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Sports and Perfectionism

By alberto1345 May 05, 2013 292 Words
Alberto Reyes
SPS 180
Group 2

Perfectionism and Self-determination in Sports

Self-determination theory assumes that individuals satisfying their psychological needs of competence become autonomous motivated. Autonomous motivation refers to activities that athletes undertake because they either find it interesting and enjoyable, or internalize them to some degree because they consider them personally important. In contract, controlled motivation implied motivated behaviors for activities that athletes are coerced (persuaded by force) because of interpersonal psychologically pressuring reasons. “Controlled motivation, as opposed to autonomous motivation, reflects low degree of self-determined motivation because the athletes behavior is governed mainly by directives rather than one’s willingness and choice (Ryan & Deci, 2002)”.

The relationship between Perfectionism and Personality
“Perfectionism reflects the setting of excessively high standards of performance that coincides with disproportionately critical evaluation of one’s performance”(Frost 1990). Perfectionism can be either maladaptive or somewhat adaptive. Athletes who couldn’t adjust to perfectionism(maladaptive), may have concerns over mistakes, doubts about actions, socially prescribed criteria, and over-awareness about expected high-level performance. In contrast, relatively adaptive perfectionism athletes are motivated to perform under pressure due to goal setting and mental preparation. Athletes with high personal standards are more likely to put more effort if they remain motivated, as opposed to the athletes who are more concerned over mistakes, these are the athletes who are more likely to put less effort.


In conclusion, athletes with high personal standard are more likely to demonstrate better athletic coping behavior and put more effort in training if they regulate their motivated behavior with mental preparation, and athletes with a tendency to be concerned over their mistakes are more likely to lack self-motivation and put less effort during their daily training compared to autonomous motivated athletes.

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