Effects of a season-long PST program on gymnastic performance and on psychological skill development

Abstract : Findings are reported of an evaluation of the effects of a 10-month PST program on performance and psychological indicators. Ten nationally ranked female gymnasts (M = 12 years old) followed a psychological skills training (PST) program for half an hour per week. The five-step intervention consisted of relaxation, self-talk, goal setting, focusing, and visualization. Performance scores were obtained using scores and rankings during two consecutive competitive seasons. The OMSAT-3 © was used to individually assess 11 psychological indicators (Durand-Bush, 1995). Data were recorded before the intervention and after every step of the intervention, during the course of the competitive seasons. Repeated ANOVAs as well as a practical assessment of the data were completed. The PST program appeared to be most effective on imagery skills, relaxation, activation, focusing, and refocusing. On three events out of four (bars, beam, floor), the 10 gymnasts progressed 5% more than 11 other gymnasts who did not follow this PST program.
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Claire Calmels, Jean F. Fournier, Natalie Durand-Bush, John H. Salmela. Effects of a season-long PST program on gymnastic performance and on psychological skill development. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, Taylor & Francis (Routledge), 2005, 3 (1), pp.59-77. ⟨10.1080/1612197X.2005.9671758⟩. ⟨hal-01575583⟩

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