In this article we reviewed a series of studies (n = 18) on psychological preparation of the goalkeeper (GK) for the 11-m penalty kick in soccer. The main findings of this review were that deception strategies (e.g., standing slightly off-center) can increase the chances of the kick being directed to a desired direction, and that individual differences among GKs should be considered when planning sport psychology programs for GKs. A number of research limitations and methodological concerns, such as the lack of ecological validity of the tasks performed in the studies and the lack of studies on psychological interventions, were discussed. In addition, a number of practical implications for sport psychology consultants who work with GKs in soccer were suggested.
Ronnie Lidor, Gal Ziv and Tamar Gershon
Martina Navarro, Nelson Miyamoto, John van der Kamp, Edgard Morya, Ronald Ranvaud and Geert J.P. Savelsbergh
We investigated the effects of high pressure on the point of no return or the minimum time required for a kicker to respond to the goalkeeper’s dive in a simulated penalty kick task. The goalkeeper moved to one side with different times available for the participants to direct the ball to the opposite side in low-pressure (acoustically isolated laboratory) and high-pressure situations (with a participative audience). One group of participants showed a significant lengthening of the point of no return under high pressure. With less time available, performance was at chance level. Unexpectedly, in a second group of participants, high pressure caused a qualitative change in which for short times available participants were inclined to aim in the direction of the goalkeeper’s move. The distinct effects of high pressure are discussed within attentional control theory to reflect a decreasing efficiency of the goal-driven attentional system, slowing down performance, and a decreasing effectiveness in inhibiting stimulus-driven behavior.
Matt Dicks, Chris Pocock, Richard Thelwell and John van der Kamp
John van der Kamp
This study investigated whether soccer penalty-takers can exploit predictive information from the goalkeeper’s actions. Eight low- and seven high-skilled participants kicked balls in a penalty task with the goalkeeper’s action displayed on a large screen. The goalkeeper initiated his dive either before, at or after the ball was struck. The percentage of balls shot to the empty half of the goal was not above chance when the participants could only rely on predictive information. Gaze patterns suggested that the need to fixate the target location to maintain aiming accuracy hindered perceptual anticipation. It is argued that penalty-takers should select a target location in advance of the run-up to the ball and disregard the goalkeeper’s actions.
Andrew G. Wood, Jamie B. Barker, Martin Turner and Peter Thomson
diastolic blood pressure [DBP]) provides an objective insight into an athlete’s physiological state (adaptive or maladaptive) when encountering an activating event. Considering the promise, there is a dearth of REBT research exploring the use of physiological markers. In line with REBT theory, a penalty-kick
Joe Causer and A. Mark Williams
A number of novel manipulations to the design of playing uniforms were used to try to disguise the actions of penalty takers in soccer. Skilled and less-skilled soccer goalkeepers were required to anticipate penalty kick outcome while their opponent wore one of three different uniform designs that were intended to disguise the availability of potentially key information from the hip region. Variations of shapes/patterns were designed to conceal the actual alignment of the hips. Three occlusion points were used in the test film: −160 ms, −80 ms before, and at foot–ball contact. Skilled individuals reported higher accuracy scores than their less-skilled counterparts (p < .05). There were no performance decrements for the less-skilled group across the different uniform conditions (p > .05); however, the skilled group decreased their accuracy on the experimental conditions compared with the control (p < .05). Findings highlight the potential benefits of designing playing uniforms that facilitate disguise in sport.
Bruce D. Hale and Adam Whitehouse
This study attempted to manipulate an athlete’s facilitative or debilitative appraisal (direction; Jones, 1995) of competitive anxiety through imagery-based interventions in order to study the effects on subsequent anxiety intensity (heart rate and CSAI-2) and direction (CSAI-2D; Jones & Swain, 1992). In a within-subjects’ design, 24 experienced soccer players were relaxed via progressive relaxation audiotape and then randomly underwent an imagery-based video- and audiotaped manipulation of their appraisal of taking a hypothetical gamewinning penalty kick under either a “pressure” or “challenge” appraisal emphasis. There was no significant effect for heart rate. A repeated measures MANOVA for CSAI-2 and CSAI-2D scores revealed that for both intensity and direction scores the challenge condition produced less cognitive anxiety, less somatic anxiety, and more self-confidence (all p < .001) than the pressure situation. This finding suggests that a challenge appraisal manipulation taught by applied sport psychologists might benefit athletes’ performance.
Rafael A.B. Tedesqui and Terry Orlick
The purpose of this study was to qualitatively explore the attentional focus experienced by elite soccer players in different soccer positions and performance tasks of both closed and open skills. No previous studies have explored elite soccer players’ attentional skills from a naturalistic and qualitative perspective in such detail. Data collection consisted of individual semistructured interviews with eight highly elite Brazilian soccer players from five main soccer positions, namely goalkeeper, defender, wing, midfielder, and forward. Important themes were positive thinking, performing on autopilot, and relying on peripheral vision. For example, thematic analysis indicated that in tasks where there may be an advantage in disguising one’s intentions (e.g., penalty kick), relying on peripheral vision was essential. Early mistakes were among the main sources of distractions; thus, players reported beginning with easy plays as a strategy to prevent distractions. Implications for applied sport psychology were drawn and future studies recommended.
Philip Furley, Matt Dicks and Daniel Memmert
In the present article, we investigate the effects of specific nonverbal behaviors signaling dominance and submissiveness on impression formation and outcome expectation in the soccer penalty kick situation. In Experiment 1, results indicated that penalty takers with dominant body language are perceived more positively by soccer goalkeepers and players and are expected to perform better than players with a submissive body language. This effect was similar for both video and point-light displays. Moreover, in contrast to previous studies, we found no effect of clothing (red vs. white) in the video condition. In Experiment 2, we used the implicit association test to demonstrate that dominant body language is implicitly associated with a positive soccer player schema whereas submissive body language is implicitly associated with a negative soccer player schema. The implications of our findings are discussed with reference to future implications for theory and research in the study of person perception in sport.
Greg Wood, Samuel J. Vine, Johnny Parr and Mark R. Wilson
and the type of information that can be used during QE durations to guide accurate aiming. One sporting task where deceptive eye movements have been recently shown to be prevalent is the soccer penalty kick. Early research ( Kuhn, 1988 ) identified two aiming strategies: keeper dependent (KD), where