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David Collins, Bruce Hale and Joe Loomis

Studies of sport participation that include emotional responses, particularly anger, are frequently flawed because measures consist of associative paper–pencil inventories and archival data. In the present study, startle response (an aversive reflex) was enhanced during an unpleasant emotional state and diminished in a pleasant emotional context. Nonsignificant differences on this dispositional measure between 36 athletes and nonathletes did not replicate findings differing normals and psychopaths (Patrick, Bradley, & Lang, 1993) on emotional responsivity. Similarity was also apparent in experiential aspects of anger responsivity as revealed by the check for differences in attributional style. No significant intergroup differences were found in participants’ responses to realistic situations (termed vignettes), in evaluation of the anger/provocation inherent in the situation, in the reasons attributed to the “frustrater,” or in self-reported intended response. Implications for future sport research on emotional responsivity, anger and aggressive behavior are discussed.

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Amanda Visek and Jack Watson

The purpose of this investigation was to examine male ice hockey players’ (N = 85) perceived legitimacy of aggression and professionalization of attitudes across developmental age and competitive level. Findings were analyzed within the complementary conceptual frameworks of social learning theory, professionalization of attitudes, and moral reasoning. Ice hockey players completed a modified, sport-specific version of the Sport Behavior Inventory and a modified version of the Context Modified Webb scale. Results of the investigation revealed that as players increased in age and competitive level, perceived legitimacy of aggressive behavior increased, and their attitudes about sport became increasingly professionalized. Based on the conceptual framework in which the results are interpreted, intervention services by sport psychology practitioners are explored that are aimed at the athlete, the organization, and influential others.

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Nicholas Stanger, Maria Kavussanu and Christopher Ring

Aggression has been linked to empathy and emotions (e.g., guilt) in cross-sectional studies. The purpose of this experiment was to examine the effects of empathy on emotional reactions to aggression and the role of guilt in the empathy–aggression relationship. Seventy-one undergraduate sport and exercise science students with a mean age of 19.56 (SD = 1.94) years were randomly assigned to either a high- or a low-empathy group. We experimentally manipulated empathy using perspective taking instructions and examined the following: (a) participants’ emotional reactions to images of aggressive acts; (b) their reported likelihood to aggress in a hypothetical sport situation; and (c) the extent to which they anticipated feeling guilt if they were to engage in an aggressive act. Participants in the high-empathy group experienced stronger negative emotional reactions to images of aggressive acts and reported lower likelihood to aggress than did those in the low-empathy group. Anticipated guilt partially mediated the effects of empathy on reported likelihood to aggress. Our findings suggest that empathy may help reduce aggressive behavior and highlight the potential mediating role of guilt.

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John Kerr

aggressive behavior and is of only limited relevance to the study of aggression in sport ( Kerr, 2005 ). The traditional view does not take into account sports in which physical aggression plays an integral part. Certain sport activities provide a unique environment in which a special set of conditions

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Ian David Boardley, Doris Matosic and Mark William Bruner

), whereas the other comprises acts toward teammates (e.g., verbally abusing a teammate). While the former type comprises both physical and verbal behaviors, the latter only consists of verbal acts. Of importance though is that both forms of AB include aggressive behaviors, defined in sport as overt verbal

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Paul A. Davis, Louise Davis, Samuel Wills, Ralph Appleby and Arne Nieuwenhuys

of categories from each of the interview transcripts ( Hsieh & Shannon, 2005 ). This method was deemed appropriate as it allowed specific contextual experiences to be identified (e.g., response strategies used by batsmen after aggressive behavior from the bowler). The first stage of the coding

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Elizabeth A. Taylor, Allison B. Smith, Cheryl R. Rode and Robin Hardin

Faculty Reports of Frequency and Distress of Student Incivility/Bullying and Aggression This inventory consists of 31 uncivil, bullying, or aggressive behaviors and how distressed the behaviors make the respondent feel. These behaviors were included in the inventory after careful comparison with previous

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Mitch Abrams and Michelle L. Bartlett

supported bystander-based approaches, as well ( NCAA, n.d. ). However, when examined more closely, it has been recognized that actively intervening in a peer or stranger’s aggressive behavior is a challenging task even for well-trained adults ( Casey & Ohler, 2012 ) and, further, youth identified more

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Ben Larkin and Janet S. Fink

negatively on the individual. We turn our attention to this idea in the following section. Team Identification and Aggression Team identification has long been associated with aggressive behavior as a coping strategy leveraged by sport fans. Wann and Branscombe ( 1990 ) noted that when highly identified fans

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Maria Grazia Monaci and Francesca Veronesi

in turn may trigger aggressive behaviors linked to feelings of anger more frequently than in other disciplines. With these premises, the aim of the present study was to investigate gender differences in anger experience, expression and control and the anger-performance relationship in tennis players