THE USE OF IMAGERY BY HIGH AND LOW ABILITY GOLFERS: A QUALITATIVE STUDY
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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In the last three decades, despite the extensive body of literature that has focussed on the use of imagery in a sport setting, very little research has explored the differences in imagery use between high and low ability athletes. The purpose of this study was to address this oversight by exploring imagery use by high and low ability golfers. A qualitative approach was employed using an interview guide to gain a more fine-grained understanding of participants’ experiences. Participants were 8 amateur golfers (4 = high ability and 4 = low ability). Inductive content analysis of the data suggested that high ability golfers used CS and MG-M imagery to the same level as their lower ability counterparts. MG-A and MS imagery was employed more by the high skilled participants and CG imagery more by the low skilled golfers. In terms of imagery outcome, high ability golfers conveyed greater positive outcomes than their low ability counterparts. There were also differences in imagery use for specific shots. The findings have implications for the use of imagery across a variety of performance contexts.
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