Individual differences in cognitive preferences were examined in analyzing the effects of imagery and self-talk training on the psychological skills and performance levels of amateur golfers. Thirty-two men and women participated in a series of four counterbalanced training workshops and activities conducted over 2 months at two golf clubs. A repeated measures MANOVA revealed significant improvement on five psychological and psychomotor skills measured by the Golf Performance Survey: negative emotions and cognitions, mental preparation, automaticity, putting skill, and seeking improvement. Participants’ responses to the Sport Imagery Questionnaire and ratings of their imagery and self-talk techniques increased significantly after training. Players also lowered their handicaps and performed significantly better on a Golf Skills Test after training. Imagery and self-talk training benefits were not linked to participants’ cognitive preferences. The cognitive flexibility displayed by these golfers signals the need for more research on processing preferences and has implications for practitioners working with athletes.
Patrick R. Thomas and Gerard J. Fogarty
Lew Hardy and Gaynor Parfitt
The aim of this paper is to describe and appraise two different models used for providing sport psychology support services to the British Amateur Gymnastics Association over the last 6 years. In the first phase, the sport psychologists assumed the traditional role of experts who evaluated performers’ needs and then prescribed educational psychological skills training programs according to the sport psychologists’ perceptions of individual needs. This approach contained both educational and monitoring elements. The second phase adopted a consultancy approach in which the coach, performer, and sport psychologist were all assumed to bring expert knowledge to bear on any problem. In this approach, the sport psychologists responded to the expressed needs of performers and coaches, assuming diverse roles. According to the sport psychologists, this second model was more difficult to operate than the first model. However, consultant evaluation data and consultant opinion suggested the second model operated more successfully than the first.
Alison J. Doherty and Albert V. Carron
Understanding the experiences of volunteers in amateur sport organizations is critical to their effective management of these nonprofit organizations. The purpose of this study was to explore cohesion in volunteer sport executive committees. Members (n = 117) of sport executive committees or boards completed a questionnaire that assessed perceptions of cohesion, individual satisfaction, effort, intent to quit, committee effectiveness, and a variety of individual (gender, committee, role, tenure) and organizational (committee, size, gender composition, frequency and length of meetings) variables. Task cohesion was found to be stronger than social cohesion. Only committee size was found to be associated with perceptions of cohesiveness; members of smaller committees perceived less social cohesion than members of medium and larger committees. Task and social cohesion predicted volunteer satisfaction and perceived committee effectiveness, while volunteer effort and intent to remain with the committee were predicted by task cohesion. The results are discussed in terms of their implication for theory and practice.
Lisa M. Kikulis, Trevor Slack and Bob Hinings
The theoretical rationale underpinning this study was that decision making structures are tightly coupled to the core values of organizations and thus have a high impact on organizational design change. Taking a fine-grained approach to the analysis of decision making, the purpose of this study was to determine whether amateur sport organizations have shifted away from the dominant paradigm of volunteer-led decision making in favor of professional staff authority and autonomy over strategic decisions. Data from a population of 36 Canadian national sport organizations were used to show that changes in decision making have occurred. However, the shift in control from volunteers to professionals has not been established. In addition, change in decision making varied according to the direction of change, the decision making dimension, and the decision topic.
Judy Liao and Pirkko Markula
In November 2010, the US media reported that basketball player Diana Taurasi tested positive for a banned substance while playing in Turkey. In this study, we explore the media coverage of Taurasi’s positive drug test from a Deleuzian perspective. We consider the media coverage as an assemblage (Deleuze & Guattari, 1987; Malins, 2004) to analyze how Taurasi’s drug using body is articulated with the elite female sporting body in the coverage of her doping incident (Markula, 2004; Wise, 2011). Our analysis demonstrates that Taurasi’s position as a professional basketball player in the US dominated the discussion to legitimize her exoneration of banned substance use. In addition, Turkey, its “amateur” sport and poor drug control procedure, was located to the periphery to normalize a certain type of professionalism, doping control, and body as the desirable elements of sporting practice.
