Flow state in self-paced and externally-paced performance contexts: An examination of the flow model

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Koehn, Stefan, Morris, Tony and Watt, Anthony P (2013) Flow state in self-paced and externally-paced performance contexts: An examination of the flow model. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 14 (6). pp. 787-795. ISSN 1469-0292


Objectives Kimiecik and Stein's (1992) flow model proposed that personal and situational factors affect the experience of flow. Singer, 1988 and Singer, 2000 argued that different mental processes underlie self-initiated and reactive performances. The first purpose of this study was to examine main and interaction effects between imagery use and confidence on flow state in different performance contexts. The second purpose was to assess main and interaction effects between flow state, imagery, and confidence on self-paced service and externally-paced groundstroke performance in tennis. Design This field study used a repeated-measures design. Method A pilot study was conducted to inform the set up of the two performance contexts. Flow states were assessed on two separate occasions, (a) for the service performance, and (b) for the groundstroke performance. A total of 60 junior tennis athletes completed imagery and confidence measures before the field test. Results A significant interaction between imagery and confidence was found for flow state in the groundstroke but not in the service task. No significant interaction effects were found for performance outcome. Flow state significantly predicted groundstroke performance, and imagery and confidence predicted service performance. Conclusions The examination of flow in different performance contexts is challenging. Imagery and confidence are central to the experience of flow. Flow state appeared to be more important for the externally-paced than self-paced task. The relationship between flow and performance is complex, which requires the conceptual expansion of Kimiecik and Stein's (1992) flow model.

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Item type Article
URI https://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/24283
DOI 10.1016/j.psychsport.2013.06.001
Official URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S...
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science
Historical > FOR Classification > 1701 Psychology
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > College of Education
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > Institute of Sport, Exercise and Active Living (ISEAL)
Keywords flow, confidence, imagery, performance, interaction
Citations in Scopus 13 - View on Scopus
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