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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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Johannes Raabe, Katrin Schmidt, Johannes Carl and Oliver Höner

light of these empirical findings, it is important to educate PE teachers and youth sport coaches about autonomy support and how to cultivate an aspiration for lifelong engagement in physical activity among children and adolescents. Researchers have demonstrated that an autonomy-supportive style can be

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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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Athanasios Mouratidis, Willy Lens and Maarten Vansteenkiste

We relied on self-determination theory (SDT; Deci & Ryan, 2000) to investigate to what extent autonomy-supporting corrective feedback (i.e., feedback that coaches communicate to their athletes after poor performance or mistakes) is associated with athletes’ optimal motivation and well-being. To test this hypothesis, we conducted a cross-sectional study with 337 (67.1% males) Greek adolescent athletes (age M = 15.59, SD = 2.37) from various sports. Aligned with SDT, we found through path analysis that an autonomy-supporting versus controlling communication style was positively related to future intentions to persist and well-being and negatively related to ill-being. These relations were partially mediated by the perceived legitimacy of the corrective feedback (i.e., the degree of acceptance of corrective feedback), and, in turn, by intrinsic motivation, identified regulation, and external regulation for doing sports. Results indicate that autonomy-supporting feedback can be still motivating even in cases in which such feedback conveys messages of still too low competence.

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Yew Meng How, Peter Whipp, James Dimmock and Ben Jackson

This study examined whether the provision of choice in physical education (PE) enhanced students’ autonomous motivation, perceived autonomy support, and physical activity (PA) levels, relative to a “regular PE” control group. Students from eight intact high school PE classes (N = 257, Mage = 12.91) were randomly assigned to control (i.e., four classes) and intervention (i.e., four classes) conditions. Students in the intervention group were given a unique opportunity to choose their preferred participatory role in their PE units, while control students participated in normal teacher-led PE, and data were collected over a 15-week program (i.e., three units of five weeks each). The results indicated that a lack of choice in PE aligned with less positive perceptions of autonomy support among students within the control group, compared with their counterparts in the intervention group. In some choice formats, students exhibited significantly higher PA levels than students who undertook normal PE. These findings indicate that offering choice in high school PE lessons may encourage perceptions of autonomy support and levels of in-class physical activity.

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Reza Abdollahipour, Ludvík Valtr and Gabriele Wulf

, autonomy support) and one is related to the performer’s focus of attention (external focus). Each factor independently has been shown to enhance the performance and learning of various types of motor skills (e.g.,  Lewthwaite, Chiviacowsky, Drews, & Wulf, 2015 ; Stoate, Wulf, & Lewthwaite, 2012 ; Wulf

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Ian M. Taylor and Chris Lonsdale

Using basic psychological needs theory (BPNT; Ryan & Deci, 2000) as our guiding framework, we explored cultural differences in the relationships among physical education students’ perceptions of teacher autonomy support, psychological need satisfaction, subjective vitality and effort in class. Seven hundred and fifteen students (age range from 13 to 15 years) from the U.K. and Hong Kong, China, completed a multisection inventory during a timetabled physical education class. Multilevel analyses revealed that the relationships among autonomy support, subjective vitality and effort were mediated by students’ perceptions of psychological need satisfaction. The relationship between autonomy support and perceptions of competence was stronger in the Chinese sample, compared with the U.K. sample. In addition, the relationship between perceptions of relatedness and effort was not significant in the Chinese students. The findings generally support the pan-cultural utility of BPNT and imply that a teacher-created autonomy supportive environment may promote positive student experiences in both cultures.

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Andreas Heissel, Anou Pietrek, Michael A. Rapp, Stephan Heinzel and Geoffrey Williams

autonomy. In SDT theory the providers’ autonomy support is seen as necessary to achieve long-term autonomous self-regulation ( Deci & Ryan, 1985 ; Ryan & Deci, 2006 , 2017 ). The concept of autonomy support includes respect for patients’ experience by giving them structure and, at the same time, being

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Thomas Curran, Andrew P. Hill and Christopher P. Niemiec

The potential benefits of children’s engagement in sport for their psychological, social, and physical health are well established. Yet children may also experience psychological and social impairments due, in part, to a variety of detrimental coach behaviors. In the current study, we proposed and tested a conditional process model of children’s self-reported behavioral engagement and behavioral disaffection in sport based on self-determination theory. Results from a sample of 245 youth soccer players suggested that structure from coaches related positively to behavioral engagement and negatively to behavioral disaffection, and that these relations were mediated by athletes’ basic psychological need satisfaction. Importantly, and in line with our hypotheses, these indirect effects were moderated by autonomy support from coaches, such that the mediation was evident only among those who reported higher levels of autonomy support. These findings underscore the importance of coaches’ providing guidance, expectations, and feedback (i.e., structure) in a way that respects athletes’ volition (i.e., autonomy support).

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Eleanor Quested and Joan L. Duda

Grounded in the basic needs mini-theory (Deci & Ryan, 2000), this study examined the interplay among perceptions of the social environment manifested in vocational dance schools, basic need satisfaction, and indices of elite dancers’ well- and ill-being. The hypothesized mediating role of need satisfaction was also tested. Dancers (N = 392) completed a questionnaire tapping the targeted variables. Structural equation modeling supported a model in which perceptions of task-involving dance environments positively predicted need satisfaction. Perceived ego-involving climates negatively corresponded with competence and relatedness. Perceptions of autonomy support were positively related to autonomy and relatedness. Need satisfaction positively predicted positive affect. Competence and relatedness satisfaction corresponded negatively to reported negative affect. Emotional and physical exhaustion was not related to need satisfaction. Partial support emerged for the assumed mediation of the needs. Results highlight the relevance of task-involving and autonomy-supportive dance climates for elite dancers’ need satisfaction and healthful engagement in vocational dance.