Oleg Kazennikov and Mario Wiesendanger
Music performance is based on demanding motor control with much practice from young age onward. We have chosen to investigate basic bimanual movements played by violin amateurs and professionals. We posed the question whether position and string changes, two frequent mechanisms, may influence the time interval bowing (right)-fingering (left) coordination. The objective was to measure bimanual coordination, i.e., with or without position changes and string changes. The tendency was that the bimanual coordination was statistically only slightly increased or even unchanged but not perceptible. We conclude that the coordination index is limited up to 100 ms intervals, without any erroneous perception. Although the mentioned position changes and string changes are movements with their timing, they are executed in parallel rather than in series with the bow-fingering coordination.
Over the past two decades, policy analysis has developed as a collection of formal methods to enhance policy design and implementation. Interpretive and critical methods for policy analysis have recently been advocated as a way to clarify the parameters of policy problems and thereby improve policy formulation and implementation. The heuristic basis for interpretive and critical policy analysis is consistent with contemporary findings in the psychology of decision making. Formal methods for interpretive and critical policy analysis are elaborated and illustrated via application to the drafting of the U.S. Amateur Sports Act (PL 95-606). It is shown that the methods illumine decision processes that have caused sport development to become subordinate to the administrative rationalization of American Olympic sport governance.
Richard J. Buning and Heather Gibson
Using the event-travel-career concept, this study examined the trajectory of active-sport-event travel careers through stages of development and the corresponding factors and dimensions perceived to influence career progression in the sport of cycling. In-depth semistructured interviews were conducted with 12 amateur cyclists engaged in lifestyles geared toward active event travel. A grounded theory approach revealed that active event travel careers evolve through a complex progression of 9 core themes and related subthemes. The core themes included the first event, starting out, motivation, temporal, travel style, destination criteria, event types, spatial, and later in life. On the basis of these findings, a 6-stage active-sport-event travel career model is proposed consisting of initiation, introduction, expansion, peak threshold, maintenance, and maturity. From this model, theoretical contributions, suggestions for future research, and practical implications for sport tourism and event management are discussed.
Mary D. Walling, Joan L. Duda and Likang Chi
The purpose of this study was to further examine the construct and predictive validity of the Perceived Motivational Climate in Sport Questionnaire or PMCSQ. Young athletes (N = 169, M age = 14.2 ± 1.94 years) on teams competing in an amateur international competition completed questionnaires measuring perceived motivational climate, the degree of worry experienced while participating, and team satisfaction. Results of a confirmatory factor analysis indicated an acceptable fit of the data with the hypothetical measurement model. In terms of the predictive utility of the PMCSQ, perceptions of a mastery climate were positively related to satisfaction with being a member on the team and negatively associated with performance worry. In contrast, perceptions of a performance climate were positively associated with concerns about failing and the adequacy of one's performance and negatively correlated with team satisfaction. Future directions in terms of instrument development and research on motivational climate in the sport setting are presented.
Marcin Baranowski, Jan Górski, Barbara Klapcinska, Zbigniew Waskiewicz and Ewa Sadowska-Krepa
We have previously shown that acute exercise increases the level of sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) in plasma and ceramide in erythrocytes of untrained subjects. The aim of the current study was to examine the effect of ultramarathon run on the plasma and erythrocyte levels of the following bioactive sphingolipids: S1P, sphinganine-1-phosphate (SA1P), sphingosine, sphinganine, and ceramide. Blood samples were collected from seven male amateur runners participating in a 48-hr ultramarathon race before the run, after 24 and 48 hr of running, and following 24 and 48 hr of recovery. The sphingolipids were quantified by means of HPLC. Sustained running for 48 hr resulted in a progressive decline in plasma S1P to a level significantly lower than at prerace, and then remained stable over the next 48 hr of recovery. In erythrocytes, S1P content was stable until 24 hr of recovery, then rose abruptly to reach peak values after 48 hr of recovery. The plasma level of SA1P decreased progressively during the competition and remained unchanged over the recovery. In erythrocytes, the level of SA1P increased after 24 hr running and normalized thereafter. The level of ceramide, both in plasma and erythrocytes, was not significantly affected by the ultraendurance run. We speculate that reduction in plasma level of S1P during and after the run reduces its biological actions and might be responsible for some negative side-effects of the ultraendurance effort.