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Athanasios Papaioannou, Herbert W. Marsh and Yannis Theodorakis

Motivational climate is inherently a group-level construct so that longitudinal, multilevel designs are needed to evaluate its effects on subsequent outcomes. Based on a large sample of physical education classes (2,786 students, 200 classes, 67 teachers), we evaluated the effects of classroom motivational climate (task-involving and ego-involving) and individual goal orientations (task and ego) on individual students’ outcomes (intrinsic motivation, attitudes, physical self-concept, and exercise intentions) collected early (T1) and late (T2) in the school year. Using a multilevel approach, we found significant class-average differences in motivational climate at T1 that had positive effects on T2 outcomes after controlling T1 outcomes. Although there was no support for a “compatibility hypothesis” (e.g., that task oriented students were more benefited by task-involving motivation climates), the stability of goal orientations was undermined by incompatible climates.

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Sara A. Officer and Lawrence B. Rosenfeld

This investigation examined the effects of sport team membership and coach's gender on the self-disclosing behavior of high school female varsity athletes. Results indicated that the athletes disclosed the same amount to their male and female coaches and that this was less than they disclosed to either parent or to friends of either sex. Also, athletes on cross-country teams disclosed more than did those on gymnastic, volleyball, and basketball teams. Finally, patterns of disclosure to male and female coaches were found to differ. First, topics of disclosure to female coaches were concerned primarily with self-concept development and role clarification, whereas topics of disclosure to male coaches were concerned primarily with school matters and interaction with significant males. Second, although amount of disclosure to the female coach was positively correlated with the athlete's disclosure to strangers, disclosure to the male coach was positively correlated with her disclosure to friends. Implications for the coach/athlete relationship are discussed.

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Timothy Jon Curry and Jeffrey S. Weaner

The social psychological concept of identity has been recognized as an important approach to the study of role-related behavior, including sports behavior. Identity has been linked theoretically to the self-concept via the notion of a salience hierarchy, and the salience of an identity in turn has been shown to be associated with time spent in role and other measures of role performance. In this article we present some measurement procedures for the study of the sport identity, and we demonstrate the utility of these procedures by testing hypotheses derived from Stryker and Serpe’s (1982) research on religious role behavior. The sample used to test these hypotheses is a purposive sample of 220 male college students and athletes.

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Martyn Standage, Fiona B. Gillison, Nikos Ntoumanis and Darren C. Treasure

A three-wave prospective design was used to assess a model of motivation guided by self-determination theory (Ryan & Deci, 2008) spanning the contexts of school physical education (PE) and exercise. The outcome variables examined were health-related quality of life (HRQoL), physical self-concept (PSC), and 4 days of objectively assessed estimates of activity. Secondary school students (n = 494) completed questionnaires at three separate time points and were familiarized with how to use a sealed pedometer. Results of structural equation modeling supported a model in which perceptions of autonomy support from a PE teacher positively predicted PE-related need satisfaction (autonomy, competence, and relatedness). Competence predicted PSC, whereas relatedness predicted HRQoL. Autonomy and competence positively predicted autonomous motivation toward PE, which in turn positively predicted autonomous motivation toward exercise (i.e., 4-day pedometer step count). Autonomous motivation toward exercise positively predicted step count, HRQoL, and PSC. Results of multisample structural equation modeling supported gender invariance. Suggestions for future work are discussed.

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Herbert W. Marsh, Andrew J. Martin and Susan Jackson

Based on the Physical Self Description Questionnaire (PSDQ) normative archive (n = 1,607 Australian adolescents), 40 of 70 items were selected to construct a new short form (PSDQ-S). The PSDQ-S was evaluated in a new cross-validation sample of 708 Australian adolescents and four additional samples: 349 Australian elite-athlete adolescents, 986 Spanish adolescents, 395 Israeli university students, 760 Australian older adults. Across these six groups, the 11 PSDQ-S factors had consistently high reliabilities and invariant factor structures. Study 1, using a missing-by-design variation of multigroup invariance tests, showed invariance across 40 PSDQ-S items and 70 PSDQ items. Study 2 demonstrated factorial invariance over a 1-year interval (test–retest correlations .57–.90; Mdn = .77), and good convergent and discriminant validity in relation to time. Study 3 showed good and nearly identical support for convergent and discriminant validity of PSDQ and PSDQ-S responses in relation to two other physical self-concept instruments.

