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Katherine A. Tamminen, Patrick Gaudreau, Carolyn E. McEwen and Peter R.E. Crocker

Efforts to regulate emotions can influence others, and interpersonal emotion regulation within teams may affect athletes’ own affective and motivational outcomes. We examined adolescent athletes’ (N = 451, N teams = 38) self- and interpersonal emotion regulation, as well as associations with peer climate, sport enjoyment, and sport commitment within a multilevel model of emotion regulation in teams. Results of multilevel Bayesian structural equation modeling showed that athletes’ self-worsening emotion regulation strategies were negatively associated with enjoyment while other-improving emotion regulation strategies were positively associated enjoyment and commitment. The team-level interpersonal emotion regulation climate and peer motivational climates were also associated with enjoyment and commitment. Team-level factors moderated some of the relationships between athletes’ emotion regulation with enjoyment and commitment. These findings extend previous research by examining interpersonal emotion regulation within teams using a multilevel approach, and they demonstrate the importance of person- and team-level factors for athletes’ enjoyment and commitment.

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Valentina D’Urso, Andreina Petrosso and Claudio Robazza

This study was mainly designed to contrast the Individual Zones of Optimal Functioning (IZOF) emotion model and the performance profiling approach in predicting performance of rugby players based on normative, individualized, situational, and relatively stable characteristics. Pregame assessments were accomplished in 33 male Italian rugby players of a top-level team over a whole championship, and individual interviews were conducted at the end of the season. Performance differentiation and discrimination between athletes were reached on relatively stable qualities (i.e., constructs), according to predictions within the performance profile framework. Study findings also revealed that emotions modify widely during the game because of external events (e.g., behaviors of teammates or opponents) or individual behaviors (e.g., individual faults). In conclusion, findings add support to the contention that extending the IZOF model to other physical or performance related components would require situational rather than relatively stable qualities. On the other hand, the concept of zones extended to constructs seems beneficial for practical purposes.

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Andrew G. Wood, Jamie B. Barker and Martin J. Turner

Rational emotive behavior therapy (REBT; Ellis, 1957) is a psychotherapeutic approach receiving increasing interest within sport. REBT is focused on identifying, disputing, and replacing irrational beliefs (IBs) with rational beliefs (RBs) to promote emotional well-being and goal achievement. This study provides a detailed case outlining the application and effect of seven one-to-one REBT sessions with an elite level archer who was experiencing performance-related anxiety, before and during competition. The case also offers an insight into common misconceptions, challenges, and guidance for those who may consider applying REBT within their practice. Data revealed meaningful short and long-term (6-months) reductions in IBs and improvements in RBs, self-efficacy, perception of control and archery performance. The case supports the effective application of REBT as an intervention with athletic performers, promoting lasting changes in an athlete’s ability to manage their cognitions, emotions and behaviors in the pursuit of performance excellence.

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Anne Marte Pensgaard and Joan L. Duda

Drawing upon the Cognitive-Motivational-Relational Theory of Emotion (Lazarus, 1991, 1999, 2000) and Hanin’s (1993, 2000) conceptualization of emotions, the purpose of this study was threefold. First, the reported content, frequency, and intensity of emotions experienced by 61 athletes in relation to a stressful event when competing in the 2000 Olympic Games were determined. Second, the relationships between emotional responses and reported coping strategies and perceived coping effectiveness were examined. Finally, the degree to which emotions and perceived coping effectiveness predicted subjective and objective performance during the Olympics was ascertained. In general, the athletes experienced a high frequency of optimizing emotions. Optimizing emotions were related to coping effectiveness, which emerged as a positive predictor of objective competitive results. Coping effectiveness also positively predicted subjective performance while reported dysfunctional emotions emerged as a negative predictor.

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Martin J. Turner, Marc V. Jones, David Sheffield, Matthew J. Slater, Jamie B. Barker and James J. Bell

This study assessed whether cardiovascular (CV) reactivity patterns indexing challenge and threat states predicted batting performance in elite male county (N = 12) and national (N = 30) academy cricketers. Participants completed a batting test under pressure, before which CV reactivity was recorded in response to ego-threatening audio instructions. Self-reported self-efficacy, control, achievement goals, and emotions were also assessed. Challenge CV reactivity predicted superior performance in the Batting Test, compared with threat CV reactivity. The relationships between self-report measures and CV reactivity, and self-report measures and performance were inconsistent. A small subsample of participants who exhibited threat CV reactivity, but performed well, reported greater self-efficacy than participants who exhibited threat CV reactivity, but performed poorly. Also a small subsample of participants who exhibited challenge reactivity, but performed poorly, had higher avoidance goals than participants with challenge reactivity who performed well. The mechanisms for the observed relationship between CV reactivity and performance are discussed alongside implications for future research and applied practice.

