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Jeffery P. Simons

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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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Tara K. Scanlan, Paul J. Carpenter, Marci Lobel and Jeffery P. Simons

The positive emotion of enjoyment has been shown to be an important ingredient to motivation in youth and elite sport. This article first summarizes the progress made to date in developing and measuring the enjoyment construct, and in understanding its sources and motivational consequences. Then a field study is presented that focuses on sources of enjoyment in a large youth sample (N=1,342) that is diverse image, ethnicity, and gender. Factor analytic and multiple regression techniques were used to determine categories and predictors of sport enjoyment. The significant sources of enjoyment for these participants were greater effort and mastery, positive team interactions and support, and positive coach support and satisfaction with the players’ seasonal performance. These findings accounted for 47% of the variance in sport enjoyment and shed light on the predictors of this important affect for a diverse group of athletes.

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Tara K. Scanlan, Paul J. Carpenter, Jeffery P. Simons, Greg W. Schmidt and Bruce Keeler

This article introduces a sport-specific theoretical model of commitment. Sport commitment is defined as a psychological state representing the desire or resolve to continue sport participation. The Sport Commitment Model proposes that sport commitment is determined by sport enjoyment, involvement alternatives, personal investments, social constraints, and involvement opportunities. Greater sport enjoyment, personal investments, social constraints, involvement opportunities, and less attractive involvement alternatives are predicted to lead to higher levels of sport commitment. Constitutive definitions were established for each of the model's components, and questionnaire items were developed. Results from the first empirical test of the model conducted with girls (n = 95) and boys (n = 83) participating in a Little League program showed that the questionnaire items formed reliable scales. Correlational analyses demonstrated that several predictors were related to sport commitment as hypothesized. Stepwise regression findings revealed that sport enjoyment and personal investments were the dominant predictors of commitment for this sample. Together, these two model components accounted for 58% of the sport commitment variance.

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Tara K. Scanlan, Paul J. Carpenter, Jeffery P. Simons, Greg W. Schmidt and Bruce Keeler

This article presents our progress in developing a set of survey measures to assess constructs of the Sport Commitment Model in the youth-sport domain. Initial item development was accomplished through extensive literature reviews and the expert evaluations of research professionals, teachers, and young athletes. The items were then examined empirically with three separate samples numbering 140, 178, and 1342 athletes, respectively. For the first two samples, items formed reliable scales for each of the model constructs and separated into distinct factors largely as hypothesized. For the third sample, structural-equation modeling was employed and results supported the measurement of four constructs, with the other two constructs held from the measurement model because of item limitations. Overall, results of the three samples indicate reliable measures that can be used in tests of the Sport Commitment Model across samples of youth-sport athletes representing diversity in age, gender, and ethnicity.

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Paul J. Carpenter, Tara K. Scanlan, Jeffery P. Simons and Marci Lobel

This article presents the results of a structural equation modeling analysis of the Sport Commitment Model. This model proposes that commitment is determined by sport enjoyment, involvement alternatives, personal investments, social constraints, and involvement opportunities. Preliminary analyses demonstrated that the model was applicable to both younger (< 12 years old) and older (> 13 years old) athletes, to males and females, and to three different team sports. Structural equation modeling results demonstrated that the proposed model was a good fit of the data (CFI = .981), with the findings accounting for 68% of the commitment variance. As predicted, greater sport enjoyment, involvement opportunities, and the personal investments of time and effort led to greater commitment. Counter to our initial hypothesis, commitment was negatively related to social constraints. Measurement problems led to the involvement alternatives component being excluded from tests of the model presented here, but not from the theoretical model.