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Stephen H. Boutcher

The effects of aerobic fitness on psychological and behavioral variables are currently receiving increased attention. However, the results of past research in these areas are equivocal, mainly due to differences in the methods used to quantify aerobic fitness and the failure to address issues concerning adaptation responses to aerobic training. It is suggested that direct assessment of V02max and estimation of lactate threshold are currently the most suitable measures of aerobic power and adaptation responses to aerobic exercise. To better understand how aerobic fitness affects psychological variables, it is also necessary to consider genetic influences and level and mode of adaptation to aerobic training. It is suggested that there should be more focus on examining underlying mechanisms common to both aerobic fitness and the phenomenon of interest. This focus should integrate multiple adaptation patterns and physiological and psychological responses rather than measure solitary parameters.

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Stephen H. Boutcher and Michele Trenske

This study examined the effects of sensory deprivation and music on perceived exertion and affect. Volunteer women (N=24) performed three 18-min sessions on a cycle ergometer at light, moderate, and heavy workloads during which perceived exertion, affect, and heart rate were monitored. Each subject participated in a control, deprivation, and music condition. No significant differences where found in heart rate between conditions. In contrast, significantly lower perceived exertion existed during the music compared to the deprived condition at the low workload. Similarly, there was lower perceived exertion during the music compared to the control condition at the moderate workload. Also, significantly greater levels of affect were observed during the music compared to the deprived condition at the moderate and heavy workloads. It was concluded that the influence of music and deprivation on perceived exertion and affect was load dependent. These results are discussed with regard to informational processing models of sensory and psychological input.

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Stephen H. Boutcher and Nathaniel W. Zinsser

Cardiac, respiratory, and behavioral patterns of elite (n = 15) and beginning (n = 15) golfers were monitored before and during the performance of six 4-ft and six 12-ft putts. In contrast to elite golfers, beginning golfers failed to demonstrate consistent behavioral preputt routines (e.g., number of practice swings, glances at hole). Elite golfers, compared to beginning golfers, exhibited significantly better putting performance at the 12-ft distance. Both elite and beginning golfers showed significantly decelerated heart rate during the 4- and 12-ft putts. Within four cardiac cycles before striking the ball, the interbeat interval significantly lengthened, indicating a decrease in heart rate. For the 12-ft putt, however, elite golfers in comparison to beginners recorded significantly slower heart rates for the interbeat intervals immediately before, during, and after ball strike.

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Stephen H. Boutcher and Robert J. Rotella

A four-phase psychological skills educational program for closed-skill performance enhancement is outlined. The four phases of the program are sport analysis, individual assessment, conceptualization/motivation, and mental skill development. The sport analysis phase involves analyzing the unique characteristics and demands of a particular activity or sport. The individual assessment phase entails establishing an individual profile of the athlete’s strengths and weaknesses. The conceptual/motivational phase provides information on the athlete/athletic situation interaction, the kind of commitment needed to change inappropriate behaviors, and the importance of establishing an efficient goal-setting strategy. The final phase focuses on the development of general and specific mental skills. Sources and examples of data-gathering techniques, questionnaires, and mental skill enhancement strategies are described.

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Martin Tan, Rachel Chan Moy Fat, Yati N. Boutcher and Stephen H. Boutcher

High-intensity intermittent exercise (HIIE) such as the 30-s Wingate test attenuates postprandial triacylglycerol (TG), however, the ability of shorter versions of HIIE to reduce postprandial TG is undetermined. Thus, the effect of 8-s sprinting bouts of HIIE on blood TG levels of 12 females after consumption of a high-fat meal (HFM) was examined. Twelve young, sedentary women (BMI 25.1 ± 2.3 kg/m2; age 21.3 ± 2.1 years) completed a maximal oxygen uptake test and then on different days underwent either an exercise or a no-exercise postprandial TG condition. Both conditions involved consuming a HFM after a 12-hr fast. The HFM, in milkshake form provided 4170 kJ (993 Kcal) of energy and 98 g fat. Order was counter-balanced. In the exercise condition participants completed 20-min of HIIE cycling consisting of repeated bouts of 8 s sprint cycling (100–115 rpm) and 12 s of active rest (easy pedaling) 14 hr before consuming the HFM. Blood samples were collected hourly after the HFM for 4 hr. Total postprandial TG was 13% lower, p = .004, in the exercise (5.84 ± 1.08 mmol L−1 4 h−1) compared with the no-exercise condition (6.71 ± 1.63 mmol L−1 4 h−1). In conclusion, HIIE significantly attenuated postprandial TG in sedentary young women.

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Daniel M. Landers, Stephen H. Boutcher and Min Q. Wang

In the past 7 years JSP has evolved to become a respected sport psychology journal. The journal has been uncompromising in the strong research posture it has taken. It is currently the only journal entirely devoted to sport psychology that uses a single set of criteria for evaluating the scientific merit of submitted manuscripts. Over this time period the submitted manuscripts have shown an increase in the number of female principal authors as well as authors being affiliated with departments other than physical education. Survey studies were the most common submittals, but lately there has been a greater emphasis in field experimental studies. Some potential problem areas are noted in subject selection and choice of statistical tests. An examination of research areas revealed that in recent years "motivation" was the most frequently submitted topic. It appeared that other research areas varied in terms of their publishability. The common methodological problems associated with rejection of these types of manuscripts are discussed.

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Stephen H. Boutcher, Lori A. Fleischer-Curtian and Scott D. Gines

This study was designed to examine the audience-pleasing and self-constructional aspects of self-presentation on perceived exertion. Subjects performed two 18-min sessions on a cycle ergometer at light, moderate, and heavy workloads, during which perceived exertion and heart rate were collected. Each subject participated in a male and female experimenter condition. Males reported significantly lower perceived exertion in the female experimenter condition at the heavy load, compared to the same load in the male experimenter condition. There were no other significant differences for males or females at any of the workloads in either condition. Responses on the Self-Monitoring Inventory were used to assign subjects to either a high or low self-construction group. Results indicated that high self-constructors recorded significantly lower perceived exertion, compared to low self-constructors, at the low and moderate workloads.

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Stephen H. Boutcher, Barbara J. Meyer, Gemma A. Craig and Lee Astheimer

The relationship between aging, physical activity, and vagal influence on the heart was assessed by measuring resting heart period variability in postmenopausal women. Participants were 14 aerobically trained women (mean age 55 ± 1.0 years) and 20 untrained women (mean age 59 ± 1.1 years). Participants lay for 25 min while heart period variability was assessed during spontaneous and paced breathing (7.5 breaths · min-1). Heart period variability was assessed through time series analysis (HPVts) of the interbeat interval. Results indicated I that the trained women had significantly (p < .05) lower supine resting heart rate than the untrained group. HPVts at high frequencies during spontaneous and paced breathing was greater for trained compared to untrained participants. Similarly, HPVts at medium frequencies during spontaneous and paced breathing was greater for trained compared to untrained participants. Also, rate pressure product of the trained group was significantly lower than for the untrained. These results extend prior research by showing that aerobically trained postmenopausal women possessed significantly elevated resting vagal influence on the heart compared to their untrained counterparts.

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Stephen Boutcher, Robert J. Brustad, Thomas E. Deeter, David Dzewaltowski and Linda Petlichkoff

Edited by Charles J. Hardy

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Stephen Boutcher, Robert J. Brustad, Thomas E. Deeter, David Dzewaltowski, Robert Grove, Howard Hall and Linda Petlichkoff

Edited by Charles J. Hardy