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Self-Talk

KIN 247: What you say to yourself can influence your sport performance
by

Sean Mullen

on 12 April 2016

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Transcript of Self-Talk

Thought stoppage
- consciously recognize negative thought (trigger - i.e., snap fingers)
Reframing
– changing the perspective; e.g., provide context, or changing negative self-talk to positive or instructional self-talk
Countering assumptions
- necessary when athlete still believes the negative thought. Uses facts and reasons to counter negative thought
Others?
Psychological Strategies
Perfectionism

“I must do this perfectly”

Catastrophizing
“It’s over if I lose”

Self-worth Validation
“I’m nothing if I can’t even do this well”

Personalization
“If I had made that play, we wouldn’t have lost”

Blaming
“If it wasn’t windy, rainy…”

One-trial generalizations
“I never play well at night”
Irrational & distorted self-talk
How does self-talk influence behavior?




First step in changing self-talk =
self-awareness
(introspection, observation, keeping logs)

kinesthetics/skill acquisition (
"smooth" "remember"
)
breaking bad habits (
“follow through”
)
initiate action (
“explode”
)
arousal regulation (
“easy” "let's go"
)
effort regulation (
“keep going” "give it all" "save some"
)
build confidence (
“I can do it"
)

& Cognitive Re-Framing Negative Thoughts
event
self-talk
(rational, irrational)
outcomes
(emotional, behavioral)
The Where & When of Self-Talk
Where?
When?
The What of Self-Talk
Structure
Task Instruction
cues, phrases, sentences
technique, encouragement, mood elevation
The Why of Self-Talk
Hardy et al. 2001
Building & developing self-efficacy
Skill acquisition
Creating & changing mood
Controlling effort
Focusing attention or concentration
Hardy et al. 2001; Zinsser et al. 2006
Hardy et al. 2001
Sport-Specific Examples
Arousal regulation
(Meyers et al., 1996)
d = 0.73 – 1.23

Imagery
(Hinshaw, 1991; Meyers et al., 1996)
d = 0.57 – 0.68

Self-Talk


(Hatzigeorgiadis et al., 2011)
d = 0.48

Goal setting
(Kyllo & Landers, 1995)
d = 0.34
Comparisons of Mental Training Effects on Sport Performance
“We don’t need anymore techniques in sport psychology. We need athletes to use the techniques we already have.” - Bob Rotella (Singer & Rotella, 1996).
Take-homes
Self-talk has 2 main functions: motivation & instruction
Match your inner thoughts with what you're doing (fine or gross motor skill?)
"Write your own highlights nightly"
-Dan Gould
"overt or covert personal dialogue in which the athlete interprets feelings, perceptions, and convictions and gives himself instructions and reinforcement."
(Hardy, Gammage, & Hall, 2001)
Self-Talk and Sports Performance: A Meta-Analysis
Method:
32 studies
only self-talk (no combination interventions)
Hatzigeorgiadis et al (2011)
Research Questions:
What is the overall effect of self-talk on sport performance?
Does matching self-talk to type of skill matter?
Well-learned or novel tasks?
Will beginners benefit more than experienced athletes?
Does self-selection of cues matter?
Does "overtness" matter?
Is training/guided practice beneficial?

Characteristics of Self-Talk
Overtness
Valence
Self-Determined?
Functions
Frequency
Definition
Results...
1.
Type of talk
= No differences b/t instructional and motivational self-talk on performance (d=.55 vs .37; not statistically different).
2. Matching hypothesis supported:
instructional more effective for fine tasks than for gross motor tasks; instructional > motivational for fine motor
3
. Task novelty
= slightly better than well-learned tasks (d=.73 vs .41).
4. Experience level =
no differences
5. Training
= significant predictor (d=.80 vs .37)
6.
Assigned vs. free-choice
= no difference
7
. Overtness
= no difference
Full transcript