For marathon runners who are similarly trained and equally healthy, mental and emotional skills are likely to play an important role in determining who performs closer to his/her potential. For this investigation, a sample of seven male and three female above-average marathon runners completed a survey questionnaire followed by an interview. Both the survey questionnaire and the interview guide are based on Maher's (2004a) Framework of Mental and Emotional Skills for Athletes. The data resulting from this investigation are used for two purposes: (1) to formulate an understanding of the mental and emotional skills needed by marathon runners to enable them to reach their potential on race day; and (2) to delineate a set of guidelines for the development and practice of particular mental and emotional skills. Results indicate that Maher's (2004a) framework is applicable to marathon runners. The mental and emotional skills needs expressed by marathon runners include developing and improving race day strategy, self-confidence, managing emotional intensity, and composure. Relative mental and emotional skills strengths for above-average marathon runners include perspective, personal awareness, passion for running, and desire for continuous improvement. Guidelines for the development and practice of mental and emotional skills by marathon runners include, but are not limited to: (1) setting process improvement goals, (2) reducing race randomness through pre-race routine and course strategy, (3) using positive self-talk, (4) exposure and habituation to derailers, and (5) more systematic processes for evaluation and continuous improvement.Both the survey questionnaire and the interview guide are based on Mahera#39;s (2004a) Framework of Mental and Emotional Skills for Athletes.
|Title||:||Toward an Understanding of Mental and Emotional Skills Needs of Marathon Runners|
|Author||:||Jonathan D. Cordell|
|Publisher||:||ProQuest - 2006|