An Analysis on Sports Psychology

Document details
Category: Sports and Recreation Essay
Subcategory: Professional Sports
Words: 1345
Pages: 3

Sport psychology, according to the AAASP (Association for the Advancement of Applied Sport Psychology), is the study of psychological and mental factors that influence and are influenced by participation and performance in sport, exercise, and physical activity. Furthermore, it is the application of the knowledge gained through this study to everyday settings. A sport psychologist is interested in how participation in sport, exercise, and physical activity may enhance development and well being throughout the life span. There are three things that sport psychologists engage in research, education, and application. In regard to research, they may attempt to find answers to an infinite number of questions through theoretical or empirical, basic or applied, and laboratory or field research. As far as education is concerned, the sport psychologists teach students about the field in traditional university classroom settings, inform coaches, officials, and administrators about various sport-related issues, and they also explain to top-level athletes and exercise participants about what sport psychology has to offer them. Finally, with regard to application function, they may use psychometric instruments for purposes such as assessment of the relationship between personality and performance. Another aspect may be to improve performance through biofeedback, meditation, progressive relaxation, and visual imagery. The history of sport psychology dates back to 1898 when Norman Triplett, a psychologist at Indiana University, published what many regard as the first sport psychology experiment. He focused on the factors that affect the pace of cyclists. He found that cyclists performed better when competing against each other than riding alone, and even better when riding in tandem. He also originated that thought that an audience facilitates performance through the release of energy and incentive to increase effort. Another big contributor in the history of sport psychology was a University of Illinois psychologist, Coleman Roberts Griffith. As early as 1900, he taught the introductory course in his discipline and became interested in what motivated the athletes in his classes. He developed the...

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