This paper examines the relationship between precompetitive affect and performance, using elements of reversal theory (Apter, 1982): a conceptual framework that incorporates a full range of pleasant and unpleasant moods. Nine elite male slalom canoeists completed questionnaires prior to each event of a season that included the world championships. Results were analyzed using a time-series model to make comparisons of each subject’s best and worst performance of the season. Predicted variations in precompetitive levels of pleasant and unpleasant mood did not occur, despite variations in subsequent performances. As predicted, good performances were preceded by low discrepancies between felt and preferred arousal levels, but there was no support for the hypothesis that a large discrepancy between perceived stress and coping efforts would precede a poor performance.
Jonathan R. Males and John H. Kerr
Lee J. Moore, Mark R. Wilson, Samuel J. Vine, Adam H. Coussens and Paul Freeman
The present research examined the immediate impact of challenge and threat states on golf performance in both real competition and a laboratory-based task. In Study 1, 199 experienced golfers reported their evaluations of competition demands and personal coping resources before a golf competition. Evaluating the competition as a challenge (i.e., sufficient resources to cope with demands) was associated with superior performance. In Study 2, 60 experienced golfers randomly received challenge or threat manipulation instructions and then performed a competitive golf-putting task. Challenge and threat states were successfully manipulated and the challenge group outperformed the threat group. Furthermore, the challenge group reported less anxiety, more facilitative interpretations of anxiety, less conscious processing, and displayed longer quiet eye durations. However, these variables failed to mediate the group–performance relationship. These studies demonstrate the importance of considering preperformance psychophysiological states when examining the influence of competitive pressure on motor performance.
Carolina Lundqvist and Fredrik Sandin
This study examined subjective (SWB), psychological (PWB) and social well-being (Social WB) at a global and sport contextual level among ten elite orienteers (6 women and 4 men, median age = 20.4, range 18–30) by employing semistructured interviews. Athletes described SWB as an interplay of satisfaction with life, sport experiences and perceived health combined with experienced enjoyment and happiness in both ordinary life and sport. SWB and PWB interacted, and important psychological functioning among the elite athletes included, among other things, abilities to adopt value-driven behaviors, be part of functional relationships, and to self-regulate one’s autonomy. The ability to organize and combine ordinary life with elite sport, and the use of strategies to protect the self during setbacks was also emphasized. For a comprehensive theoretical understanding of well-being applicable to elite athletes, the need for a holistic view considering both global and sport-specific aspects of WB is discussed.
Martin Roderick, Andy Smith and Paul Potrac
Eric Yiou, Manon Gendre, Thomas Deroche and Serge Le Bozec
This study examined how pleasant and unpleasant emotional states influence the biomechanical organization of both forward and backward step initiation (SI). Participants (N = 31) purposely took a single step toward or away from a screen following the presentation of a pleasant (erotic), unpleasant (mutilation) or neutral (objects and landscapes) image. The main results showed that the reaction time for forward SI was shortened when individuals were exposed to pleasant pictures as compared with unpleasant pictures. The anticipatory whole-body center-ofmass velocity associated with backward SI, as well as the peak of center-of-mass velocity associated with forward SI both reached lower values when individuals were exposed to pleasant pictures as compared with neutral pictures. In contrast, unpleasant pictures did not significantly induce any change in the forward or backward SI parameters. Overall, these results obtained for whole-body approach/avoidance-like behaviors provided mitigated support for the so-called “motivational direction hypothesis.”
Tara Edwards, Lew Hardy, Kieran Kingston and Dan Gould
Structured in-depth interviews explored the catastrophic experiences of eight elite performers. Participants responded to questions concerning an event in which they felt they had experienced an uncharacteristic but very noticeable drop in their performance, a “performance catastrophe.” Inductive and deductive analyses were employed to provide a clear representation of the data. This paper reports on how the dimensions emerging from the hierarchical content analysis changed from prior to the catastrophic drop in performance, during the drop, and after the drop (in terms of any recovery). Two emerging higher order dimensions, “sudden, substantial drop in performance” and “performance continued to deteriorate” provide support for one of the fundamental underpinnings of the catastrophe model (Hardy, 1990, 1996a, 1996b); that is, performance decrements do not follow a smooth and continuous path. The paper examines the implications of the findings with respect to applied practice and future research.
Carolina Lundqvist and Göran Kenttä
The purpose of this study was to psychometrically evaluate the Emotional Recovery Questionnaire (EmRecQ) and to describe athletes’ individual response patterns in five repeated assessments using the EmRecQ. Three samples were used. Samples 1 and 2 consisted of 192 and 379 (Mean age 16.4 years, SD = 0.7 and Mean age: 17.0 years, SD = 1.1) elite athletes from different sports. The third sample consisted of 20 (Mean age: 21.3, SD = 19.0) female elite basketball players. The EmRecQ is a 22-item questionnaire that assesses Happiness, Security, Harmony, Love, and Vitality. Results showed acceptable weighted omega reliability and construct reliability. Confirmatory factor analyses supported the a priori specified five-factor correlated model. Case profiles of repeated assessments revealed individual response patterns of the separate EmRecQ subscales that corresponded well with rated training load and total quality of recovery. The findings provide support for the EmRecQ’s psychometric properties and applied usefulness.
Jessica Ross and Peter D. MacIntyre
, 2014 ; Ullén et al., 2012 ), while others have hypothesized that the ability to regulate emotions may play an important role ( Quoidbach, Mikolajczak, & Gross, 2015 ; Tavares & Freire, 2016 ). This study considers both personality traits and emotion regulation, examining the relationship between
Elizabeth B. Delia
team’s successes as if they are their own ( Cialdini et al., 1976 ), they also have little control over those successes (or failures), nor the day-to-day operations of the entity. Thus, when enduring stressful situations, sport fans may use a variety of emotion-focused coping strategies, such as
Pedro Teques, Luís Calmeiro, Henrique Martins, Daniel Duarte and Nicholas L. Holt
) experience a variety of emotions, and (c) have the need to monitor others’ and their own emotions, it is plausible that emotional intelligence (EI) will enable parents to cope with their children’s competitive situations and behave in appropriate ways. Indeed, Harwood and Knight ( 2015 ) recently suggested