Archive for Vol. 1, 2010

An Examination of Goal Orientation, Sense of Coherence, and Motivational Climate as Predictors of Perceived Physical Competence

by Juha Kokkonen, Marja KokkonenJarmo Liukkonen & Anthony Watt

Vol. 1 2010, pages 133–152
Published December 15, 2010


The purpose of the present study was to investigate the extent to which children’s goal orientation, sense of coherence (SOC), and perceptions of the motivational climate in PE accounted for their perceived physical competence. The variable measures were con- ducted with the participants (382 boys, 389 girls), aged 15-16, who completed a set of self-reported questionnaires. The hierarchical multiple-regression results showed that all steps lead to a significant change in the models and accounted for 20.2% of the variance in perceived physical competence. More specifically, the inclusion of task and ego ori- entation resulted in an additional 11.4% of explained variance and the inclusion of SOC lead to an additional 6.5% of explained variance. The SOC variable was also the strongest predictor of perceived physical competence (X = .26). The correlation found between the task and ego-involving motivational climate scales for girls was strong (b >.04) and negative. A strong positive correlation was found between task involving motivational climate and task orientation for the boys. All other correlations for the motivational vari- ables were moderate or weak. T-tests revealed that boys scored significantly higher for all variables except ego-involving motivational climate and task orientation.

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About the Author(s)

JUHA KOKKONEN, Department of Teacher Education, University of Jyväskylä, Finland.

MARJA KOKKONEN, Department of Sport Sciences, University of Jyväskylä, Finland.

JARMO LIUKKONEN, Department of Sport Sciences, University of Jyväskylä, Finland.

ANTHONY WATT, School of Education and Centre for Aging, Rehabilitation, Exercise and Sport, Victoria University, Australia.

Managing Teams: Comparing Organizational and Sport Psychological Approaches to Teamwork

by Dean Barker, Anthony Rossi & Uwe Pühse

Vol. 1 2010, pages 115–132
Published November 3, 2010


This paper examines how teams and teamwork research have been conceptualised in the fields of sport psychology and organizational psychology. Specifically, it provides a close inspection of the general theoretical assumptions that inhere in the two disciplines. The results of a discursive analysis of research literature suggest that the fields have significantly different ways of conceptualising teams and teamwork and that conceptual borrowing may prove fruitful. A key argument is however, that in order for meaningful cross-fertilisation to take place a sound understanding of these differences is necessary. Working from this premise, the essential differences between sport and organizational approaches to teams are outlined. The paper is concluded with a discussion of contributions that organizational psychology can make to understandings of sport-oriented teams.

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About the Authors

DEAN BARKER is a postdoc researcher at the Institute of Exercise and Health Sciences, University of Basel.

ANTHONY ROSSI is Senior Lecturer in Sports Coaching and Health and Physical Education at the School of Human Movement Studies, University of Queensland.

UWE PÜHSE is Professor and Director of Social Sciences and Sport Pedagogy at the Institute of Exercise and Health Sciences, University of Basel.

Consuming Football: The Norwegian Experience, the English Impact, and the Possibilities of Interdisciplinary Research

by Ingar Mehus & Guy Osborn

Vol. 1 2010, pages 89–113
Published October 13, 2010


The article adopts as its point of departure an interdisciplinary approach to sports study, and celebrates the cross-pollination of disciplines. Specifically, it argues that the transformation of English football has served as a model for the modernization of football in Norway. Football is a global sport, and regulation of football and its spectators in other countries are thus of interest when aiming to understand the commitment and consumption patterns of football spectators in Norway. The empirical study surveys spectators (N=394) at two home matches of Rosenborg Ballklubb and investigates the relationship between motives for attending, team identification and direct and indirect consumption. A statistical model was developed, explaining 20 percent of the variance in attendance. The sample containing mostly women and families score higher on social motives and consume less football, both direct and indirect. However, there is little separating the two samples when it comes to team identification and the importance of excitement motives. The stability in motivational pattern, together with the high exchange rate of spectators between matches shows that it is difficult to separate fans from non-fans. It is concluded that viewing the phenomenon of football attendance from different disciplinary perspectives provide a more rounded understanding.

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About the Author(s)

INGAR MEHUS is affiliated with the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Dept. of Sociology and Political Science.

GUY OSBORN is Professor of Law, University of Westminster, School of Law, and affiliated with the Norwegian University of Science and Technology.

