Thinking in action: Some insights from cognitive sport psychology

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Title: Thinking in action: Some insights from cognitive sport psychology
Authors: Moran, Aidan P.
Permanent link: http://hdl.handle.net/10197/4274
Date: Aug-2012
Abstract: Historically, cognitive researchers have largely ignored the domain of sport in their quest to understand how the mind works. This neglect is due, in part, to the limitations of the information processing paradigm that dominated cognitive psychology in its formative years. With the emergence of the embodiment approach to cognition, however, sport has become a dynamic natural laboratory in which to investigate the relationship between thinking and skilled action. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to explore some insights into the relationship between thinking and action that have emerged from recent research on exceptional performance states (e.g., ‘flow’ and ‘choking’) in athletes. The paper begins by explaining why cognitive psychologists’ traditional indifference to sport has been replaced by a more enthusiastic attitude in recent years. The next section provides some insights into the relationship between thinking and skilled action that have emerged from research on ‘flow’ (or peak performance) and ‘choking’ (or impaired performance) experiences in athletes. The third section of the paper explores some practical issues that arise when athletes seek to exert conscious control over their thoughts in competitive situations. The final part of the paper considers the implications of research on thinking in action in sport for practical attempts to improve thinking skills in domains such as business organizations and schools.
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: Elsevier
Copyright (published version): 2012, Elsevier
Keywords: Cognitive psychology
DOI: 10.1016/j.tsc.2012.03.005
Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
Appears in Collections:Psychology Research Collection

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