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PSY FPX 8841 Assessment 4 Team Performance Enhancement Plan

Name

Capella University

PSY FPX 8841 Performance Enhancement in Sports

Prof. Name

Date

Enhancing Team Performance Strategy

The following document outlines the Team Performance Enhancement Strategy devised by Coach Rebekah Woodson for a Collegiate Level Co-Ed Cheerleading squad, focusing on Track IV. This strategy aims to cultivate improved team dynamics in preparation for the team’s debut competition (APA Division 47, 2011). It delineates key factors influencing the team’s performance and proposes intervention tactics to address challenges and reinforce behaviors conducive to superior performance.

Identifying Performance Challenges

Coach Becky has expressed concerns regarding her athletes’ diminishing motivation and the lack of cohesion among teammates. This marks her first coaching experience with this team, which differs from her previous coaching roles. Notably, the university is a Historically Black College and University (HBCU), while Coach Becky, originating from the UK, is a Caucasian woman. Her coaching background primarily involves competitive teams, with limited exposure to both game day-style and competitive seasons. Several athletes question her qualifications to lead the team, exacerbating the existing motivational deficit. Coach Becky observes a pervasive lack of drive among her athletes, hindering their readiness for the upcoming competition season. Motivation, as defined by Bull and Sham (1996), encompasses both external stimuli and internal mechanisms that evoke and direct behavior, manifesting in extrinsic and intrinsic forms (Seipp, 1991).

PSY FPX 8841 Assessment 4 Team Performance Enhancement Plan

Additionally, Coach Becky notes a noticeable lack of cohesion between veteran members and rookies. Veterans employ initiation tactics during the learning process, exacerbating the divide. Cohesion, as described by Carron, Brawley, and Widmeyer (1998), embodies a dynamic process wherein a group coalesces and remains united in pursuit of shared goals.

Strategies for Performance Enhancement

Addressing Anxiety: Anxiety, an emotional state conducive to envisioning negative outcomes, poses a significant obstacle, particularly for first-time competition participants. Encouraging athletes to identify instances of tangible failure facilitates the transformation of anxiety into constructive fear, propelling them to hone their skills and mitigate potential shortcomings (Beckmann & Elbe, 2014).

Fostering Cohesion: To foster a more cohesive team dynamic, implementing a mentor-mentee system between veterans and rookies emerges as a prudent approach. Pairing athletes based on commonalities such as academic majors or geographic proximity facilitates rapport-building. Research by Montoya, Horton, and Kirchner (2008) underscores the significance of perceived similarity in fostering interpersonal connections. Additionally, increasing the duration of interaction among teammates augments cohesion (Eys et al., 2015).

Implementation and Integration

Integration into Practice: The anxiety-to-fear intervention and mentor-mentee sessions should be seamlessly integrated into practice schedules. This facilitates direct application of learned techniques within the sporting context, reinforcing their efficacy. Coach Becky’s active participation in these sessions reinforces her commitment to the team’s development and fosters mutual respect.

Ethical Considerations and Mental Health

Given the co-ed nature of the team, ethical considerations regarding equitable treatment of athletes warrant meticulous attention. The American Psychological Association’s guidelines (2017) caution against unfair discrimination, emphasizing the importance of fostering an inclusive environment. Moreover, vigilance regarding athletes’ mental health is imperative, with proactive referrals to mental health professionals warranted if issues arise.

Feedback and Revisions

Coach Becky’s feedback underscores the significance of fostering interpersonal connections within the team. Addressing her concerns, the strategy prioritizes integration of interventions into practice schedules, ensuring maximal efficacy and relevance. This approach not only enhances performance but also nurtures a sense of camaraderie among team members.

References

American Psychological Association. (2017). Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct. Retrieved from https://www.apa.org/ethics/code/

APA Division 47. (2011). Graduate training and career possibilities in exercise and sport psychology. Retrieved from https://www.apadivisions.org/division-47/about/resources/training

Association of Applied Sport Psychology. (2011). ETHICS CODE: AASP Ethical Principles and Standards | Association for Applied Sport Psychology. Retrieved from https://appliedsportpsych.org/about/ethics/ethics-code/

Beckmann, J., & Elbe, A. (2014). Sport psychological interventions in competitive sports. Newcastle upon Tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

Bull, A., & Sham, B. (1996). The mental game plan. Eastbourne, United Kingdom: Sports Dynamics.

Capella University. (n.d.). Tracks and Opportunities in Sport Psychology. Retrieved from http://media.capella.edu/CourseMedia/PSY8841/FlashCards_1/psy8841_career_61.asp

Carron, A. V., Brawley, L. R., & Widmeyer, W. N. (1998). The measurement of cohesiveness in sport groups. In J. L. Duda (Ed.), Advances in sport and exercise psychology measurement (pp. 213–226). Morgantown, WV: Fitness Information Technology.

Eys, M., Evans, M. B., Martin, L. J., Ohlert, J., Wolf, S. A., Van Bussel, M., & Steins, C. (2015). Cohesion and performance for female and male sport teams. The Sport Psychologist, 29(2), 97–109.

Montoya, R. M., Horton, R. S., & Kirchner, J. (2008). Is actual similarity necessary for attraction? A meta-analysis of actual and perceived similarity. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 25(6), 889–922. https://doi.org/10.1177/0265407508096700

PSY FPX 8841 Assessment 4 Team Performance Enhancement Plan

Seipp, B. (1991). Anxiety and academic performance: A meta-analysis of findings. Anxiety Research, 4(1), 27-41.

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