pressure, through both cognitive and somatic techniques ( Behncke, 2004 ). This application has tended to be used in a problem-centered way rather than an athlete-centered way ( Holt & Strean, 2001 ), and perhaps consequently, in recent years there has been increased interest in applying other approaches
Rory J. Mack, Jeff D. Breckon, Paul D. O’Halloran and Joanne Butt
Stewart A. Vella
. Athlete-Centered Approach to Youth Sport One philosophy that has been put forward as being capable of informing the design and delivery of youth sport so as to reduce the risk of harm and promote well-being is the athlete-centered approach ( Kerr & Stirling, 2008 ). In line with Keyes’s ( 2002 ) model
Rory Mack, Jeff Breckon, Joanne Butt and Ian Maynard
The purpose of this study was to explore how sport and exercise psychologists working in sport understand and use motivational interviewing (MI). Eleven practitioners participated in semistructured interviews, and inductive thematic analysis identified themes linked to explicit use of MI, such as building engagement and exploring ambivalence to change; the value of MI, such as enhancing the relationship, rolling with resistance and integrating with other approaches; and barriers to the implementation of MI in sport psychology, such as a limited evidence-base in sport. Findings also indicated considerable implicit use of MI by participants, including taking an athlete-centered approach, supporting athlete autonomy, reflective listening, demonstrating accurate empathy, and taking a nonprescriptive, guiding role. This counseling style appears to have several tenets to enhance current practice in sport psychology, not least the enhancement of therapeutic alliance.
Christiane Trottier and Sophie Robitaille
The aim of this study was to gain a deeper understanding of coaches’ perceptions of their role in the development of life skills in adolescent athletes in two different sport contexts. Semistructured interviews were held with 24 coaches: 12 coaching high school basketball and 12 coaching community swimming. All coaches followed a holistic, athlete-centered approach. Coaches described the life skills they taught, their motivations, and the strategies they used to foster life skills development in practice. Although some differences between the two contexts were identified, the overall results indicate that all coaches fostered the development of life skills through various teaching and transfer strategies, and that coaches had two main motivations: athletes’ needs and their own values. The main results are discussed in light of the literature on life skills in sport and positive youth development, and in terms of methodological considerations. The study concludes with some practical recommendations for coaches.
Nicholas L. Holt and William B. Strean
Few studies have considered specific factors of service delivery in applied sport psychology that might contribute to successful outcomes (Petitpas, Giges, & Danish, 1999). It has been suggested that the sport psychology consultant (SPC)-athlete relationship is at the core of athlete-centered approaches (Petitpas et al., 1999; Ravizza, 1990; Thompson, 1998). The purposes of this paper are to discuss issues related to (a) professional education, training, and the role of supervision in the SPC service delivery process; (b) the SPC-athlete relationship; and (c) the need for reflective practice in applied sport psychology. A narrative of self (Sparkes, 2000) is presented by a trainee SPC to demonstrate the practicality of Tripp’s (1993) critical incident reflection exercise. Issues arising from an initial intake meeting with a competitive athlete are reflected upon and analyzed. Reflection is suggested as a tool for education and supervision in applied sport psychology.
Kate Hays, Owen Thomas, Joanne Butt and Ian Maynard
This study documents an ideographic approach to the assessment of sport confidence in applied settings. In contrast to traditional nomothetic measures, confidence profiling provides an assessment of sport confidence from the athlete’s own perspective. Seven athletes (4 male, 3 female) completed the profile and were encouraged to give an accurate account of their sources and types of confidence, and identify the factors that were debilitative to their confidence levels. Reflective practice on the application of confidence profiling, provided by three British Association of Sport and Exercise Science Accredited sport psychologists, demonstrated the versatility of approach, and indicated that the process allowed the athlete to accurately recall their confidence related experiences and attain an accurate and in-depth assessment of their sport confidence. Thus, it was concluded that completed confidence profiles could provide a strong foundation from which athlete-centered interventions might be developed.
Alisa G. Anderson, Zöe Knowles and David Gilbourne
Current training models appear ill equipped to support sport psychology trainees in learning the requisite humanistic skills to provide athlete-centered services (Petitpas, Giges, & Danish, 1999). The aim of this paper is to build a case for the value of reflective practice as an approach to professional training and development that can assist practitioners in effectively managing themselves in practice. In developing the case for reflective practice, we discuss the nature of professional knowledge (Schön, 1987), define reflection, and present popular models of the reflective process from “educare” professions. In addition, we consider the application of reflective practice within sport psychology practice and highlight how reflective practice can benefit the professional and personal development of practitioners. Finally, discussion on appropriate outlets for the dissemination of reflective narratives is undertaken.
Elizabeth A. Applegate
The nutritional considerations of the ultraendurance athlete center around proper caloric and nutrient intake during training as well as adequate energy and fluid replacement during competition to maintain optimal performance. Energy needs of ultraendurance athletes during training vary widely, depending upon duration, intensity, and type of exercise training. These athletes may train several hours daily, thus risking inadequate caloric intake that can lead to chronic fatigue, weight loss, and impaired physical performance. It is not known whether protein needs are increased in ultraendurance athletes as a result of extended exercise training. Additionally, micronutrient needs may be altered for these athletes while dietary intake is generally over the RDA because of high caloric intake. Prior to competition, ultraendurance athletes should consider glycogen supercompensation and a prerace meal eaten 4 hrs before as a means of improving performance. Carbohydrate feedings during prolonged exercise can significantly affect performance. During events lasting over several hours, sodium sweat losses and/or the consumption of sodium-free fluids may precipitate hyponatremia.
Rebecca J. Lloyd and Pierre Trudel
A case study design was used to (a) describe the process and identify the content of the verbal interactions between an eminent mental training consultant and five elite level athletes during ten sessions, and to (b) compare the analyzed sessions with the consultant’s published approach on mental training. The sources of information included the audio recordings of the mental training sessions, the interviews with the consultant, the interviews with the athletes, and two articles published by the consultant. An adapted version of the Flanders’ (1965) Interaction Analysis in the Classroom was used to systematically code the process, and a content analysis was performed on the transcripts of the mental training sessions and interviews. During the sessions, the consultant’s verbal behaviors accounted for 39% of the total coded behaviors leaving 60% for the athletes and 1% for silence. The content analysis revealed that up to 24 topics were addressed in each session (often the athletes would “unload”) where certain issues had a more frequent word count. The analysis of the content and process revealed that the consultant follows an athlete-centered approach that corresponds to the consultant’s published perspective.
Mariya A. Yukhymenko-Lescroart
Quality coaching consists of three components: essential coaching knowledge (i.e., professional knowledge, interpersonal knowledge, and intrapersonal knowledge), athlete-centered outcomes (i.e., competence, confidence, connection, and character), and contextual fit (or coaching environment). The