Based on research on stereotype threat and multiple identities, this work explores the beneficial effects of activating a positive social identity when a negative identity is salient on women’s performance in sports. Further, in line with research on the effects of anxiety in sports, we investigate whether the activation of a positive social identity buffers performance from cognitive anxiety associated with a negative stereotype. Two experiments tested these predictions in field settings. Experiment 1 (N = 83) shows that the simultaneous activation of a positive (i.e., member of a soccer team) and a negative social identity (i.e., woman) led to better performance than the activation of only a negative social identity for female soccer players. Experiment 2 (N = 46) demonstrates that identity condition moderated the effect of cognitive anxiety on performance for female basketball players. Results are discussed concerning multiple identities’ potential for dealing with stressful situations.
Sarah E. Martiny, Ilka H. Gleibs, Elizabeth J. Parks-Stamm, Torsten Martiny-Huenger, Laura Froehlich, Anna-Lena Harter, and Jenny Roth
Anne Marie Bird and Melanie A. Horn
This investigation tested the relationship between level of cognitive anxiety and degree of mental errors in a sport setting. Subjects were female high school varsity softball players. The dimensions of cognitive anxiety, somatic anxiety, and self-confidence were assessed by the Competitive State Anxiety Inventory-2 (CSAI-2). Coaches evaluated mental errors during game play by ratings on a 10-point bipolar scale. Final subject selection was determined by dichotomizing individuals who scored lower on the scale (1-4) and higher on the scale (7-10). Analysis of variance yielded a single significant main effect which indicated that the two mental-error groups differed in cognitive anxiety. This supports the major prediction tested. Discussion centers on the apparent benefits of investigating variables more intimately associated with the attentional/cognitive disruption process versus focusing solely on objective sport outcome.
Graham Jones and Sheldon Hanton
Using Jones’s (1995) control model of debilitative and facilitative competitive anxiety, competitive swimmers (N = 91) were assessed on the intensity and direction of their cognitive anxiety and somatic anxiety responses one hour before an important race, and they completed scales examining outcome, performance, and process goals. It was hypothesized that there would be no difference in intensity of cognitive and somatic anxiety but that swimmers with positive expectancies of goal attainment would report their symptoms as being more facilitative. Forty-five swimmers who had set all three types of goal were divided into positive and negative/uncertain goal attainment expectancy groups for analysis. MANOVA supported the hypothesis in the case of cognitive anxiety and provided partial support in the case of somatic anxiety across all three goal types. Cognitive and somatic anxiety direction scores were the largest contributors to the significant multivariate effects. Eta-squared calculations showed that the predictions of Jones’s model were best supported in the case of performance goals.
Kamuran Yerlikaya Balyan, Serdar Tok, Arkun Tatar, Erdal Binboga, and Melih Balyan
The present study examined the association between personality, competitive anxiety, somatic anxiety and physiological arousal in athletes with high and low anxiety levels. Anxiety was manipulated by means of an incentive. Fifty male participants, first, completed the Five Factor Personality Inventory and their resting electro dermal activity (EDA) was recorded. In the second stage, participants were randomly assigned to high or low anxiety groups. Individual EDAs were recorded again to determine precompetition physiological arousal. Participants also completed the Competitive State Anxiety Inventory-2 (CSAI-2) and played a computer-simulated soccer match. Results showed that neuroticism was related to both CSAI-2 components and physiological arousal only in the group receiving the incentive. Winners had higher levels of cognitive anxiety and lower levels of physiological arousal than losers. On the basis of these findings, we concluded that an athlete’s neurotic personality may influence his cognitive and physiological responses in a competition.
