Term of Award

2000

Degree Name

Master of Science in Kinesiology with an Emphasis in Sport Psychology

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Department

Department of Health and Kinesiology

Committee Chair

Kevin L. Burke

Committee Member 1

A. Barry Joyner

Committee Member 2

Charles J. Hardy

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine if brief sessions of imagery had an effect upon concentration style and free throw shooting performance of intercollegiate basketball players. Participants in this study were four current and two former Division I basketball players. A single-subject design was implemented for this investigation (Swain & Jones, 1995; Vernacchia & Cook, 1993; Kendall, Hrycaiko, Martin, & Kendall, 1990). Data collection occurred during the college basketball season to obtain the free throw percentages from actual game situations for the players who were playing. Data for the two players who had finished their college eligibility consisted of previous free throw percentage at the institution. Each participant completed the Basketball Concentration Survey (Bergandi, 1990) (BCS) and the Rockne Free Throw Questionnaire (RFTQ, 1999). The RFTQ is an experimental questionnaire designed to measure self-confidence in free throw shooting. Participants then began shooting free throws three times a week for six weeks. Each session consisted of five warm-up free throws, estimating how many free throws out of 50 would be made, and then shooting 50 free throws. Free throws were shot 10 at a time, with a short break between each 10. A multiple baseline design was used to introduce imagery to each participant in a different week, beginning in week two of the study. Therefore, brief imagery training was utilized for different time periods by five of the six basketball players. Before the first imagery session, imagery was briefly explained to each participant. Each participant was then asked to imagine successfully shooting 10 free throws before shooting the actual 50 free throws. Participants performed the imagery session while standing at the free throw line with their eyes closed with a maximum time limit of five minutes. Once the imagery was introduced to the athlete, the athlete continued to use the imagery before shooting the free throws for the remainder of the study. Prior to beginning the fourth week, each participant again completed the BCS and RFTQ. At the completion of the study, participants completed the BCS and RFTQ for a third time. Each also completed a post-imagery survey concerning their perceived effectiveness of the imagery. Results from this study showed no consistent changes on the BCS subscales. An increase was found with several of the participant's scores on the RFTQ questionnaire. No important increases were found in the free throw shooting. Results did show a high self-efficacy in estimating free throw attempts. All five participants using imagery reported feeling that the imagery helped them, and two participants reported that they would continue to use the imagery.

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