Sources of sport confidence and the influence of goal setting on confidence in elite female cricketers.
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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The purpose of this study was to qualitatively identify sources of sport confidence and the influence of goal setting upon confidence in elite female cricketers. The cricketers were part of the top two tiers in the England Women’s Development pathway and semi-structured interviews were used to gain an insight into these performers’ sources of sport confidence, the types of goals set and the effects of achievement or failure of such goals. Ten sources of confidence were identified, although three sources were most salient; past experiences, coach support and environmental comfort. Additionally, six different types of goals were set and used by performers including process, performance, outcome, development, selection and team goals. Achievement of such goals in a competitive environment increased performers’ confidence and performance levels, whereas failure to achieve goals knocked confidence and negatively impacted performance. Strategies to overcome failure were used; the majority of performers reverted back to sources of sport confidence earlier identified. Previous sport confidence literature was drawn upon when discussing findings and highlighting practical implications for players, coaches and sport psychologists.
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