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The relationship between mental toughness and affect intensity

By Lee Crust

Abstract

Mentally tough athletes are conceptualized as being able to function effectively in stressful\ud situations and recent research has found small to moderate correlations between mental\ud toughness and coping. Despite this no research has thus far examined the possibility that\ud mentally tough athletes experience less intense emotions. This paper tested the relationship\ud between mental toughness and affect intensity to determine whether mentally tough athletes\ud generally experienced more or less intense emotions. A sample of 112 sport performers (55\ud men and 57 women) aged between 18 and 51 years (M = 29.3, s = 10.3) acted as\ud participants, and ranged from recreational to national level in a variety of sports. Mental\ud toughness and affect intensity were found to be unrelated. This is an important finding\ud because it suggests participants with high or low levels of mental toughness do not\ud characteristically experience more or less intense emotions. Thus there is no evidence to\ud suggest the ability of mentally tough athletes to remain relatively unaffected by pressure or\ud adversity is due to lower levels of affect intensity. More research is required to understand\ud how mentally tough athletes (in comparison to less tough athletes) maintain control and\ud high levels of performance in stressful circumstances

Topics: C600 Sports Science
Publisher: Elsevier
Year: 2009
DOI identifier: 10.1016/j.paid.2009.07.023
OAI identifier: oai:eprints.lincoln.ac.uk:2476

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