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Sung Hyeon Cheon, Johnmarshall Reeve, Tae Ho Yu and Hue Ryen Jang

Recognizing that students benefit when they receive autonomy-supportive teaching, the current study tested the parallel hypothesis that teachers themselves would benefit from giving autonomy support. Twenty-seven elementary, middle, and high school physical education teachers (20 males, 7 females) were randomly assigned either to participate in an autonomy-supportive intervention program (experimental group) or to teach their physical education course with their existing style (control group) within a three-wave longitudinal research design. Manipulation checks showed that the intervention was successful, as students perceived and raters scored teachers in the experimental group as displaying a more autonomy-supportive and less controlling motivating style. In the main analyses, ANCOVA-based repeated-measures analyses showed large and consistent benefits for teachers in the experimental group, including greater teaching motivation (psychological need satisfaction, autonomous motivation, and intrinsic goals), teaching skill (teaching efficacy), and teaching well-being (vitality, job satisfaction, and lesser emotional and physical exhaustion). These findings show that giving autonomy support benefits teachers in much the same way that receiving it benefits their students.

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Jody Langdon, Brandonn S. Harris, Glenn P. Burdette III and Sara Rothberger

Studying perceived autonomy support, a basic tenet of self-determination theory (Deci & Ryan, 2000), provides some understanding as to how coaches can more positively influence youth athletes to enjoy and persist in youth sport. Borrowing insights from success in physical education and coaching-oriented interventions, the purpose of this paper was to highlight positive aspects and challenges of an innovative youth sport autonomy supportive training program for coaches. Positives included the initial training session and the use of an online training component. Challenges were the structure of the season, other coaches, and possibly the age of the athletes. Future training programs in youth sport coaching should increase in duration, provide specific examples of how to implement autonomy supportive coaching behaviors, as well as address solutions to the time constraints of the youth sport setting.

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Juliette Stebbings, Ian M. Taylor and Christopher M. Spray

Within the self-determination theory (Deci & Ryan, 2000) framework, research has considered the consequences of coaches’ autonomy supportive and controlling behaviors on various athlete outcomes (e.g., motivation and performance). The antecedents of such behaviors, however, have received little attention. Coaches (N = 443) from a variety of sports and competitive levels completed a self-report questionnaire to assess their psychological need satisfaction, well-being and perceived interpersonal behaviors toward their athletes. Structural equation modeling demonstrated that coaches’ competence and autonomy need satisfaction positively predicted their levels of psychological well-being, as indexed by positive affect and subjective vitality. In turn, coaches’ psychological well-being positively predicted their perceived autonomy support toward their athletes, and negatively predicted their perceived controlling behaviors. Overall, the results highlight the importance of coaching contexts that facilitate coaches’ psychological need satisfaction and well-being, thereby increasing the likelihood of adaptive coach interpersonal behavior toward athletes.

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Amanda J. Reynolds and Meghan H. McDonough

We examined whether coach involvement moderated the predictive effect of coach autonomy support on motivation both directly and indirectly via need satisfaction. 142 soccer players (106 female; 12-15 years) completed measures of coach autonomy support and involvement, need satisfaction, and motivation. For intrinsic motivation and identified regulation, need satisfaction mediated the effect of autonomy support, but there was also a moderated direct effect whereby autonomy support had a positive effect only when involvement was moderate to high. Autonomy support also positively predicted external regulation and negatively predicted amotivation via need satisfaction. Coach-athlete relationships that are both autonomy supportive and involved are associated with more adaptive forms of motivation, and findings suggest that lack of autonomy support may undermine need satisfaction and motivation.

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David Welch Suggs Jr.

Sports reporters depend on access to events and sources as much or more than any other news professional. Over the past few years, some sports organizations have attempted to restrict such access, as well as what reporters can publish via social media. In the digital era, access and publishing autonomy, as institutionalized concepts, are evolving rapidly. Hypotheses tying access and work practices to reporters’ perceptions of the legitimacy they experience are developed and tested via a structural equation model, using responses to a survey of journalists in American intercollegiate athletics and observed dimensions of access and autonomy to measure a latent variable of legitimacy. The model suggests that reporters have mixed views about whether they possess the legitimacy they need to do their jobs.

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Gabriel J. Sanders, Judith Juvancic-Heltzel, Megan L. Williamson, James N. Roemmich, Denise M. Feda and Jacob E. Barkley

Background:

Increasing autonomy by manipulating the choice of available physical activity options in a laboratory setting can increase physical activity in older children and adults. However, the effect of manipulating the number of physically active choices has yet to be examined in young children in a gymnasium environment.

Methods:

Twenty children (n = 10 girls, 6.1 ± 1.4 years old) individually participated in 2 [low choice (LC), high choice (HC)] free-choice activity conditions for 30 minutes in a 4360 square foot gymnasium. Children had access to 2 or 8 physical activity options in the LC and HC conditions, respectively. Physical activity behavior was measured via accelerometry.

