COMPETITIVE AND NON-COMPETITIVE COPING STRATEGIES IN PERFORMANCE: HOW DIFFERENTENVIRONMENTS AFFECT COPING STRATEGIESAMONG NON-ELITE FOOTBALLERS
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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This study examined how effectively non-elite footballers cope with stressful encounters in competitive and non-competitive environments. A sample of two male footballers from Cardiff Metropolitan University were used to represent non-elite performers that trained/competed regularly. Semi-structured interviews were conducted to gain in-depth information about how the participants coped with critical incidents in both competitive and non-competitive environments. Interviews were then transcribed and analysed using inductive and deductive analysis. The responses were categorised into three broad coping functions: problem-focused coping, emotion-focused coping and avoidance coping. Problem-focused coping strategies emerged as the most cited strategy in both environments, with avoidance coping being cited the least in both environments. The most cited strategies in noncompetitive situations were 'express the self' and 'accepted mistake', whereas the most cited in competitive situations were 'increased effort' and 'positive appraisal' however the frequency of strategies employed in each environment did not differ significantly. Effectiveness of coping was identified by the participants for each critical incident discussed, and the coping strategies used for each incident were then cited to have aided effective/ineffective coping. Participants in the study stated that more emphasis was placed on coping in competitive situations, and as a result coping was more effective in this environment. Future research should examine a larger sample including a wider range of sports to formulate a hypothesis that can be generalised to a wider population.
DEGREE OF BACHELOR SCIENCE (HONOURS) SPORT AND PHYSICAL EDUCATION
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