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Marci D. Cottingham

The study of sport spectatorship has an increasing focus on the importance of fandom beyond fan violence. Fundamental to understanding fan behavior are the meaningful rituals and emotions experienced by fans. In this paper, I use the theoretical work of Randall Collins to examine the ritualistic outcomes of collective effervescence, emotional energy, and group symbols and solidarity among sport fans. I illustrate these concepts using case study data from participant observation of fans of a U.S. football team, the Pittsburgh Steelers, and content analysis of news articles. I extend Collins’ interaction ritual (IR) theory by taking the group as the unit of analysis and analyzing group solidarity beyond situational interactions and typical sport settings, including the significant life events of weddings and funerals. While critiquing Collins’ (2004) a priori portrayal of sports fans, the analysis advances IR theory, improving its utility for understanding sports fan behavior.

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Daniel T. Bishop, Costas I. Karageorghis and Noel P. Kinrade

The main objective of the current study was to examine the impact of musically induced emotions on athletes’ subsequent choice reaction time (CRT) performance. A random sample of 54 tennis players listened to researcher-selected music whose tempo and intensity were modified to yield six different music excerpts (three tempi × two intensities) before completing a CRT task. Affective responses, heart rate (HR), and RTs for each condition were contrasted with white noise and silence conditions. As predicted, faster music tempi elicited more pleasant and aroused emotional states; and higher music intensity yielded both higher arousal (p < .001) and faster subsequent CRT performance (p < .001). White noise was judged significantly less pleasant than all experimental conditions (p < .001); and silence was significantly less arousing than all but one experimental condition (p < .001). The implications for athletes’ use of music as part of a preevent routine when preparing for reactive tasks are discussed.

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Parminder K. Flora, Shaelyn M. Strachan, Lawrence R. Brawley and Kevin S. Spink

Research on exercise identity (EXID) indicates that it is related to negative affect when exercisers are inconsistent or relapse. Although identity theory suggests that causal attributions about this inconsistency elicit negative self-conscious emotions of shame and guilt, no EXID studies have examined this for exercise relapse. Weiner’s attribution-based theory of interpersonal motivation (2010) offers a means of testing the attribution-emotion link. Using both frameworks, we examined whether EXID and attributional properties predicted negative emotions for exercise relapse. Participants (n = 224) read an exercise relapse vignette, and then completed EXID, attributions, and emotion measures. Hierarchical multiple regression models using EXID and the attributional property of controllability significantly predicted each of shame and guilt, R 2 adjusted = .09, ps ≤ .001. Results support identity theory suggestions and Weiner’s specific attribution-emotion hypothesis. This first demonstration of an interlinking of EXID, controllability, and negative self-conscious emotions offers more predictive utility using complementary theories than either theory alone.

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Jane Lee Sinden

The present study examines Foucault’s (1977) concept of normalization as it applies to the emotions of female elite amateur rowers. Specifically, this study sought to understand how beliefs about emotion, developed through the normalization process, may coerce athletes to continue to train even when physically unhealthy. Interviews were conducted with 11 retired elite amateur female rowers who suffered health problems while training but continued training despite these health problems. Interpretation of the data suggests that the rowers suppressed emotions to avoid appearing mentally weak, negative, or irrational, despite needing to express their concerns about training volumes and health issues to minimize deleterious effects that continued training eventually had on their health.

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Adam James Miles, Rich Neil and Jamie Barker

The purpose of this study was to explore the stress, emotion, and coping (SEC) experiences of elite cricketers leading up to and on the day of their first competitive fixture of the season. Four elite male cricketers (M = 21.25, SD = 1.5) completed Stress and Emotion Diaries (SEDs) for the 7-day period leading up to and on the day of their first competitive fixture of the season. We then interviewed the cricketers to explore the content of the SEDs in more detail. We used semistructured interviews to glean insight into the stressors, cognitions, emotions, coping strategies, and behaviors. Inductive and deductive content data analysis provided a holistic and temporal exploration of the SEC process underpinned by the cognitive-motivational-relational theory of emotions (Lazarus, 1999). The results highlighted the ongoing and continuous nature of the SEC process while illustrating the coping strategies the cricketers used leading up to and on the day of competition.