Cohesiveness, coach's interpersonal style and psychological needs: Their effects on self-determination and athletes' subjective well-being

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Goal: The goal of this study was to test the impact of cohesiveness and coaches' controlling interpersonal style on athletes' perceptions of autonomy, competence and relatedness. A contextual motivation sequence [Vallerand, R. J. (1997). Toward a hierarchical model of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. In M. Zanna (Ed.), Advances in experimental social psychology, Vol. 29 (pp. 271–360). New York: Academic Press.] was tested whereby social factors supporting the satisfaction of basic needs would increase the level of sport self-determination, which in turn, should predict subjective well-being in athletes. Method: The proposed sequence was tested with 197 basketball players using structural equation modeling. The hypothesized model was supported. Results: Perceptions of cohesiveness positively predicted the satisfaction of the basic needs. Perceptions of coaches' controlling interpersonal style negatively impacted feelings of autonomy. In turn, psychological needs predicted self-determination in sports ensuing greater sport satisfaction and positive emotions in sports. Tests of indirect effects also supported the mediating role of psychological needs and self-determination. Conclusion: Results are discussed in light of the different types of motivational antecedents and their influence on the psychological needs.


Institute for Positive Psychology and Education

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Journal Article

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