS and B-TAIS validity. Both instruments were administered to 29 intercollegiate baseball and softball players. The B-TAIS demonstrated slightly higher test-restest reliability on five of the six attentional subscales and was higher than the TAIS in internal consistency on all subscales. Batting performance was positively related to all B-TAIS subscales assessing effective attentional deployment and negatively related to all subscales assessing ineffective attention. Significant positive correlations also existed between B-TAIS ineffective subscale scores and competitive trait anxiety. However, these relationships were not found with the general TAIS.
Michael J. Greenspan and Deborah L. Feltz
Although sport psychologists utilize numerous interventions and techniques intended to enhance the performance of athletes in competition, the selection of those interventions has not always been based on research for which adequate validity has been established. In an attempt to provide sport psychologists with a working body of accurate knowledge and suggestions for future intervention research, an analysis and synthesis of research is presented that addresses the efficacy of different psychological interventions with athletes performing in competitive situations in the sport in which they regularly compete. From information reported in 19 published studies, covering 23 interventions, it was concluded that educational relaxation-based interventions and remedial cognitive restructuring interventions with individual athletes are, in general, effective.
Deborah L. Feltz and Daniel M. Landers
A longstanding research question in the sport psychology literature has been whether a given amount of mental practice prior to performing a motor skill will enhance one's subsequent performance. The research literature, however, has not provided any clear-cut answers to this question and this has prompted the present, more comprehensive review of existing research using the meta-analytic strategy proposed by Glass (1977). From the 60 studies yielding 146 effect sizes the overall average effect size was .48, which suggests, as did Richardson (1967a), that mentally practicing a motor skill influences performance somewhat better than no practice at all. Effect sizes were also compared on a number of variables thought to moderate the effects of mental practice. Results from these comparisons indicated that studies employing cognitive tasks had larger average effect sizes than motor or strength tasks and that published studies had larger average effect sizes than unpublished studies. These findings are discussed in relation to several existing explanations for mental practice and four theoretical propositions are advanced.
Deborah L. Feltz and Denise A. Mugno
The present investigation was designed to replicate and extend the Feltz (1982) study of the causal elements in Bandura's (1977) theory of self-efficacy. Path analysis techniques were employed to investigate the predictions based on Bandura's model of self-efficacy, along with the additional influence of autonomic perception on the approach/avoidance behavior of female college students (N = 80) attempting a modified-back dive. The Bandura model predicted a reciprocal relationship between self-efficacy and back-diving performance, and between self-efficacy and physiological arousal (heart rate). It was also predicted that autonomic perception was a better predictor of self-efficacy than was physiological arousal, but not better than previous back-diving performance. Additionally, self-efficacy was hypothesized to be the mediator of past performance accomplishments, physiological arousal, and autonomic perception on back-diving performance. Bandura's model was tested against a “full” model that included performance, autonomic perception, and actual physiological arousal, along with self-efficacy as direct causal influences of back-diving performance. Results provided greater support for the full model. Although one's self-efficacy was the major predictor of performance on Trial 1, subjects' heart rates also significantly predicted performance on Trial 1. After Trial 1, back-diving performance on a previous trial was the major predictor of performance on the next trial. Furthermore, one's perception of autonomic arousal was a significant influence on self-efficacy but not on performance. Previous back-diving performance, however, was a better predictor of self-efficacy than autonomic perception. No reciprocal relationship was found between self-efficacy and physiological arousal. Moreover, the full model explained more performance variance than did the Bandura model.
Raymond P. Harrison and Deborah L. Feltz
Sport psychology by its very title implies that it is a specialty within psychology. However, many sport psychologists have primary allegiance to other fields besides psychology, and many are not licensed or even eligible for licensing to practice psychology. Problems which have occurred for other psychological specialties are reviewed as a means of predicting conflicts which might arise between unlicensed sport psychologists and state psychology licensing boards. Several alternative responses are outlined by which sport psychologists might minimize future legal conflicts. In any event, sport psychologists should begin now to anticipate these difficulties and prepare means for dealing with them.