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Jo Williams and Susan J. Chinn

Sport industry marketers have long understood the importance of nurturing customer relationships. The new challenge is how best to face the shifts in customer relationship marketing posed by sports organizations and proactive consumers, or “prosumers.” In this article, the elements of the relationship-building process are presented with a focus on communication, interaction, and value, concepts identified in Gronroos’s (2004) relationship-marketing process model. An expanded version of Gronroos’s model is developed to include prosumers and to describe the interactions that occur through social-media exchanges. The value of specific social-media tools and Web 2.0 technologies in helping sport marketers meet their relationship-marketing goals is also discussed. Finally, directions for future research employing the expanded model are suggested.

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Marc-André K. Lafrenière, Sophia Jowett, Robert J. Vallerand, Eric G. Donahue and Ross Lorimer

Vallerand et al. (2003) developed a dualistic model of passion, wherein two types of passion are proposed: harmonious (HP) and obsessive (OP) passion that predict adaptive and less adaptive interpersonal outcomes, respectively. In the present research, we were interested in understanding the role of passion in the quality of coach–athlete relationships. Results of Study 1, conducted with athletes (N = 157), revealed that HP positively predicts a high-quality coach–athlete relationship, whereas OP was largely unrelated to such relationships. Study 2 was conducted with coaches (N = 106) and showed that only HP positively predicted the quality of the coach–athlete relationship. Furthermore, these effects were fully mediated by positive emotions. Finally, the quality of the coach–athlete relationship positively predicted coaches’ subjective well-being. Future research directions are discussed in light of the dualistic model of passion.

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Mark S. Tremblay, J. Wyatt Inman and J. Douglas Willms

This study examined the relationships between children’s reported levels of physical activity, body-mass index, self-esteem, and reading and mathematics scores, while controlling for sex, family structure, and socioeconomic status. The data were collected from the full population of Grade 6 students (N = 6,923) in New Brunswick (NB), Canada in 1996, as part of the Elementary School Climate Study, and the NB Department of Education’s Grade 6 Assessment. Physical activity had a negative relationship with body-mass index. Physical activity had a positive relationship with self-esteem, and a trivial negative relationship with academic achievement. The analysis revealed that both females and males who were more physically active had considerably higher levels of self-esteem. The study suggests that the relationship between physical activity and academic achievement is weak. For some children, physical activity may be indirectly related to enhanced academic performance by improving physical health and self-esteem.

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Gashaw Abeza, Norm O’Reilly, Benoit Seguin and Ornella Nzindukiyimana

This study, guided by the relationship marketing theoretical framework, adopted an observational netnography method to investigate professional sport teams’ use of Twitter as a relationship marketing tool. Specifically, the study focused on the three core components of the theoretical framework of relationship marketing: communication, interaction, and value. The observational netnography is based on data gathered from the official Twitter account of 20 professional sport teams in the four major North American leagues over a seven-month period. Results outline seven emergent communication types, six interaction practices, and ten values (co)created by the teams or/and fans. Theoretical and practical implications, as well as impetus for future research, are identified.

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Mandy Frake

This study examines the significance of the development of relationships in team sports as a factor contributing to female sustained participation in sport. Ten open-ended interviews were conducted with female varsity athletes. The results demonstrate that for women to sustain participation in sports, an environment in which relationships may be developed must be provided. Using Thayer-Bacon’s (2000) ‘relational epistemology’ I unpack this research and the significance of relationships in sport as being critical to sustaining participation. Relationships may be understood in various categories; supporting, motivating, and bonding. There are a number of questions presented that may lead to further research, specifically in regard to what physical educators and coaches may implement in an educational, athletic, or practice setting to enhance females’ positive experiences in a group setting.

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Jorge Mota, José Carlos Ribeiro, Henrique Barros, Jos W.R. Twisk, José Oliveira and José A. Duarte

Background:

The purpose of the study was to investigate the longitudinal relationship between physical activity and clustering of some cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors after 1-y follow-up.

