An examination of motivational, goal achievement, and sport commitment differences in youth team and individual tennis populations

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Matthew Davis (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Diane Gill

Abstract: In recent years there has been a steady increase in the number of children playing team sports. Young people are also engaging in individual sports such as tennis, gymnastics, golf, and running. Therefore, research has been conducted on many aspects of motivation in individual sports. However, I sought to ask what happens when an individual sport is formatted into a team sport activity? Take tennis for example, which is inherently an individual sport. Many juniors have now started playing team tennis. Considerable research has been conducted on tennis players in relation to their motivation and goal achievement orientations (Balaguer, Duda, & Crespo, 1999; Crespo & Reid, 2007; Fry & Newton, 1993; Harwood & Swain, 1998; Hatzigeorgiadis & Biddle, 1999; Newton & Duda, 1993). However, little research has been conducted on motivation in team tennis. Additionally, sport commitment within tennis has also been analyzed, through use of the Sport Commitment Model (Casper & Andrew, 2008; Zahariadis, Tsorbatzoudis, & Alexandris, 2006). The purpose of this research was to ascertain in which type of competitive environment, team tennis or individual tennis, players display high or low task and ego orientations and perceived climate orientations. Additionally, differences in sport commitment among players between the different competitive contexts were examined. Junior tennis players in the Central North Carolina Region were surveyed relative to their goal achievement orientation, perceived motivational climate, and sport commitment, for their participation in team tennis and individual tennis. A total of seven measures were administered as there were two sets of the TEOSQ, two sets of PMCSQ-2, two sets of the SCM, and one demographic questionnaire. Explicit instructions were visible at the top of each survey and the participants were instructed to recall how they felt in recent team or individual tennis matches. With this data set, two-way Mixed Analyses of Variance (ANOVA) and regression analyses were performed. There were statistically significant findings for the effect of setting on ego orientation, perceived ego climate, sport commitment, and match importance. Additionally, there were statistically significant results for a gender effect for perceived ego climate, perceived task climate, and sport commitment. Further, regression analyses revealed the perceived task climate to be most predictive of sport commitment in both team and individual tennis.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2012
Goal achievement orienation, Junior tennis, Match importance, Perceived motivational climate, Sport commitment, TEOSQ
Tennis $x Psychological aspects $x Research
Group games $x Psychological aspects $x Research
Child athletes $x Psychology $x Research

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