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Maureen R. Weiss and Becky L. Sisley

The present study examined the problem of coaching attrition in youth sports by asking former coaches why they quit. Also, dropout and current coaches were compared on demographic characteristics, coaching orientations, self-ratings of coaching abilities, and attitudes toward program policies. Current (n = 159) and dropout (n = 97) coaches associated with a youth sports agency responded to a background questionnaire and a coaching orientations and preferred outcomes questionnaire. Dropout coaches also completed a questionnaire to assess the reasons why they quite coaching. Multiple reasons were cited: time involvement, conflicts with job, child no longer participating, loss of motivation, problems with unqualified officiating, and dissatisfaction with program philosophy. Current and dropout coaches were similar on demographic characteristics and coaching orientations but differed on preferred coaching outcomes. Recommendations for retaining youth coaches, and thus coaching continuity for the kids, included enhancing the quality of officiating, providing coaching clinics, and soliciting input from coaches and parents regarding program philosophy and policies.

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Arnold LeUnes and Sue Ann Hayward

Departmental chairpersons of American Psychological Association-approved clinical psychology programs responded to a questionnaire concerned with selected aspects of sport psychology. Of 147 chairs, 102 (69.4%) returned the instrument. The nine questions comprising the instrument were aimed at assessing the current perception of and future predictions for sport psychology. Data analysis is supportive of the viability of sport psychology but also indicates that it is not a major curricular component in selected psychology departments at the present time. Sport psychology appears to be positively perceived by the current respondents, and there is little evidence of an impending turf war between psychology and physical education over who will control the field. However, the use of the term sport psychologist is seen as contentious in view of state/provincial licensing laws, but no clear-cut answer to credentialing is foreseen.

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Margaret M. Coleman and Murray Mitchell

The purpose of this study was to develop a strategy to assess two facets of the supervisory responsibilities of Cooperating Teachers (CTs): (a) what CTs choose to observe during a lesson when preparing to offer comments to a student teacher and (b) what CTs choose to bring to the attention of student teachers after observing a lesson. The purpose also was to determine the usefulness of the strategy in discriminating among CTs that may have different preparation backgrounds for supervisory duties. Eighteen elementary level CTs participated by individually watching a videotaped lesson, preparing a written critique, and responding to interviews regarding the supervision of a student teacher. Results support the strategy used as a viable means for identifying selected supervisory abilities of CTs, facilitating the identification of discernible similarities and differences among CTs, and discriminating between two groups of CTs with different backgrounds.

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Kathy J. Spangler and Linda L. Caldwell

A collaborative framework that influences the promotion of policy related to physical activity should include parks and recreation as well as public health practitioners and researchers. As governments at all levels become increasingly focused on the impact of public resources, park and recreation agencies are challenged to document and demonstrate the impact of leisure services. Public policy associated with parks and recreation is driven by public interest and is often debated in the absence of relevant research to demonstrate the determinants and correlates of parks and recreation to address prevailing social conditions. This paper describes current policy and funding issues faced by public parks and recreation professionals responding to increasing physically active leisure across the lifespan of Americans. We also discuss how a collaborative framework approach can be used to inform public policy designed to increase the physical activity of the American public.

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Deborah Rohm Young, Abby C. King and Roberta K. Oka

This investigation identified demographic and health-related characteristics of 1,877 sedentary, underactive, and regularly active individuals aged 50 to 65 randomly sampled from a northern California city. Physiological and psychosocial information was available in greater detail for a subsample (n = 327) of sedentary and underactive persons who were subsequently enrolled in a randomized, controlled, clinical trial (SSHIP). Results suggested that unmarried men, women reporting poor health, and smokers were most likely to be completely sedentary. Sedentary and underactive individuals responded differently to two recruitment strategies designed to attract participants into SSHIP. In addition, the initially sedentary participants had significantly lower adherence rates across the 1-year exercise trial compared to the initially underactive regardless of either the format or intensity of the program. These data underscore the utility of differentiating between levels of less-than-optimal physical activity in formulating campaigns promoting physical activity as well as designing exercise interventions.

