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Behavioral Sport Psychology

Description of the Strategy

Sport psychology's early years (1900–1960) were primarily concept or cognitive psychology oriented. The conceptual approach focused on discrete topics or the orientations of particular individuals and mainly explained phenomena in terms of theoretical constructs. Little, if any, information was devoted to describing practical procedures for coaches and athletes to follow to alter sport behavior/performance. Cognitive sport psychology was bent more on explanation and description than prescription. To a certain extent, it mirrored the thrust of motor learning, the mainstay of “psychology” in physical activity and education courses of study during that period. Explaining why behavior occurred was more popular than verifying how behavior occurred.

In the early 1960s, and particularly at the Rome Olympic Games, European nations were the ...

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