Indexed on: 22 Mar '18Published on: 22 Mar '18Published in: Perceptual and motor skills
The present study sought to extend existing literature by examining the longitudinal directional relationships between perfectionistic strivings, autonomous motivation, and engagement in sport-specific activities among youth athletes in three team sports. Participants were 172 team sports athletes (mean age = 15.2 years, SD = 0.5; males = 94, females = 78) who completed measures of perfectionistic strivings and autonomous motivation at the start and end of a competitive season. Players also completed a training diary during the season. cross-lagged path analysis, found a reciprocal and positive relationship between autonomous motivation and engagement in sport-specific activities. In addition, higher perfectionistic strivings at the start of a competitive season were positively associated with engagement in sport-specific activities at the end of season and not the reverse. Autonomous motivation mediated this relationship between perfectionistic strivings and sport-specific activities engagement. Thus, this study supports the reciprocal association between motivation and engagement in sport-specific activities and unidirectional relations between perfectionistic strivings and sport-specific activities engagement among youth team sports athletes.