Author

Luke Zuber

Date of Award

5-2020

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Kinesiology

First Advisor

Erik Lind, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Larissa True, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Peter McGinnis, Ph.D.

Abstract

Sport commitment is defined as “…the desire and resolve to continue sport participation” (Scanlan, Carpenter, Schmidt, Simons, & Keeler, 1993, p. 6). Since the first definition, the concept has been further refined to reflect a more multidimensional paradigm. Overall, sport commitment is thought to be comprised of the dimensions of enthusiastic commitment and constrained commitment (Scanlan, Chow, Sousa, Scanlan, & Knifsend, 2016). Those constructs can be broken down further to 12 subconstructs that are represented in the Sport Commitment – 2 (SC; Scanlan, Chow, Sousa, Scanlan, & Knifsend, 2016), in order to evaluate the source and level of an individual’s commitment to their sport. In any competition, performance is vital, and it is how we judge athletic performance. In a sport such as soccer, with non-stop play and a game based on flow, it lacks quantifiable performance measures. It is also a sport with few substitutions which is why playing time was the main measurable used in this study. Coaches choose who plays the majority of minutes based on practices, and few changes are made because consistency is the goal. The goal of this study is to see if one’s level of commitment in a team sport relates to on-field performance. After recording total minutes played, games played in, and average minutes per game of the 2018 season, qualified participants were asked to self-record the minutes of exercise they completed a week for eight consecutive weeks and sent the sport commitment questionnaire. Significant results were found relating performance and sport commitment, performance and constrained sport commitment, and games played in and self-reported exercise. Considering limitations and the small sample size (N =11), it is encouraging to confirm the relationship between past performance and off-season training, and performance and sport commitment; however, iv the relationship between performance and constrained commitment plus the lack of relationship between performance and enthusiastic commitment is directly controversial with previous literature. Sport commitment is used to predict long-term future performances, yet the collegiate demographic is completely overlooked by sports psychologists. There are endless variables in a student athlete’s time involved with a team, and recent past performances have yet to be included in the sport commitment model. College students have the option to be involved with a team up to five years, and level of commitment throughout that time can be constantly changing based on infinite variables. Therefore, more research needs to be conducted regarding all athletes and their commitment to their sport among this demographic.

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