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Naomi Fejgin

Longitudinal data from a nationally representative sample of 10th graders (National Educational Longitudinal Study of 1988 First Follow-Up) were used to assess the net effect of athletic participation on student outcomes after controlling for student background and 8th-grade measures of the dependent variables. The analyses show positive effects of sport participation on grades, self-concept, locus of control, and educational aspirations, and a negative effect on discipline problems. Analysis also shows that athletic participation is unequally distributed across gender and socioeconomic groups: Males, students from higher socioeconomic levels, students attending private and smaller schools, and those with previous experience in school and private sport teams are more engaged in high school competitive sport.

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Paul John Gately, Carlton Brian Cooke, Ron John Butterly, Charlotte Knight and Sean Carroll

One hundred and ninety-four children enrolled in a summer weight loss camp program (64 boys and 130 girls, aged 12.6 ± 2.5 years) and were assessed for body mass and stature on arrival. One hundred and fourteen subjects were assessed for waist circumference, with a subgroup of 14 boys assessed on 8 skinfold thicknesses, 9 circumference measures, and a self-paced walk test to evaluate aerobic performance. A further group of 40 girls were assessed on 3 psychometric variables (self concept, body esteem, and body cathexis). During the camp (located in Massachusetts, U.S.), diet was restricted to 1,400 kcal · day−1, with a daily prescription of structured fun-type, skill-based physical activities and regular behavioral and educational sessions. Paired t tests showed highly significant improvements (p < .001) in all variables comparing pre and post intervention measures. The improvements in body composition, aerobic performance, and psychometric variables suggest that the camp program was successful in reducing significant risk factors in children’s health.

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Andrew E. Springer, Steven H. Kelder, Nalini Ranjit, Heather Hochberg-Garrett, Sherman Crow and Joanne Delk


Marathon Kids® (MK) is a community and school-based program that promotes running, walking, and healthy eating in elementary school children. This study assessed the impact of MK on self-reported physical activity (PA), fruit and vegetable consumption (FVC), and related psycho-social factors in a sample of low-income, 4th- and 5th-grade students in Texas (n = 511). Intervention strategies included structured school running time, behavioral tracking, celebratory events, and rewards.


A quasi-experimental design with 5 intervention (MK) and 3 comparison schools was employed. Students were assessed at baseline in the fall and at 3 time points during 2008 to 09. Mixed-effect regression methods were used to model pooled means, adjusting for baseline and sociodemographic variables.


MK students reported a higher mean time of running in past 7 days compared with non-MK students (mean = 4.38 vs. 3.83, respectively. P = .002), with a standardized effect size of 0.16. Mean times of FVC (P = .008), athletic identity self-concept (P < .001), PA outcome expectations (P = .007), and PA and FVC self-efficacy (P < .001 and P = .02, respectively) were also higher in MK students. Fewer differences in social support were observed.


Findings provide further evidence on the importance of community and school partnerships for promoting PA and healthy eating in children.

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Ruth Ference and K. Denise Muth

The purpose of the study was to investigate how involvement in exercise and participation in team sports were related to the multidimension self-perceptions of middle school females. The study was conducted in 2 middle schools with 181 8th-grade females. Instruments used were the Physical Activity Survey and Harter’s Self-Perception Profile for Children. Results show that participation in team sports was related to four domains of self-perception: social acceptance, athletic competence, scholastic competence, and global self-worth. Informal exercise was related to social acceptance and global self-worth of middle school females. Therefore, it appears that both team sports and exercise may be important in enhancing self-concept in middle school females. Results also show that over half of middle school females in this study participated in three or more team sports during middle school. However, almost half of these students report exercising informally less than three times a week. These results support the increased opportunities of team sports for middle school females.

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Bettina Callary, Scott Rathwell and Bradley W. Young

Coaches working with Masters Athletes (MAs) are tasked with facilitating learning and enhancing performance and quality of experience specifically for an adult cohort. In education, the Andragogy in Practice Model (APM) characterizes adult learners and provides teachers with principles for how to best facilitate learning (Knowles, Holton III, & Swanson, 2012). The purpose of the current study was to explore how coaches describe approaches with their MAs to discover how they align with andragogical principles. Eleven coaches were interviewed regarding their approaches in working with Masters swimmers. Data were thematically analyzed according to the six APM principles. The results revealed the bidirectional pattern of communication between the coaches and MAs, the coaches’ awareness of the athletes’ matured self-concept and prior experiences, the personalized goal oriented approach, the various approaches coaches used to motivate, and strategies that the coaches used to prepare MAs for training. The findings suggest that coaches who reported approaches in keeping with andragogical principles more effectively accommodated their MAs’ interests. When their approaches countered the principles, there appeared to be a disconnect between the coaches’ approaches and the MAs’ preferences. Together, these results provide evidence of the importance of coaches’ understanding of adult learning principles when coaching MAs.