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

Conference poster


Uphill, M., Balsdon, A., Brown, M., Digby-Bowl, C., Southam, M. and Swain, J. 2015. "Hero Imagery" - Are there performance advantages associated with imagining yourself as your favourite athlete?
AuthorsUphill, M., Balsdon, A., Brown, M., Digby-Bowl, C., Southam, M. and Swain, J.
TypeConference poster
Description

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.

Year2015
ConferenceBritish Psychological Society Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology Conference
Related URLhttp://www.bps.org.uk/events/conferences/division-sport-and-exercise-psychology-conference
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Publication process dates
Deposited10 Feb 2016
Completed14 Dec 2015
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https://repository.canterbury.ac.uk/item/87q66/-hero-imagery-are-there-performance-advantages-associated-with-imagining-yourself-as-your-favourite-athlete

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