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Athletes’ Broad Dimensions of Dispositional Perfectionism: Examining Changes in Life Satisfaction and the Mediating Role of Sport-Related Motivation and Coping

Patrick Gaudreau and Sheilah Antl

This study examined the associations of dispositional perfectionism, contextual motivation, sport-related coping, goal attainment, and changes in life satisfaction during a sport competition. A sample of 186 athletes completed measures of dispositional perfectionism, contextual motivation, and life satisfaction at Time 1 (before a competition) as well as measures of coping, goal attainment, and life satisfaction at Time 2 (after a competition). Results of structural equation modeling supported a model in which self-determined and non-self-determined motivation partially mediated the relationships between different dimensions of perfectionism and coping. It was also shown that disengagement-oriented coping mediated the negative relationship between evaluative concerns perfectionism and change in life satisfaction. In a similar way, goal attainment mediated the relationships of both task- and disengagement-oriented coping with change in life satisfaction. For the most part, these results are consistent with the motivational properties of evaluative concerns and personal standards perfectionism and with literature regarding coping and self-determination theory.

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A Point-by-Point Analysis of Performance in a Fencing Match: Psychological Processes Associated with Winning and Losing Streaks

Julie Doron and Patrick Gaudreau

This study aimed to revisit the complex nature of serial dependency of performance during a match, examining the prospective associations between psychological processes and subsequent performance at the within-person level of analysis, and explore whether psychological processes are associated with the likelihood of winning series of points. A process-oriented sequential approach was used with 16 elite fencers during a simulated competition. Multilevel regression analyses revealed that serial dependency of performance fluctuates within a match. Results of a Bayesian multilevel structural equation model showed that prior performance subsequently influenced psychological processes. Although psychological processes did not predict performance in the subsequent point, successive winnings were associated with higher perceived control and task-oriented coping and lower negative affectivity compared with both losing streaks and nonstreaks. Overall, serial dependencies of performance are nonstationary during a match whereas psychological processes significantly differ in episodes of winning after winning versus losing after losing.

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Attitudes of Sport Fans Toward the Electronic Sign-Stealing Scandal in Major League Baseball: Differing Associations With Perfectionism and Excellencism

Patrick Gaudreau and Benjamin J.I. Schellenberg

The winners of the 2017 World Series were found guilty of illegally using electronic devices to steal the signs of their opponents. Many but not all sport fans negatively reacted to this cheating incident. We relied on the model of excellencism and perfectionism to determine if perfection strivers are less unfavorable toward electronic sign stealing (cheating) compared with excellence strivers. Sport fans (N = 321) completed a measure of excellencism and perfectionism. We used three different approaches to measure attitudes toward electronic sign stealing in baseball. Results of a multivariate multiple regression showed that sport fans who are perfection strivers held more favorable attitudes toward electronic sign stealing compared with excellence strivers. Perfection strivers also reported higher moral disengagement and winning-at-all-cost mentality. These findings are insightful because they indicate that perfectionistic standards significantly relate to sport cheating-related attitudes once we separate excellencism from perfectionism.

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Perception of Coaching Behaviors, Coping, and Achievement in a Sport Competition

Michel Nicolas, Patrick Gaudreau, and Véronique Franche

This study examined the relationship between perceived coaching behaviors, coping strategies during a sport competition, and sport achievement. A prospective design was used in which 80 athletes from individual sports completed measures of perceived coaching behaviors two days before a competition (Time 1) and measures of coping and sport achievement within three hours after a sport competition (Time 2). As expected, results of multiple regressions indicated that supportive coaching was a positive predictor of task-oriented coping and sport achievement whereas unsupportive coaching was a positive predictor of disengagement-oriented coping. Both types of coping were significantly associated with sport achievement. Task-oriented coping was a significant partial mediator in the relation between supportive coaching and sport achievement. This study, which contributes to both the coaching and coping literatures, highlights the role of supportive coaching behaviors in the initiation of effective stress management during sport competitions.

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The Ups and Downs of Coping and Sport Achievement: An Episodic Process Analysis of Within-Person Associations

Patrick Gaudreau, Adam Nicholls, and Andrew R. Levy

This study examined the relationship between coping and sport achievement at the within-person level of analysis. Fifty-four golfers completed diary measures of coping, stress, and sport achievement after six consecutive rounds of golf. Results of hierarchical linear modeling revealed golfers’ episodic task-oriented coping and disengagement-oriented coping were associated, respectively, with their better and worst levels of subjective and objective achievement. Distraction-oriented coping was not significantly associated with achievement. These results were obtained after accounting for between-subjects differences in ability level and for within-person variations in perceived stress across both practice and competitive golf rounds. These results contribute to an emerging literature on the relationship between coping and sport achievement, and highlight the promises of an episodic process model of sport achievement to understand the transient self-regulatory factors associated with within-person variations in athletic achievement.

