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SELF-CONFIDENCE: THE KEY TO SPORT SUCCESS. Damon Burton and Bernie Holliday Vandal Sport Psychology Services University of Idaho. What is self-confidence?. SELF- CONFIDENCE DEFINED. True Self-Confidence – is a realistic belief or expectation of achieving success. Self-Confidence is:

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  1. SELF-CONFIDENCE: THE KEY TO SPORT SUCCESS Damon Burton and Bernie Holliday Vandal Sport Psychology Services University of Idaho

  2. What is self-confidence?

  3. SELF- CONFIDENCE DEFINED • True Self-Confidence– is a realistic belief or expectation of achieving success. • Self-Confidence is: • not what you hope todobut what you realistically expect to do • not what you tell othersbut your innermost thoughts about your realistic capabilities, • not pride in past deedsbut a realistic judgment about what you are able to do

  4. Does self-confidence enhance performance?

  5. SELF-CONFIDENCE ENHANCES PERFORMANCE • Mahoney & Avener (1976) 1976 Olympic qualifiers were more confident than nonqualifiers. • Feltz’ (1988) review found moderate to strong relationships between confidence and performance (i.e., mean r = .54). • Research finds a reciprocal relationship between self-confidence and performance.

  6. HOW SELF-CONFIDENCE IMPACTS PERFORMANCE • lowers anxiety by creating positive expectations of success, • increases motivation by raising perceived competence, • enhances concentration by eliminating distraction from negative thoughts and personal putdowns.

  7. What are the three types of self-confidence?


  9. OPTIMALSELF-CONFIDENCE • Competence-- possess the knowledge, strategies, skills and abilities necessary for success, • Preparation– sufficiently prepared so you can successfully perform those skills and strategies in a particular competitive situation. • Villanova’s 1984 upset of Georgetown in the NCAA Championship Game.

  10. DIFFIDENT ATHLETES . . . • confuse “what is” with what they “wish would be” or with what “ought to be,” • see themselves as losers and act accordingly, • mistakes devastate their competence, • self doubts fuel self-fulfilling prophecies that create a vicious negative spiral, • focus on their shortcomings and overlook their accomplishments, and • are underachievers whose confidence limits their development

  11. TYPES OF OVERCONFIDENCE • inflated confidence, and • false confidence.

  12. INFLATED CONFIDENCE • People who believe they are better than they really are and have an inflated opinion of themselves and their skills. • They overestimate their abilities while underestimating their opponents’ skills. • Pampering from parents/coaches, playing weak competition, and excessive media hype are its primary causes. • Often they are competent but don’t prepare adequately.

  13. FALSE CONFIDENCE • act confident on the outside but inside fear failure and are really diffident, • pretend to be brash, cocky and arrogant, • difficulty admitting errors and filled with excuses, • difficult to coach because they won’t accept responsibility for mistakes, and • normally prepare hard but lack the competence to be successful.

  14. What is the difference between performance and outcome confidence?

  15. PERFORMANCE- VERSUS OUTCOME CONFIDENCE • Performance Confidence – performers’ belief that they can execute the skills and strategies necessary to perform well and attain their goals. • Outcome Confidence – performers’ belief that they will socially compare well and win the competition.

  16. What are some specific strategies you use to boost your self-confidence?

  17. CONFIDENCE DEVELOPMENT STRATEGIES • general confidence development strategies, • six confidence development tips for practitioners, and • strategies for developing and maintaining confidence during competition.

  18. ENHANCING SELF-CONFIDENCE Performance Accomplishments Behaviors Vicarious Experiences Performance Self- Confidence Verbal Persuasion Thoughts Physiological Arousal Control


  20. GENERAL CONFIDENCE DEVELOPMENT STRATEGIES • performance accomplishment • goal-setting, • vicarious experiences, • modeling/demonstrations – Namath’s Jets, • imagery – Russell “déjà vu,” • verbal persuasion, • reinforcement – enhances feelings of competence, • self talk – confidence script, • arousal control.

  21. CONFIDENCE-DEVELOPMENT TIPS FOR PRACTITIONERS • develop a systematic goal setting program and log and graph progress, • create a personal Hall-of-Fame, • design a systematic conditioning program and maximize preparation, • use effective modeling strategies, • replay past successes and imagine future triumphs, and • emphasize confidence-building thoughts.

  22. How do you maintain your self-confidence during competition?

  23. DEVELOPING & MAINTAINING COMPETITIVE CONFIDENCE • appraise situations as challenges rather than threats, • develop readiness, performance and recovery plans to deal with problems, • emphasize problem-focused coping strategies to reduce threat, • use emotion-focused coping techniques to feel less threatened, and • focus on more controllable process and performance goals.

  24. What is the self-fulfilling prophecy?

  25. SELF-FULFILLING PROPHECY • Self-Fulfilling Prophecies – occur when coaches’/teachers’ expectations prompt athletes/students to behave or perform in a way that conforms with those expectancies. • Rosenthal and Jacobson (1968) found that a group teachers believed were “academic late bloomers” made greater educational gains than did a control group for whom they had neutral expectancies. • Expectancies of teachers, coaches and parents can significantly raise or lower performers’ self-confidence.

  26. What are the four (4) steps of the Self-Fulfilling Prophecy Process?


  28. SELF-FULFILLING PROPHECY PROCESS • STEP 1 – Coaches Develop Expectations • STEP 2 – Coaches’ Expectations Influence their Treatment of Athletes (i.e., frequency, duration, and quality of interactions) • STEP 3 – Athletes’ Learning and Performance Is Impacted by Differential Treatment • STEP 4 -- Athletes’ Behavior Conforms to Coaches’ Expectations

  29. STEP 1: COACHES FORM EXPECTATIONS • Person Cues • race, • gender • socioeconomic status, • size, • body type, and • style of dress. • Performance Information • conditioning and skills tests, • previous performance history, • evaluation of others, and • tryout information.

  30. STEP 2: DIFFERENTIAL EXPECTANCIES IMPACT COACHING BEHAVIORS • type, frequency and warmth of interactions, • nature of instructional behaviors (e.g., skills taught, difficulty of skills, and persistence) • nature of feedback behaviors (e.g., valence, specificity, and corrective content) • attributions for success and failure.

  31. STEP 3: COACHES’ BEHAVIOR IMPACTS ATHLETES’ PERFORMANCE • quantity and quality of learning, • quality of competitive cognitions and performance, and • long-term development.

  32. STEP 4: ATHLETES’ PERFORMANCE CONFORMS WITH COACHES’ EXPECTATIONS • Athletes most susceptible to Self-Fulfilling Prophecy effects are . . . • younger, • less experienced, • lower in self-esteem, • more coachable, and • value success more.

  33. How do we maximize positive Self-Fulfilling Prophecy effects?

  34. HOW TO MAXIMIZE POSITIVE SFP EFFECTS • Determine what sources of information are used to form expectations. • Realize initial expectancies may be inaccurate, requiring adjustment as performers skill changes. • Equalize skill-development time across athletes. • Provide all performers sufficient time to fully master skills. • Respond to errors with corrective instruction. • Focus on product as a means to attain product. • Develop good coach-athlete relationships. • Create a performance-oriented team climate.

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