Methods:

The sample comprised 704 males and 770 females between the ages of 8 to 15 y. Clustering was defined as belonging to one or more sex and age-specific “high-risk” quartiles for biological risk factors. The longitudinal relationships were analyzed with multilevel analysis.

Results:

There was no longitudinal significant relationship between physical activity and individual biological risk factors. When biological risk factor clustering was considered, however, there was a significant longitudinal relationship with physical activity.

Conclusion:

It can be concluded that even at a young age, physical activity can play an important role in developing a healthy lifestyle profile.

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Vassil Girginov, Marijke Taks, Bob Boucher, Scott Martyn, Marge Holman and Jess Dixon

Sport-participation development requires a systematic process involving knowledge creation and dissemination and interactions between national sport organizations (NSOs), participants, clubs, and associations, as well as other agencies. Using a relationship-marketing approach (Grönroos, 1997, Gummesson, 2002, Olkkonen, 1999), this article addresses the question, How do Canadian NSOs use the Web, in terms of functionality and services offered, to create and maintain relationships with sport participants and their sport-delivery partners? Ten Canadian NSOs’ Web sites were examined. Functionality was analyzed using Burgess and Cooper’s (2000) eMICA model, and NSOs’ use of the Internet to establish and maintain relationships with sport participants was analyzed using Wang, Head, and Archer’s (2000) relationshipbuilding process model for the Web. It was found that Canadian NSOs were receptive to the use of the Web, but their information-gathering and -dissemination activities, which make up the relationship-building process, appear sparse and in some cases are lagging behind the voluntary sector in the country.

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Tracie J. Rogers and Daniel M. Landers

The mediating effect of peripheral narrowing in the negative life event stress (N-LES)/athletic injury relationship was investigated. LES and other psychosocial variables were measured, and peripheral vision was assessed in nonstressful (practice day) and stressful (game day) sport situations. Results showed that total LES, N-LES, and psychological coping skills significantly contributed to the prediction of the occurrence of athletic injury. Additionally, psychological coping skills buffered the N-LES/athletic injury relationship. Peripheral narrowing during stress significantly mediated 8.1% of the N-LES/athletic injury relationship. The findings support the predictions of the model of stress and injury, provide evidence for peripheral narrowing as a mechanism in the LES/athletic injury relationship, and suggest directions for future research examining mediating effects in the model of stress and injury.

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Kathy Babiak

Interorganizational relationships have become increasingly important for sport organizations. The purpose of this study was to explore the determinants and conditions of partnership formation in a group of collaborating nonprofit, public, and private organizations. A conceptual framework that includes the determinants of legitimacy, stability, necessity, asymmetry, reciprocity, and efficiency were used. Conditions including interdependence and presence of an interpersonal network were also explored. This research employed qualitative methods to examine partners’ reasons for developing interorganizational relationships in a sport context. For the collaborating organizations, the determinants of legitimacy, stability, reciprocity, and efficiency prevailed as important motives for relationship formation. These findings help to refine and apply contemporary theory to sport management and can be used to help manage interorganizational relationships.

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Kevin G. Laudner, Justin M. Stanek and Keith Meister

Context:

Deficiencies in scapular upward rotation and periscapular strength have been associated with various shoulder pathologies and decreased athletic performance. Therefore, proper periscapular strength and concomitant scapular upward rotation are important factors among overhead athletes, such as baseball players.

Objective:

To assess the relationships between lower trapezius and serratus anterior strength and the quantity of scapular upward rotation.

Design:

Descriptive study.

Setting:

Laboratory.

Participants:

24 professional baseball pitchers.

Measures:

Scapular upward rotation was measured at 0°, 60°, 90°, and 120° of humeral elevation. The maximum isometric strength of the lower trapezius and serratus anterior were measured.

Results:

There was a moderate-good positive relationship between lower trapezius strength and scapular upward rotation at 90° (r 2 = .56, P = .001) and 120° (r 2 = .53, P = .001). The relationships between scapular upward rotation and serratus anterior strength were all poor.

Conclusion:

A moderate-good relationship existed between lower trapezius strength and scapular upward rotation.