The Role of Gender, Enjoyment, Perceived Physical Activity Competence, and Fundamental Movement Skills as Correlates of the Physical Activity Engagement of Finnish Physical Education Students

by Sami Kalaja, Timo JaakkolaJarmo Liukkonen & Anthony Watt

Vol. 1 2010, pages 69–887
Published April 21, 2010


The aim of the study was to investigate the relationships between enjoyment, perceived physical activity competence, fundamental movement skills, and physical activity engagement of Grade 7 students participating in Finnish physical education. A secondary aim of the study was to examine gender differences in all assessed variables. The participants of the study were 404 Grade 7 students aged 13 years. The sample comprised 210 girls and 194 boys, who were involved in 23 classes taught by 10 physical education teachers at three secondary schools. Physical activity engagement, enjoyment, and perceived physical activity competence were assessed by self-report questionnaires. Locomotor skill was evaluated by the shuttle running test, balance skill by the flamingo standing test, and manipulative skills by the figure-8 dribbling test. Results of a stepwise regression analysis revealed that only perceived physical activity competence was a statistically significant predictor of physical activity engagement. The t-tests revealed that the girls scored better in the balance test, whereas the boys scored better in the shuttle running test. Additionally, the boys perceived higher levels of physical activity competence than the girls.

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About the Authors

SAMI KALAJA, TIMO JAAKKOLA and JARMO LIUKKONEN are affiliated with the Department of Sport Sciences, University of Jyväskylä, Finland.

ANTHONY WATT is a researcher at School of Education and Centre for Aging, Rehabilitation and Exercise Science, Victioria University, Australia.

Does Elite Sport Develop Mass Sport? A Norwegian Case Study

by Dag Vidar Hanstad & Eivind Å. Skille

Vol. 1 2010, pages 51–68
Published March 31, 2010


The notion that elite sport generates mass sport,seems to be a social fact among many and influential members of the society. The issue is, however, under-researched, and the little research which actually exists does not confirm a causal link. In this article, we take as a point of departure the case of Norwegian biathlon, and its development, both as elite sport and mass sport, to nuance the picture. We are not guided by any particular theory, but believe in a thick description of the empirical case in order to understand it. Therefore a mixture of methods is applied: document analysis, statistics and interviews. The article shows how increased income from elite performance makes it possible for a sport federation to make strategies and prioritize incentives for recruitment of mass participants. At the same time, it is evident that the relationship between elite sport and mass sport is best understood as a complexity of figurations where economic, strategic and other aspects interplay. In sum, elite sport does not generate mass sport per se, but it may contribute indirectly. In the end, it is critically reminded that mass sport is not prioritized to elite sport; apparently, the former is “prioritized” only when the latter is prioritized first.

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About the Authors

DAG VIDAR HANSTAD is PhD student at the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences, Oslo.

EIVIND Å. SKILLE is teacher and sport studies researcher at Hedmark University College, Elverum, Norway.

Dansk eliteidræts konkurrenceevne: Resultater, målemetoder og investeringer

by Rasmus K. Storm & Klaus Nielsen

Vol. 1 2010, pages 27–49
Published March 31, 2010


The competitiveness of Danish Elite Sports: Results, Measurement and Policy
In the Nordic countries, national investments in elite sports have become a political issue in the wake of the Olympic Games in China. It is discussed whether the results in Beijing were satisfactory and how the results can be maintained or improved in the future. In this article the assumptions of this political debate are criticized and reformulated. A proper discussion requires an understanding of input (elite sports investment) and throughput (the efficiency of the elite sports system) as well as output (national results). This article focuses on the output and aims to develop better forms of measurement of elite sports results than the simple absolute measures in the form of number of medals that are usually referred to in political debates and the media. The measures are applied in an analysis of the development of Danish elite sports results. The figures show that Denmark progressed significantly in the 1990’s similar to most other Western European countries. In the last decade, however, the results have deteriorated.

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About the Authors

RASMUS K. STORM is Senior Analyst at Danish Institute for Sports Studies, Copenhagen.

KLAUS NIELSEN IS Professor of Institutional Economics at Birkbeck College, University  of London.

The “Norwegian Soccer Wonder”: A Game Theoretic Approach

by Kjetil K. Haugen

Vol. 1 2010, pages 1–16
Published March 31, 2010


This paper proposes a simple game theoretic framework for analyzing strategic choices in soccer matches. This framework is applied in order to explain the rise an fall of soccer nations like Norway, who reach international competitive performance by introducing specialized strategies. Additionally, it is shown that the best choice for such teams may – at certain time points in their “life cycle” – not be to improve their preferred strategy further. It is actually possible to show that such a strategic choice may be disadvantageous. Finally, certain cases are shown to have characteristics such that it is “optimal”, in a game theoretic perspective, to actually decrease playing strength in order to “flip” the Nash equilibrium to a more suitable one. As such, “unexpected” behavior of very good teams choosing to loose against very bad teams may be explained.

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About the Author

KJETIL K. HAUGEN is Professor of Logistics at Molde University College, in Norway. His sport studies interest includes the economics of association football.