"Hero Imagery" - Are there performance advantages associated with imagining yourself as your favourite athlete?

Uphill, M. A., Balsdon, A., Brown, Mathew, Digby-Bowl, C., Southam, M. and Swain, J. (2015) "Hero Imagery" - Are there performance advantages associated with imagining yourself as your favourite athlete? In: British Psychological Society Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology Conference, 14th-15th December, 2015, The Queens Hotel, Leeds.

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Abstract

Objectives: This study examined whether there are performance advantages associated with a single bout of imagery when imagining yourself ‘as your favourite athlete’, or imagining yourself performing a strength-based task.

Design: A blind 2 (Imagery ability: high, low) x 3 (imagery condition: self, “hero”, control) mixed factorial design was used.

Methods: Participants (n = 17 male; Mage = 19.7 ± 2.7) completed the Sport Imagery Ability Questionnaire then viewed a standardised video demonstrating the grip strength (GS) task. Three baseline trials separated by one minute were then executed. Three imagery scripts (control, self, hero) were then presented to participants via an MP3 player in a counterbalanced order (an interval of 1-minute was provided between each condition). The conclusion of each imagery script prompted participants to perform the GS task. Performance in each condition was conceptualised as delta change scores (Imagery condition – baseline average).
Results: No main effects were present but there was a group x condition interaction (F(2,28) = 4.27, p = .02. ƞ_p^2= .23. The interaction suggests that for individuals with high imagery ability, simply “doing the imagery that they already do” is preferable compared to a scripted self- or hero-imagery condition. For individuals with a low imagery ability, a simple script whether that is self- or hero- based may enhance strength performance, compared to “what they already do”.

Conclusion: Imagery ability may influence the effectiveness of a brief imagery intervention. Further examination of processes and outcomes associated with “hero-imagery” is recommended.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GV Recreation Leisure > GV0706 Sports psychology
Divisions: Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences > School of Human and Life Sciences
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Mrs Caroline Digby-Bowl
Date Deposited: 10 Feb 2016 16:51
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2016 09:28
URI: https://create.canterbury.ac.uk/id/eprint/14310

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00