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A Cluster Analysis of Affective States Before and During Competition

Guillaume Martinent, Michel Nicolas, Patrick Gaudreau, and Mickaël Campo

The purposes of the current study were to identify affective profiles of athletes both before and during the competition and to examine differences between these profiles on coping and attainment of sport goals among a sample of 306 athletes. The results of hierarchical (Ward’s method) and nonhierarchical (k means) cluster analyses revealed four different clusters both before and during the competition. The four clusters were very similar at the two measurement occasions: high positive affect facilitators (n = 88 and 81), facilitators (n = 75 and 25), low affect debilitators (n = 83 and 127), and high negative affect debilitators (n = 60 and 73). Results of MANOVAs revealed that coping and attainment of sport achievement goal significantly differed across the affective profiles. Results are discussed in terms of current research on positive and negative affective states.

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Does It Matter if Sport Fans “Root for the Home Team?” A Test of the Team Identification–Social Psychological Health Model

Benjamin J.I. Schellenberg and Patrick Gaudreau

The team identification–social psychological health model outlines that fans of local sport teams are more likely to experience feelings of social connectedness compared with fans of distant teams. We tested this proposition across two sufficiently powered studies. In both studies, sport fans (Study 1: N = 291, Study 2: N = 430) completed online surveys assessing their levels of identification with a favorite sport team and social connections derived from their fandom for that team. Team localness was operationalized based on team location (Study 1) or responses to survey questions assessing team localness (Study 2). In both studies, the positive association between team identification and social connectedness was not moderated by team localness. This research contributes to the team identification–social psychological health model and our general understanding of fan behavior by showing that the social benefits of being a highly identified sport fan are not limited to fans of local teams.

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The Two Dimensions of Passion for Sport: A New Look Using a Quadripartite Approach

Benjamin J.I. Schellenberg, Jérémie Verner-Filion, Patrick Gaudreau, and Sophia Mbabaali

Research relying on the dualistic model of passion has consistently found that harmonious passion for sport is positively associated with adaptive outcomes and that obsessive passion for sport is positively associated with maladaptive outcomes. In this research, we tested if various sport outcomes were related to within-person combinations of both harmonious and obsessive passion. Three samples of athletes (total N = 1,290) completed online surveys that assessed various sport outcomes (e.g., sport enjoyment, goal attainment), along with harmonious and obsessive passion for their sport. We found that athletes were best served by having either high harmonious passion or low obsessive passion or, in many cases, high harmonious passion that was combined with low obsessive passion. These results add to our understanding of passion by showing that combinations of harmonious and obsessive passion for sport are differentially associated with indicators of a positive sport experience.

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Self-Determination, Coping, and Goal Attainment in Sport

Catherine E. Amiot, Patrick Gaudreau, and Céline M. Blanchard

The aim of the present study was to verify, during a stressful sport competition, the associations between motivational antecedents and consequences of the coping process. Using a two-wave design, we tested a model that incorporates motivational orientations, coping dimensions, goal attainment, and affective states among athletes (N = 122). Path analyses using EQS revealed that self-determination toward sport positively predicted the use of task-oriented coping strategies during a stressful sport competition, while non-self-determined motivation predicted the use of disengagement-oriented coping strategies. Task-oriented coping, in turn, was positively associated with the level of goal attainment experienced in the competition, whereas disengagement-oriented coping was negatively associated with goal attainment. Finally, level of goal attainment was positively linked to an increase in positive emotional states from pre- to postcompetition, and negatively associated with an increase in negative emotional states. Findings are discussed in light of coping frameworks, self-determination theory, and the consequences of motivational and coping processes on psychological functioning.

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Longitudinal Patterns of Stability and Change in Coping across Three Competitions: A Latent Class Growth Analysis

Benoît Louvet, Patrick Gaudreau, André Menaut, Jacques Genty, and Pascale Deneuve

An unresolved issue in the coping literature concerns the traitlike versus statelike nature of coping utilization. The aim of this study was to illustrate the benefits of moving beyond the sole reliance on mean-level and rank-order analyses in order to identify heterogeneous patterns of longitudinal stability and change in coping utilization. More specifically, this study hypothesized that not all athletes would change their coping across competitions, nor do all “changers” change in a similar manner. Male soccer players (N = 107) completed a self-reported coping measure after three competitions held over a 6-month period. Results of latent class growth modeling showed three distinct trajectories for each coping dimension (i.e., task, distraction, and disengagement coping), not only indicating linear or quadratic change, but also stability in longitudinal coping utilization. These results highlight the need to account for the multinomial heterogeneity in longitudinal coping utilization and to identify the correlates associated with distinct trajectories of change and stability of coping across competitions.