HEALTH / WELL-BEING

Psychological strategies of Veterans and service members who participate in organized sports

Article

This study examines the performance strategies of service members and veterans who participated in the warrior games.

Abstract

Introduction: The study sought to examine the performance strategies of wounded, ill, and injured service members and Veterans who participate in the Warrior Games. Methods: The Test of Performance Strategies (TOPS) was completed by 23 men and 5 women participants on the first and last days of the Warrior Games. The participants were separated into 2 groups: those who had participated in organized sporting events for more than 1 year (experienced; n¼14) and those who had less than 1 year of experience (novice; n¼14). A mixed-model ANOVA was used to assess pre–post changes and the effect of experience on total TOPS scores. Results: Overall participation in the Warrior Games did not change the performance strategies used by the participants. However, experienced participants had higher post-competition sub-scale scores than novice participants in the categories of self-talk, goal setting, and activation (p < 0.05). Discussion: While participation in a single Warrior Games event did not appear to change participants’ short-term psychological thought processes around competition and practice, more than 1 year of participation in organized sporting events was associated with improved skills.

Full Reference

Peterson, S., Laferrier, J., Koontz, A., Wang, H., Hannan, M., Cooper, R. (2017). Psychological strategies of Veterans and service members who participate in organized sports. Journal of Military, Veteran, and Family Health. Vol: 3 (2), p. 42-52.