Stuart Beattie, Lew Hardy, and Tim Woodman
Higgins’ (1987) self-discrepancy theory holds that certain emotions occur as a result of discrepancies between pairs of psychological entities called self-guides. The present study explored self-discrepancies in self-confidence in relation to performance and cognitive anxiety. Slalom canoeists (n = 81) reported ideal, ought, and feared levels of self-confidence 3 hours before a national ranking slalom tournament. Within a half-hour of the start of the race, canoeists reported their actual self-confidence and cognitive anxiety levels. Hierarchical multiple-regression analyses revealed that self-discrepancies predicted significantly more performance variance than actual self-confidence alone. Additionally, hierarchical multiple-regression analyses revealed that, contrary to the specific predictions of self-discrepancy theory, ideal and feared discrepancies (not “ought” and “feared” discrepancies) significantly predicted cognitive anxiety. Additional findings, implications, and directions for further research into the nature of the self in sport are discussed.
Lew Hardy, Tim Woodman, and Stephen Carrington
This paper examines Hardy’s (1990, 1996a) proposition that self-confidence might act as the bias factor in a butterfly catastrophe model of stress and performance. Male golfers (N = 8) participated in a golf tournament and reported their cognitive anxiety, somatic anxiety, and self-confidence prior to their tee shot on each hole. All anxiety, self-confidence, and performance scores were standardized within participants in order to control for individual differences. The data were then collapsed across participants and categorized into a high self-confidence condition and a low self-confidence condition by means of a median split. A series of two-way (Cognitive Anxiety × Somatic Anxiety) ANOVAs was conducted on each self-confidence condition in order to fag where the maximum Cognitive Anxiety × Somatic Anxiety interaction effect size lay along the somatic anxiety axis. These ANOVAs revealed that the maximum interaction effect size between cognitive and somatic anxiety was at a higher level of somatic anxiety for the high self-confidence condition than for the low self-confidence condition, thus supporting the moderating role of self-confidence in a catastrophe model framework.
Marcus Börjesson, Carolina Lundqvist, Henrik Gustafsson, and Paul Davis
). Total scores range from 9 to 36 on each subscale. Previous studies have reported alpha-values between .80-.89 for the cognitive anxiety scale and .72-.89 for the somatic anxiety scale ( Jones & Hanton, 2001 ; Jones & Uphill, 2004 ). Study Design and Procedure The present study employed an experimental
Philip Wilson and Robert C. Eklund
The purpose of this investigation was to examine Leary’s (1992) contention that competitive anxiety revolves around the self-presentational implications of sport competition. Intercollegiate athletes (N = 199) completed inventories assessing competitive trait anxiety and self-presentational concerns. Principal-axis factor analysis with direct oblim rotation of self-presentational concern items produced an interpretable four-factor solution accounting for 62% of the variance. These factors were interpreted to represent self-presentational concerns about Performance/Composure Inadequacies, Appearing Fatigued/Lacking Energy, Physical Appearance, and Appearing Athletically Untalented. Correlational and structural equation modeling analyses revealed that self-presentational concern was more strongly associated with cognitive rather than somatic anxiety, and that substantial portions of variance in competitive anxiety could be accounted for by self-presentational concern variables. The results of this investigation provide support for Leary’s (1992) assertion regarding the relationship between self-presentational concern and competitive anxiety.
Tim Woodman, John G. Albinson, and Lew Hardy
Hanin’s (1980) zones of optimal functioning (ZOF) hypothesis suggests that a person is most likely to attain peak performance within an individual, specific bandwidth of state anxiety. The present study investigated Hanin’s ZOF hypothesis within a multidimensional framework, whereby zones of optimal functioning were computed for cognitive and somatic anxiety. Participants (N = 25) were members of a competitive bowling league; they completed the CSAI- 2 prior to each league match over a period of 20 weeks. Performance was operationalized as each participant’s score in the first game of each match, and these scores were standardized within subjects. The analysis revealed a significant main effect for somatic anxiety zone level and a significant interaction between cognitive and somatic anxiety zone levels (below, in, and above zone) and subsequent performance. Results are discussed in terms of the theoretical implications for future researchers, specifically in relation to the cusp catastrophe model.
Aodhagán Conlon, Rachel Arnold, Ezio Preatoni, and Lee J. Moore
task instructions (both before and after the breathing interventions or control task). State Anxiety State anxiety was assessed via the immediate anxiety measurement scale ( Thomas et al., 2002 ). This scale provided definitions of cognitive anxiety and somatic anxiety before assessing these constructs