The purpose of this study was to utilize multiple perspectives to describe the major influences and experiences during the development of highly talented collegiate athletes. Eight NCAA Division I collegiate athletes, 12 parents, and 6 coaches participated in this study. In-depth semi-structured interviews analyzed through grounded theory analytic procedures (Strauss & Corbin, 1998) were used. Overall, it was ascertained that a favorable interaction between perceived genetic dispositions, practice, situational factors, and mental characteristics facilitated and nurtured the participants’ talent development. The importance of social support for overcoming adversity was a salient theme and should be addressed by sport psychology consultants and coaches.
Taryn K. Morgan and Peter R. Giacobbi Jr.
Peter R. Giacobbi Jr. and Robert S. Weinberg
The purposes of the present investigation were to examine the coping responses of different subgroups of athletes (e.g., high and low trait anxious athletes), and to assess the consistency of athlete’s coping behaviors across situations. Two-hundred and seventy-three athletes completed the Sport Anxiety Scale (SAS) by Smith, Smoll, & Schutz (1990) and coping assessments in trait and state versions of the sport adapted COPE (MCOPE) by Crocker and Graham (1995). The state coping measures assessed coping responses of situations for which the athletes actually experienced. The results of three separate, doubly multivariate, repeated measures, MANOVA’s showed that high trait anxious athletes responded to stressful situations using different coping behaviors (e.g., denial, wishful thinking, and self-blame) than the low trait anxious athletes. In addition, coping appears to be more stable than situationally variable as Pearson correlational coefficients computed between the three measures ranged from 0.53 to 0.80. The results are discussed with regard to theoretical, research, and applied issues.
Peter R. Giacobbi Jr., Artur Poczwardowski, and Peter Hager
A pragmatic research philosophy is introduced that embraces mixed-method approaches to applied research questions. With its origins in the work of Peirce (1984), James (1907), Dewey (1931), and contemporary support from Rorty (1982, 1990,1991), pragmatism emphasizes the practical problems experienced by people, the research questions posited, and the consequences of inquiry. As a way to highlight applications of pragmatism in sport psychology, pragmatism is compared to constructivism and positivism in terms of philosophical underpinnings and methodological applications. The pragmatic researcher is sensitive to the social, historical, and political context from which inquiry begins and considers morality, ethics, and issues of social justice to be important throughout the research process. Pragmatists often use pluralistic methods during multiphase research projects. Exemplar design types are discussed that logically cohere to a pragmatic research philosophy.
Peter R. Giacobbi Jr.
Column-editor : Thomas W. Kaminski
Peter R. Giacobbi Jr., Michael Stancil, Brent Hardin, and Lance Bryant
The present study examined links between physical activity and quality of life experienced by individuals with physical disabilities recruited from a wheelchair user’s basketball tournament. The participants included 12 male and 14 female adults between the ages of 18–54 (M = 31.12, SD = 10.75) who all reported one or more condition(s) that impacted their daily living. They were administered the Physical Activity Scale for Individuals with Physical Disabilities (Washburn, Weimo, McAuley, Frogley, & Figoni, 2002) and in-depth interviews focused on their physical activity experiences and evaluations about their quality of life. Grounded theory analyses (Charmaz, 2000, 2002) revealed that individuals who use wheelchairs perceived a number of psychological, social, and health benefits associated with physical activity involvement. The participants’ evaluations and descriptions of their physical activity experiences appeared to support self-efficacy beliefs, feelings of empowerment, and motivation for continued involvement. Firstperson descriptions are presented to demonstrate how and why physical activity behaviors were perceived to enhance the quality of the participants’ lives.
Peter R. Giacobbi Jr.
Column-editor : Thomas W. Kaminski
Peter R. Giacobbi Jr., Frederick Dietrich, Rebecca Larson, and Lesley J. White
The purpose of this study was to evaluate perceptions of quality of life after a 4-month progressive resistance training program for individuals with multiple sclerosis (MS). A second purpose was to examine participants’ views about factors that facilitated or impeded exercise behavior. Qualitative interviews were conducted with eight females (Mage = 49.86, SD = 6.94) with relapsing remitting MS. Audio-tape recorded interviews were transcribed verbatim and coded. Walking performance improved (M = 13.08%, SD = 7.11). All participants perceived improvements in muscular strength and endurance while six indicated improvements in walking endurance and performance in tasks of daily living. Social benefits of participation were discussed by seven participants including interactions in the exercise environment. We concluded that supervised resistance training may promote improvements in QOL for women with relapsing remitting MS.
Bang Hyun Kim, Roberta A. Newton, Michael L. Sachs, Peter R. Giacobbi Jr., and Joseph J. Glutting
The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of a 6-wk intervention that used guided relaxation and exercise imagery (GREI) to increase self-reported leisure-time exercise behavior among older adults. A total of 93 community-dwelling healthy older adults (age 70.38 ± 8.15 yr, 66 female) were randomly placed in either a placebo control group or an intervention group. The intervention group received instructions to listen to an audio compact disk (CD) containing a GREI program, and the placebo control group received an audio CD that contained 2 relaxation tracks and instructions to listen to music of their choice for 6 wk. Results revealed that listening to a GREI CD for 6 wk significantly increased self-reported leisure-time exercise behaviors (p = .03). Further exploration of GREI and its effects on other psychological variables related to perceived exercise behaviors may substantiate its effectiveness.
Peter R. Giacobbi Jr., Matthew P. Buman, Kimberly J. Romney, Monica R. Klatt, and Mari J. Stoddard
The purpose of this review was to evaluate the scope, impact, and methods of research funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in kinesiology departments. Information was obtained from university websites, the Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tool (RePORT), PubMed, Google Scholar, and Journal Citation Reports (JCR) from the Institute of Scientific Information (ISI) Web of Knowledge. Abstracts from 2,227 published studies funded by the NIH were reviewed. The National Institute on Aging funded the largest portion of grants. Metabolic functioning, the nervous system, pathology, and cardiovascular diseases were the major foci. Human and animal studies were predominantly discovery-oriented (e.g., comparative studies, clinical research) with a large percentage of translational approaches. Recommendations for interdisciplinary research are provided.
Peter R. Giacobbi Jr., Brent Hardin, Nancy Frye, Heather A. Hausenblas, Sam Sears, and Amber Stegelin
We assessed within- and between-person associations among appraisals of daily life events, positive and negative affective states, and exercise behavior and the moderating role of personality for the exercise/affect relationship with individuals with physical disabilities. Forty-eight individuals with physical disabilities completed measures of personality and daily assessments of affect, exercise, and cognitive appraisals of life events for eight consecutive days. The results revealed that exercise behavior was associated with increased positive and decreased negative affect even when associations between daily events and affect were statistically controlled. Finally, aspects of personality, especially Neuroticism, significantly moderated the exercise/affect relationship for both positive and negative affect.