Self-compassion : a potential buffer for difficult experiences in sport for young female athletes
Through two phases we examined self-compassion as a way to promote healthy reactions, thoughts, and emotions in young women athletes when faced with emotionally difficult sport-specific scenarios. In Phase I, participants (N = 101; Mage = 20.0) completed measures of self-compassion, self-esteem, and narcissism, as well as reactions, thoughts, and emotions in response to hypothetical (i.e., responsible for a team loss) and recalled scenarios. After partialling out self-esteem and narcissism, self-compassion was related (p < .01) to negative affect (r =-.40), catastrophizing thoughts (r =-.30), personalizing thoughts (r =-.32), and behavioural equanimity (r =.28) for the hypothetical scenario. A similar pattern was found for the recalled scenario. Participants returning for Phase II were randomly assigned to a self-compassion induction (n = 21), self-esteem induction (n =20), or writing control (n =18) group. Following the induction, they responded to the same hypothetical scenario as in Phase I. A doubly multivariate analysis with self-esteem and narcissism as covariates showed a non-significant induction by time interaction, Wilks’ Lambda = .75, F (12, 96) = 1.27. However, hierarchical regression analysis similar to Leary et al. (2007) showed initial levels of self-compassion as the only significant predictor for negative affect, personalizing thoughts, and behavioural equanimity. Future research needs continued focus on how and when self-compassion is most useful to young women athletes.
DegreeMaster of Science (M.Sc.)
SupervisorKowalski, Kent C.
CommitteeKontulainen, Saija; Morrison, Todd
Copyright DateMay 2013
Young Female Athletes