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Urban Johnson and Mark Andersen

Education and training are foundations of professional practice in sport and exercise psychology (SEP), and, like many other applied and academic disciplines, SEP is undergoing a gradual advancement in terms of theoretical, methodological, and practical development. In a period with new social

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Richard Fletcher

Measurement has a high profile in sport and exercise psychology research and provides the basis for examining and developing theory. The current state of sport and exercise psychology is one of complex models and theories, and sophisticated measurement methods are required to fully understand and develop these. This paper promotes a current and powerful measurement approach, item response theory, and demonstrates how it can be applied to sport and exercise psychological constructs to enhance the quality of instrument development and strengthen construct validity.

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Andreas Stenling, Andreas Ivarsson, Urban Johnson and Magnus Lindwall

Bayesian statistics is on the rise in mainstream psychology, but applications in sport and exercise psychology research are scarce. In this article, the foundations of Bayesian analysis are introduced, and we will illustrate how to apply Bayesian structural equation modeling in a sport and exercise psychology setting. More specifically, we contrasted a confirmatory factor analysis on the Sport Motivation Scale II estimated with the most commonly used estimator, maximum likelihood, and a Bayesian approach with weakly informative priors for cross-loadings and correlated residuals. The results indicated that the model with Bayesian estimation and weakly informative priors provided a good fit to the data, whereas the model estimated with a maximum likelihood estimator did not produce a well-fitting model. The reasons for this discrepancy between maximum likelihood and Bayesian estimation are discussed as well as potential advantages and caveats with the Bayesian approach.

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Vikki Krane and Diane E. Whaley

To read the written history of U.S. sport and exercise psychology, one easily could assume that women were absent from the field. Yet, indisputably women have assumed influential leadership roles through their research, leadership in professional organizations, editing major journals, and mentoring graduate students and novice professionals. Based on life history interviews, grounded in standpoint and feminist cultural studies perspectives, we present the collective contributions of 8 women who greatly affected the development of the field of sport and exercise psychology in the U.S. Although traveling different paths and having varied strengths and weaknesses, certain attributes distinguished their journeys; most notably, they were driven, selfless, dignified, humble, competent, and passionate about developing the field. Their legacy includes generations of students who have carved their own careers in sport and exercise psychology; lines of research that have established the field as rigorous, theory-based, practical, and relevant; and caring and competent leadership in our professional organizations.

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Peter R.E. Crocker

This paper discusses the benefits of using theory-driven research in sport and exercise psychology using individuals with physical disabilities. The cognitively oriented theories of transactional stress and emotion (Lazarus & Folkman, 1984), attributional theory (Weiner, 1985), and theory of planned behavior (Ajzen, 1985) are outlined. Relevant research with individuals with physical disabilities is examined. The paper addresses how integrating these three theories with research with this population can stimulate research ideas, improve the generality of theories used in sport and exercise psychology, and provide meaningful knowledge about their experiences.

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Jay C. Kimiecik and Amy T. Harris

It has been suggested that enjoyment is a key construct for understanding and explaining the motivation and experiences of sport and exercise participants (Scanlan & Simons, 1992; Wankel, 1993). In this paper, definitions of enjoyment used by sport and exercise psychology researchers are reviewed, and the conceptual and measurement implications for the study of sport and exercise experiences are discussed. In many studies investigating enjoyment, researchers have not adequately defined the construct. Also, there are possible limitations with proposed definitions of enjoyment (e.g., Scanlan & Simons, 1992; Wankel, 1993). One possible way of addressing these limitations is to conceptualize and define enjoyment as flow (Csikszentmihalyi, 1993). To support this enjoyment-equals-flow contention, enjoyment/flow is compared with other related constructs: affect, attitude, pleasure, and intrinsic motivation. Implications of the suggested definition of enjoyment as flow for past and present enjoyment research in sport and exercise psychology are discussed.

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Jay C. Kimiecik and Amy T. Harris

It has been suggested that enjoyment is a key construct for understanding and explaining the motivation and experiences of sport and exercise participants (Scanlan & Simons, 1992; Wankel, 1993). In this paper, definitions of enjoyment used by sport and exercise psychology researchers are reviewed, and the conceptual and measurement implications for the study of sport and exercise experiences are discussed. In many studies investigating enjoyment, researchers have not adequately defined the construct. Also, there are possible limitations with proposed definitions of enjoyment (e.g., Scanlan & Simons, 1992; Wankel, 1993). One possible way of addressing these limitations is to conceptualize and define enjoyment as flow (Csikszentmihalyi, 1993). To support this enjoyment-equals-flow contention, enjoyment/flow is compared with other related constructs: affect, attitude, pleasure, and intrinsic motivation. Implications of the suggested definition of enjoyment as flow for past and present enjoyment research in sport and exercise psychology are discussed.

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Nilam Ram, Joanna Starek and Jay Johnson

The impact of race, ethnicity, and sexual orientation on human cognition, affect, and behavior has been well documented in the psychology, sociology, and counseling literature. Sport and exercise psychology, however, has minimized the importance of these variables (Duda & Allison, 1990). The purpose of the current study was to determine how race, ethnicity, and sexual orientation have been addressed in the recent sport and exercise psychology literature. Duda and Allison’s previous research was replicated and extended by analyzing the content of 982 manuscripts published in JSEP, JASP, and TSP between 1987 and 2000. Overall, 19.86% of manuscripts included references to race/ethnicity and 1.22% included references to sexual orientation. Detailed results demonstrate that, despite an increase in the number of papers that include references to race and ethnicity, there has been no systematic attempt to include the experience of marginalized groups in the literature. Researchers and practitioners are encouraged to incorporate appropriate questions, reporting, and sensitivity with regard to race, ethnicity, and sexual orientation into their work.

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Diane E. Whaley

Feminist methodologies are as varied as the individuals who conduct research using a feminist perspective. This article highlights some of the issues pertinent to feminist analyses in sport and exercise psychology. The underlying frameworks feminists employ (methodologies and epistemologies), as well as methodological questions important to feminist researchers, are discussed. Specific epistemologies evident in psychology and sport psychology are reviewed, and underused methods applicable to the sport and exercise context are offered as alternatives to existing methods. Finally, complexities and current tensions evident in feminist methodologies are discussed, and the particular issue of employing quantitative methods from a feminist perspective is debated. Particular attention is paid throughout the article to issues not only of gender but of age, ethnicity, race, and other differences.

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Christy Greenleaf and Karen Collins

This paper presents our experiences, thoughts, and struggles in working toward understanding, embracing, and implementing feminist perspectives in our scholarship and practice. Mentors, through their encouragement, guidance, and support, have played key roles in our growth as feminist sport and exercise psychology professionals. It is through our work with mentors that we have moved closer toward understanding and identifying with being feminist scholars. In our research, we place women as the central focus of our work, take into account contextual factors, and look toward creating social change. The struggles we have faced as young professionals include countering stereotypes of feminism, integrating feminist methodologies and epistemology into a traditionally logical positivist field, and moving from research findings to creating social change. Looking toward the future, we hope that feminist sport and exercise psychology scholars continue to build a community to share and discuss the issues and struggles of feminist researchers.