Results:

Children’s 30-minute accelerometer counts increased (P < .03) from the LC (2675 ± 294 counts·min-1) to the HC (3224 ± 280 counts·min-1) condition.

Conclusions:

Providing greater autonomy through choice of a greater number of physically active options increased young children’s physical activity participation by 20.5%.

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Christian Collet, Aymeric Guillot, Olivier Bolliet and André Dittmar

Purpose:

To examine the preparation phase for the snatch lift in Olympic weight lifting. Two behavioral periods were studied, each corresponding to specific mental processes: a stance in front of the bar and placement of hands on the bar. Each period was hypothesized to elicit different responses of autonomic-nervous-system activity.

Methods:

Twelve elite male subjects completed 12 lifts at 90% to 95% of their best grade after warm-up (80% of their best grade). Because peripheral autonomic-nervous-system activity is related to arousal and activation variation, 6 variables were continuously recorded: electrodermal (skin resistance and potential), thermovascular (skin temperature and skin blood flow), and cardiorespiratory (heart rate and respiratory frequency).

Results:

Responses (ie, phasic activities) were evident during the fi rst behavioral period. Decrease in heart rate (mean = 19 beats/min) or in respiratory frequency (mean = 8.6 beats/min) was related to attention processes. These responses were weaker (−0.16°C vs −0.25°C in skin temperature) and shorter (2.7 seconds vs 4.3 seconds in skin resistance) than those recorded during execution. The second phase showed variations in basal levels (mean increase in heart rate of 25%), related to increase in activation, thus attesting the muscle system’s process of preparation for effort.

Conclusion:

Weight lifters separated the preparation phase into 2 stages that were closely matched by different physiological activities. Weight lifting requires participants to share their mental resources among the 2 demanding concentration phases by first focusing their attention on the execution and then mobilizing energizing resources.

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Stephanie M. Mazerolle, Thomas G. Bowman and Jessica L. Barrett

Clinical education provides the backbone for the socialization process for athletic trainers. It is the chance for students to engage in the role, within a real-time learning environment that allows for not only the adoption of knowledge, skills, and critical decision making, but also the profession’s foundational behaviors of professional practice. Recent criticisms of the current education model, in which the degree is conferred, center on the lack of critical thinking and confidence in clinical practice for newly-credentialed athletic trainers, as many suggest there is concern for the abilities of students to transition to practice smoothly. We offer three areas of focus for clinical education experiences for students (autonomy, mentorship, and feedback), believing this could support the development of independent thinking and confidence in skills. Our discussions are focused on the evidence available, as well as personal experiences as educators and program administrators.

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Douglas R. Seals, Kevin D. Monahan, Christopher Bell, Hirofumi Tanaka and Pamela P. Jones

Tonic vagal modulation of cardiac period (R-R interval) decreases with advancing age, but is greater in middle-aged and older adults who habitually perform aerobic exercise compared with their sedentary peers. Cardiovagal baroreflex sensitivity also declines markedly with age in sedentary adults but only 50% as much in regularly exercising adults. In previously sedentary middle-aged and older adults, a 3-month program of moderate aerobic exercise increases cardiovagal baroreflex sensitivity by 25%. Tonic (basal) sympathetic nervous system (SNS) activity increases with advancing age in both sedentary and habitually exercising adults. Despite this, SNS b-adrenergic support of energy metabolism (resting metabolic rate-RMR) declines with age in sedentary individuals. However, SNS b-adrenergic support of RMR is maintained with age inenduranceexercise-trainedadultsandthereforeismuchgreaterinmiddle-aged and older individuals who exercise regularly compared with their sedentary peers. Thus, regular aerobic (endurance) exercise modulates selective age associated impairments in autonomic nervous system-physiological function.

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Camilla Yuri Kawanishi and Márcia Greguol

This study aimed to perform a systematic review of studies that address the influence of physical activity on the quality of life and functional independence of adult individuals with spinal cord injury. The review was performed using data obtained from the MEDLINE, CINAHL, SciELO, LILACS, SPORTDiscus, Web of Science, Academic Search Premier, and PEDro databases using the following keywords: quality of life; functional independence; autonomy; independence; physical activity; activities of daily living; physical exercise; tetraplegia; paraplegia; spinal cord injury; physical disabilities; and wheelchair. Eleven studies met the inclusion criteria. Although there was a lack of consensus among the selected studies, the majority of them presented a strong correlation between physical activity and variables of quality of life and/or functional independence. Thus, physical activity appears to have an important influence on social relationships, functional independence, psychological factors, and physical aspects, which can enhance quality of life and independence in the performance of daily activities.