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Personality in Sport

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Daniel Mitchell

on 10 February 2017

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Transcript of Personality in Sport

Personality in Sport
Lesson Outcomes
Define personality and its structure.
Explore and critically analyse different personality theories.
Identify methods of measuring personality.
Apply personality theories to athletes.
The sum of characteristics that makes a person unique (Weinberg & Gould, 2015).
All the consistent ways in which the behavior of one person differs from that of others, especially in social situations (Kalat, 1999).
Bandura, A. (1977) Social Learning Theory. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, Prentice-Hill.

Cattell, R. B. (1965)
The scientific analysis of personality.
Baltimore, Penguin Books.

Eysenck, H. J. (1960)
The structure of human personality.
London, Methuen.

Freud, S. (1933)
New introductory lectures on psychoanalysis.
New York, Norton.

Kalat, J. W. (1999)
Introduction to psychology.
Pacific Grove, Brooks/Cole Wadsworth.

Martens, R. (1975)
Social psychology and physical activity
. New York: Harper & Row.

Macnamara, A. Button, A & Collins, D. (2010). The role of psychological characteristics in facilitating the pathway to elite performance.
The Sport Psychologist, 24
, 52-73.

Maslow, A. H. (1943) A Theory of Human Motivation.
Psychological Review,
50, 370-96.

Pavlov, I. P. (1897/1902)
The work of the digestive glands.
London: Griffin

Rogers, C. (1951) Client-centered therapy: Its current practice, implications and theory. London, Constable.

Skinner, B. F. (1953).
Science and human behaviour
. New York, Macmillian.

Weinberg, R. & Gould, D. (2015)
Foundations of Sport and Exercise Psychology.
6th Ed. Champaign, Human Kinetics.
Psychological Core
Basic level of personality.
Deepest components that hold core attitudes, values and beliefs.
Most stable part of personality.
Beliefs about yourself and self-worth.
The real you!
Typical Responses
Role-related behaviour
Personality Structure (Martens, 1975).
Ways we learn to adjust to our environment.
How we respond to the world around us.
Good indicators of psychological core.
How you act based on your social situation.
Most changeable aspect of personality.
Behaviour changes as your perceptions of environment change.
Different situations often require playing different roles.
Understanding personality structure
Stable Core
Role-related behaviours
Typical Responses (TRADE OFF)
Coaches can be more effective if we get to know the person!
I take my personality onto the field when I play.
Personality Theories
Psychodynamic Theory (Freud, 1933).
"Dynamic set of processes that are constantly changing" (Vealey, 2002).
Instinctive drives.
Represents the unconscious core.
Seeks pleasure
Conscious, logical and reality-orientated.
Moral conscience of the individual.
Individual's personality is determined through the dynamic conflict between seek to release and inhibition.
Does not account for the social environment.
Trait Theory (Eysenck, 1960, 1968)
Traits are stable and enduring.
Consistent across a variety of situations.
Effect of situation and environment is minimal.
Individuals are likely to behave a certain way regardless of the situation.
Knowing an individual's traits does not always indicate how they will behave!
Also does not consider the affect that different situations may have on individual behaviour.
Social Learning Theory (Bandura, 1977).
Behaviour is largely shaped by the situation or environment.
Use of observational learning (modelling) and social reinforcement (feedback).
Classical Conditioning (Pavlov, 1902) and Operant Conditioning (Skinner, 1953).
The environment influences the way individuals behave.
Individuals can act differently in different scenarios.
Situations can change behaviour for some, but not for others.
Interactional Theory (Hollander, 1971)
Considers both the situation and the person when determining behaviour.
Closely links with Personality structure (Martens, 1975).
Interaction between personality traits and situation is an indicator of the resulting behaviour.
Favoured theory among contemporary sport psychologists (Weinberg & Gould, 2015).
Personality only accounts for a small portion of behaviour.
Other factors such as physical or motor ability can influence behaviour.
Humanistic Theory (Maslow, 1943; Rogers, 1951)
Game is tied at extra time, 2-2 after conceding two late goals. I need 4 players for a penalty shootout.
The way individuals perceive and interpret the world.
Humans possess an innate drive to enhance themselves to become self-fulfilled.
A basic human need (Maslow, 1943).
Perspective is shaped by learned expectations.
Not necessarily the experience that shapes the individual but the perception of the experience itself.
An ongoing process of self-actualisation.
Naive and romantic.
Lack of emphasis on inherited characteristics.
Describes personality but does not explain it.
Psychodynamic Theory
(Freud, 1933)
Trait Theory
(Eysenck, 1960;1968)
Interactional Theory
(Hollander, 1971)
Humanistic Theory
(Maslow, 1943; Rogers, 1951)
Social Learning Theory
(Bandura, 1977)
Internally determined
Environmentally determined
Nature vs Nuture
Choose one of the following to debate:
Extroverts perform better in team sports and introverts in individual sports.

Coaches can always shape athlete behaviour, providing they are participating in a session/practice.

Successful athletes at the top of their sport possess natural characteristics to deal with high pressure scenarios.

Individuals can change their personality and behaviours over time.

I act differently when playing sport compared to my day-to-day behaviour.
Which statement do you agree with?
Gary Speed
"He always had a smile on his face, he played with a smile on his face" Joe Royle (Former Everton Manager)
"A magnificent person bright fun, and a family man...he lit up every room he walked into" Alan Shearer (Former Newcastle teammate)
"A great professional, a great character... you couldn't ask for anyone better to work with" Phil Brown (Coached Speed at Bolton)
Even though psychological traits can predispose someone to behave in a certain way, the behaviour does not necessarily occur in any given situation (Weinberg & Gould, 2015).
Consider how this may influence your behaviour as a coach!
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