Anxiety, Attentional Control, and Performance Impairment in Penalty Kicks

in Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology
View More View Less
  • 1 University of Exeter
Restricted access

Purchase article

USD  $24.95

Student 1 year online subscription

USD  $85.00

1 year online subscription

USD  $114.00

Student 2 year online subscription

USD  $162.00

2 year online subscription

USD  $216.00

The current study sought to test the predictions of attentional control theory (ACT) in a sporting environment. Fourteen experienced footballers took penalty kicks under low- and high-threat counterbalanced conditions while wearing a gaze registration system. Fixations to target locations (goalkeeper and goal area) were determined using frame-by-frame analysis. When anxious, footballers made faster first fixations and fixated for significantly longer toward the goalkeeper. This disruption in gaze behavior brought about significant reductions in shooting accuracy, with shots becoming significantly centralized and within the goalkeeper’s reach. These findings support the predictions of ACT, as anxious participants were more likely to focus on the “threatening” goalkeeper, owing to an increased influence of the stimulus-driven attentional control system.

The authors are with the School of Sport and Health Sciences, University of Exeter, St. Luke’s Campus, Exeter, U.K.

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 2894 1713 94
Full Text Views 287 127 4
PDF Downloads 352 139 3