Perceived uncertainty of outcome as a contributing factor in competitive state anxiety

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Marchant, Daryl, Andersen, Mark B and Morris, Tony (1997) Perceived uncertainty of outcome as a contributing factor in competitive state anxiety. Australian Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport , 29 (2). pp. 41-46. ISSN 0813-6289


The Martens, Vealey, and Burton (1990) model of competitive anxiety contains perceived uncertainty, perceived importance, and competitive trait anxiety (A-trait) as key determinants affecting a person's perception of threat and competitive state anxiety (A-state). This experiment tested perceived uncertainty of outcome and A-trait influences on A-state. Club level golfers (N = 72) were assigned to either a low uncertainty condition (LU) or a high uncertainty (HU) condition. In this experiment participants were matched and competed for 12 golf balls in a modified chipping competition. Participants also completed the Competitive State Anxiety Inventory -2 and the Match Orientation Questionnaire (a measure of perceived uncertainty) prior to, and during breaks in the competition. Players alternated in taking four rounds of eight shots from a zone marked approximately 30 metres from the hole. A series of tests did not support the manipulation of uncertainty. This was probably due to likely losers and likely winners not experiencing similar levels of A-state, as Martens et al. assume. Recoding the uncertainty data to reflect levels of confidence, and entering confidence and A-trait into multiple regression equations resulted in these two variables accounting for between 15% and 23% of the A-state variance at different stages of the competition. Recommendations for future research, and possible revisions of the model in light of the present findings are discussed.

Item type Article
Subjects Historical > RFCD Classification > 320000 Medical and Health Sciences
Historical > FOR Classification > 1701 Psychology
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > Centre for Ageing, Rehabilitation, Exercise & Sport Science (CARES)
Keywords anxiety, perception
Citations in Scopus 6 - View on Scopus
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