This study was designed to (a) determine whether three frequently used mental skills training programs enhance dart throwing performance beyond that obtained by physical practice and a no-practice control, (b) compare the relative effectiveness of the three methods of mental training programs, and (c) determine if these programs differentially affect subjects who were initially of high or low skill. The subjects (N=75) were college-age men and women who were matched between conditions on ability level. In addition to the three MT groups, there was one physical practice (PP) and one control group (C). The three methods of MT included Bennett and Pravitz’ (1982, 1987), Gauron’s (1984), and Unestahl’s (1983b) packaged programs. Significant group differences were found in posttest dart throwing performance; in particular, subjects receiving the Bennett and Pravitz and Unestahl MT differed from the control group. It was concluded that Bennett and Pravitz and Unestahl packaged programs were effective since they significantly differed from the control and equaled the performance of the PP group, despite receiving substantially less physical practice.
William F. Straub
Many problems are associated with the measurement of athletes in contemporary sport psychology. There is, for example, a dearth of valid and reliable tests to assess the many and diverse behaviors of players. The purpose of this investigation was to attempt to validate Zuckerman's sensation seeking scale (SSS V) using high- and low-risk sport participants. The SSS (Form V) was administered to male hang gliders (n = 33), automobile racers (n = 22), and intercollegiate bowlers (n = 25). It was hypothesized that the high-risk athletes (hang gliders and auto racers) would score significantly higher (.05 level) than the low-risk sport participants (bowlers) in total sensation seeking score and on the four subscales of Zuckerman's test. Stepwise multiple discriminant function analyses found that except for thrill and adventure seeking and disinhibition subscales, the above hypotheses were tenable. Thus, it was concluded that support exists for Zuckerman's SSS (Form V) as a measure of sensation seeking among male athletes.
William F. Straub and Donna A. Hinman
The primary purpose of this study was to identify 10 leading sport psychologists in North America for the 1980s as perceived by a sample of professional sport psychologists. In alphabetical order, the 10 who were selected by their peers included Daniel Gould, Daniel Landers, Rainer Martens, Robert Nideffer, Bruce Ogilvie, Terry Orlick, Tara Scanlan, Robert Singer, Ronald Smith, and Robert Weinberg. The second purpose of the study was to profile these individuals and gain their perspectives on various issues facing the field of sport psychology in the 1990s. Issues regarding research focus, professional organizations, graduate training, and future directions for the field are discussed.