Robert J. Brustad and Michelle Ritter-Taylor
Psychological processes in sport are inextricably linked to the social contexts within which they occur. However, research and practice in applied sport psychology have shown only marginal concern for the social dimensions of participation. As a consequence of stronger ties to clinical and counseling psychology than to social psychology, the prevailing model of intervention in applied sport psychology has been individually centered. Focus at the individual level has been further bolstered by cognitive emphases in modem psychology. The purpose of this paper is to highlight the need for a balanced consideration of social and personal influences. Four social psychological dimensions of interest will be explored, including athletic subculture membership; athletic identity concerns; social networks of influence; and leadership processes. The relevance of these forms of influence will be examined in relation to applied concerns in the areas of athlete academic performance, overtraining and burnout, and disordered eating patterns. At minimum, consultants need to address contextual and relational correlates of psychological and performance issues.
Frank L. Gardner and Zella E. Moore
Providing effective sport psychology services requires practitioners to conceptualize the unique issues and concerns of each individual athlete. However, collecting information on the athlete, understanding the athlete’s issues and needs, and determining how to best assist the athlete can be a complex process. Thus, this article outlines a case formulation approach to help the sport psychology consultant assess the athlete, organize and conceptualize assessment data, classify the athlete’s issues, and choose interventions that directly target those factors that are impeding the athlete’s progress in athletics or other life domains. Two case examples are provided to illustrate the case formulation process.
Robert J. Rotella and Mi Mi Murray
Homophobia has been an issue of concern in the world of sport for decades. It has had a negative impact on the world of athletes, coaches, and sport psychology consultants. Both heterosexuals and homosexuals are affected. Homophobia has kept some from striving for excellence while interfering with and hindering some who pursued success in sport. Specialists in sport psychology who claim to care about the development of human potential in sport must be concerned about the impact of homophobia. An honest look at attitudes, beliefs, and values is a necessary step forward if change is to occur. A move in the direction of healthy acceptance of differing sexual preferences is suggested, along with an effective philosophy for doing so. A wish list for the future is included.
James E. Loehr
This paper explores personal experiences in building a career in sport psychology and providing consulting services to professional tennis players. It describes the range of services provided, major client groups, and philosophy of service delivery. It reviews the overall training model used in service delivery as well as psychological assessment procedures used in consultation. It also describes how professional services were organized, type of services provided to specific client groups, and specific training components. Factors and issues influencing professional effectiveness and competence are explored. The importance of training and competence in all sport sciences are emphasized. The challenges and hardships encountered in building a successful career in this specialty are reviewed. The need for more effective and responsible applied technology and research is discussed.
Ted M. Butryn
Recently, there has been an increased effort to establish multicultural training programs for consultants working with diverse athlete populations. Although several authors have suggested that one aspect of such training is the examination of one’s biases related to race (Andersen, 1993; Martens, Mobley, & Zizzi, 2000), a systematic means of doing so has not yet been adequately discussed. In this article, I briefly discuss the field of whiteness studies, and the process of confronting what McIntosh (1988) has termed the “invisible knapsack of white privilege.” I then present the results of a life-history interview with a white male consultant, in which we discussed his changing sense of racial awareness and how he views his own white racial identity and the privileges associated with it. Finally, I discuss the results of a three-way discussion between myself, the consultant, and an African-American graduate student in sport psychology and present a preliminary account of white privileges specific to the applied field.
Artur Poczwardowski and Larry Lauer
Think tanks are small, cooperative learning groups that have the potential for unique learning outcomes. Addressing the “art” component of sport psychology service delivery via think tanks allows deep professional and personal exploration and meaningful exchange. In this article, we describe Dr. Ken Ravizza’s think tank organized in Redondo Beach, California, November 20-22, 2003. Ten established sport psychology professionals, 14 young professionals/graduate students, and 9 experienced coaches met to share important lessons from applying sport psychology in competitive settings. In this report written as “anecdotal reflection,” we provide an in-depth account of the process of the Redondo think tank to allow potential replications by those seeking ongoing professional growth and the advancement of applied sport psychology. Additionally, recommendations on how to rigorously study future think tanks are offered.
Judy L. Van Raalte and Mark B. Andersen
The authors focus on many of the complex issues that sport psychologists face when working with athletes through the process of leaving sport. They briefly review the literature on career termination to serve as a foundation for a discussion of the effects that an athlete’s career termination can have on teammates, family, and the self. The authors also explore the issue of bias and prejudice. People intimately involved in sport (sport psychologists included) often have a prejudice toward sport relative to other possible activities or goals. This bias might influence how sport psychologists listen to, interpret, and formulate athlete cases. Case examples are used to highlight the difficulties of identifying career-termination concerns and the professional and personal tensions that come with making sport career changes. With care, sport psychologists can manage career termination and related issues and effectively address the health and happiness of the athletes they serve.
Tammy Sheehy, Sam Zizzi, Kristen Dieffenbach and Lee-Ann Sharp
. Thelwell , C. Harwood , & I. Greenlees (Eds.), The psychology of sports coaching: Research and practice (pp. 114 – 126 ). Abingdon, UK : Routledge . Sharp , L.A. , & Hodge , K. ( 2013 ). Effective sport psychology consulting relationships: Two coach case studies . The Sport Psychologist
Mike Voight and John Callaghan
The purpose of this study is to provide information regarding the number of consulting positions offered by NCAA Division I universities. Questionnaires were administered to 115 NCAA Division I universities. An 84% return rate was achieved, totaling 96 universities. It was determined that 51 (53%) of the university athletic departments in the sample used some form of sport psychology consulting, whereas 45 (47%) departments reportedly did not use the services of a sport psychology consultant. Frequency reports of those questionnaires from universities who used sport psychology consulting services indicated 10 different sport psychology consultant positions; the most often used consultant positions consisted of the part-time consultants hired by individual sport programs (n = 19, 37%), followed by part-time consultants hired by the athletic departments (n = 10, 20%), then full-time consultants hired by the athletic departments (n = 7, 14%). Also reported are the reasons some athletic departments did not use the services of a sport psychology consultant.