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Nicola J. Hodges

When we watch other people perform actions, this involves many interacting processes comprising cognitive, motor, and visual system interactions. These processes change based on the context of our observations, particularly if the actions are novel and our intention is to learn those actions so we can later reproduce them, or respond to them in an effective way. Over the past 20 years or so I have been involved in research directed at understanding how we learn from watching others, what information guides this learning, and how our learning experiences, whether observational or physical, impact our subsequent observations of others, particularly when we are engaged in action prediction. In this review I take a historical look at action observation research, particularly in reference to motor skill learning, and situate my research, and those of collaborators and students, among the common theoretical and methodological frameworks of the time.

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Stephen K. Ford and Jeffery J. Summers

The factorial validity of the attentional-style subscales of the Test of Attentional and Interpersonal Style (TAIS) have recently been questioned, although the evidence is only indirect. This study aimed to examine, directly, the factorial validity of these scales and to cross-validate the results. Two samples of 210 first-year psychology students responded to the 52 items comprising the attention-related subscales of the TAIS. A multidimensional confirmatory factor analysis (MCFA) was conducted on the interitem covariance matrix to test the measurement model underlying the six subscales. The MCFA results failed to support the model. Furthermore, internal consistency coefficients and item-total coefficients also supported the view that many of the subscales have insufficient factorial validity. Of the 52 items, 44% correlated better with at least one subscale other than their own, which indicates poor discriminant validity. Analysis of item content reveals some explanation for the poor discriminant validity. All results were cross-validated with the second sample.

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Murray F. Mitchell

The purpose of this study was to determine why and how a sample of physical education teacher education (PETE) scholars manage to be productive publishers. Authors or coauthors of four or more articles in the Journal of Teaching in Physical Education (JTPE) through the 1980s (N = 24) responded to a mail questionnaire on why they write, why they choose to write for JTPE, what they believe to be true about themselves or their approach to writing, and any situational factors that have led to their publication success. Authors described personal motives such as publishing to meet a curiosity drive, for the enjoyment of the process, to facilitate learning, and to lead toward promotion and raises. Facilitators of the process included having access to colleagues and mentors and having a personal commitment to pursue publication. These findings are discussed with regard to insights available for administrators and novice faculty members.

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Sima Mistry and Jose L. Contreras-Vidal

Recent motor control theories suggest that the brain uses internal models to plan and control accurate movements. An internal model is thought to represent how the biomechanics of the arm interacting with the outside world would respond to a motor command; therefore it can be seen as a predictive model of the reafference that helps the system plan ahead. Moreover, adaptation studies show that humans can learn multiple internal models. It is not clear, however, whether and how contextual cues are used to switch among competing internal models, which are required to compensate for altered environments. To investigate this question, we asked healthy participants to perform center-out pointing movements under normal and distorted visual feedback (0°, 30° counterclockwise, and 60° clockwise rotation of hand-screen cursor relationships) conditions. The results suggest that humans can learn multiple environments simultaneously and can use contextual cues to facilitate adaptation and to recall the appropriate internal model of the visuomotor transformation.

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Kerrie J. Kauer and Vikki Krane

Edited by Lavon Williams

This investigation, framed in feminist and social identity perspectives, examined female athletes’ interpretations and reactions to the stereotypes ascribed to women in sport. Interviews with 15 female collegiate athletes revealed that the primary stereotypes directed at them were that they were lesbian and masculine. These stereotypes seemed to emanate from the athletes’ lack of conformity to hegemonic femininity (Choi, 1998; Krane, 2001a). Initially, the athletes responded to being typecast with anger and they used social mobility strategies (e.g., distancing from an athletic identity, performing femininity) to avoid negative perceptions. Both heterosexual and lesbian/bisexual athletes coped with being stereotyped and grew more comfortable with their own sexual identities and those of their teammates. This led to the development of inclusive team environments, collective esteem, and empowerment, with athletes speaking out against homonegative comments in other settings.