I present my personal experience as a sport psychologist on the sports medicine staff at the 1994 United States Olympic Festival. In addition to documenting my activities in preparation for the Festival and my work during the games, I raise issues concerning psychological service delivery at large, multisport events and the personal impact of such service on the sport psychologist. I also consider implications of my work at the festival for the development of the profession of sport psychology.
Shane M. Murphy and Alfred P. Ferrante
A description is given of the sport psychology services provided to the U.S. Team at the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, South Korea. The service delivery model is described and several examples illustrate the nature of the consultations provided to coaches and athletes. Some 72 formal consultations were held with 40 individuals and teams, and an analysis is given of the types of services requested and the clients who were served.
Shane M. Murphy
The U.S. Olympic Committee’s Sports Medicine Council decided in 1987, for the first time, to assign a sport psychologist to the medical team of the 1987 U.S. Olympic Festival. This article describes the outcome of providing sport psychology services at the Festival. A brief history is given of the relationship between sport psychology and the U.S. Olympic movement, and the current status of sport psychologists within the Olympic movement is described. An analysis is provided of the types of services requested at the Festival, the referral sources, the major sports served, and several illustrative case examples describing athletes. Two models influenced the delivery of sport psychology services at the Olympic Festival, the medical model and the consultation model, and the advantages and disadvantages of each are discussed. Based upon the Olympic Festival experience, a consultation model may be appropriate for sport psychologists working in such a setting. The paper concludes with some suggestions regarding the training of students in the theory of effective consultation, drawing upon the knowledge base of industrial-organizational and medical psychology.
Craig Wrisberg, Jenny Lind Withycombe, Duncan Simpson, Lauren A. Loberg and Ann Reed
In the current study National Collegiate Athletic Association D-I athletic directors (n = 198) and presidents (n = 58) were asked to rate their perceptions of the benefits of various sport psychology services and their support of possible roles for a sport psychology consultant (SPC). Participants gave higher ratings for (a) services that were performance-related (e.g., dealing with pressure) than for those that were life-related (e.g., preventing burnout) and (b) a role for a SPC that involved the provision of services but not a full-time staff position or interactions with athletes at practices and competitions. Results indicated that while administrators acknowledge the potential benefits of sport psychology services, some remain reticent to employ them on a full-time basis. Future research is recommended with administrators that have employed SPCs full-time to determine their perceptions of the impact of sport psychology services on their student-athletes.
Jodi Yambor and Deidre Connelly
This article discusses issues related to the delivery of personal and performance enhancement consulting services to male student-athletes by female sport psychology consultants. A holistic, developmental, educational philosophy is described as a basis for providing services. Ethics, delivery, and consultant effectiveness are discussed relative to the male client/female consultant situation. A number of prevalent attitudes and stereotypes that may present obstacles to the successful delivery of services are discussed, along with the authors’ experiences and suggested tactics to minimize or confront and cope with these potential barriers.
Amanda Martindale and Dave Collins
This paper establishes current theoretical understanding on the development of professional judgment and decision-making (PJDM) expertise within applied sport psychology (ASP). Traditional and naturalistic paradigms of decision making are contrasted and the resulting blending of systematic analysis and intuition most appropriate for applied practice is explained through the concept of skilled intuition (Kahneman & Klein, 2009). Conditions for the development of skilled intuition are considered alongside recognition of the fragility of human judgment and the subtleties of the ASP environment. Key messages from cognitive psychology literature on the development of PJDM expertise are offered and recommendations made to facilitate the acquisition of decision-making expertise in ASP.
Jon C. Hellstedt
This paper describes a sport psychology program conducted at a ski academy for a group of 43 competitive skiers in grades 8-12. The program’s effectiveness is discussed using evaluations from participants and coaches. The positive results of the evaluations and a drop in scores on the Sport Competition Anxiety Test indicates the various components of the program were helpful in developing skills in sport and in the athletes’ lives in general. Implications for future programs of this type are discussed, as is the role of the sport psychologist in this type of setting.
Diane M. Culver, Wade Gilbert and Andrew Sparkes
A follow-up of the 1990s review of qualitative research articles published in three North American sport psychology journals (Culver, Gilbert, & Trudel, 2003) was conducted for the years 2000–2009. Of the 1,324 articles published, 631 were data-based and 183 of these used qualitative data collection techniques; an increase from 17.3% for the 1990s to 29.0% for this last decade. Of these, 31.1% employed mixed methods compared with 38.1% in the 1990s. Interviews were used in 143 of the 183 qualitative studies and reliability test reporting increased from 45.2% to 82.2%. Authors using exclusively quotations to present their results doubled from 17.9% to 39.9%. Only 13.7% of the authors took an epistemological stance, while 26.2% stated their methodological approach. We conclude that positivist/postpositivist approaches appear to maintain a predominant position in sport psychology research. Awareness of the importance of being clear about epistemology and methodology should be a goal for all researchers.
Philippa McGregor and Stacy Winter
The purpose of this paper is to share and reflect on personal experiences of providing sport psychology support to an international lacrosse squad during their World Cup participation. Based on the needs analysis assessments from observation reports and informal communications, key areas of support included: (1) creating structure and routine, (2) facilitating team reflections, (3) goal setting, (4) game preparation, and (5) providing off-field support. Working with this team exposed the dynamic nature of sport psychology consultancy, and the unpredictability of what is required from a team in a high-performance setting. Individual consultancy through informal communications with players signaled the importance of supporting the person beyond their role as an athlete. Team-level support via group workshop sessions was predominantly performance-related, and required the adoption of solution-focused approaches given the time pressure on strategies to be effective. The support facilitated team organization and preparation, which enabled players to be both mentally and physically ready for each game. Establishing stable routines, game plans, and clear goals, and having adequate reflection and feedback time were reported by the players as important facets of their World Cup experience and success.
Diane L. Gill
clear focus on sport psychology emerged in the 1920s with the research and applied work of Coleman Griffith ( 1925 , 1930 ) in the United States, Peter Roudik in Russia, R.W. Schulte in Germany, and a few others around the world. Sport psychology was not an organized field then, and Griffith’s early