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ERIC Number: EJ901557
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 22
ISSN: ISSN-0892-4562
Motivation through Goal Setting: A Self-Determined Perspective
Sullivan, Gregory S.; Strode, James P.
Strategies: A Journal for Physical and Sport Educators, v23 n6 p19-23 Jul-Aug 2010
For many coaches, motivation comes in the form of a great pre-game speech that fires up the athletes and inspires them to victory. While a pep-talk may certainly aid in motivating a team, its merits are often relied upon too heavily regarding its efficacy. Despite the tremendous amount of research that has been conducted, motivation still appears to be a widely misunderstood concept. This misunderstanding has led to poor practice in many domains including sport. There is a great deal of sport science research conducted in universities and colleges around the world, but not much finds its way to the people that can apply the research--coaches and administrators. Further, the challenge to both researchers and practitioners "is to better understand the goal-setting process to maximize the motivational and self-confidence benefits that goals can provide, thereby enhancing performance." An understanding of why an athlete persists or drops out of a sport and the role that coaches play in keeping athletes involved in sports is critically important today as organized sport continues to grow and is one of the primary sources of activity for today's youths. This article introduces the reader to an important motivational theory--Self-Determination Theory. The theory highlights the importance of self-regulation and intrinsic motivation. Coaches can influence the opportunity for athletes to experience intrinsic regulation by fostering a motivational climate that meets three important psychological needs: (1) autonomy; (2) relatedness; and (3) competency. This article focuses on the need for competency and the use of goal-setting in meeting that need. Coaches and athletes have the opportunity to work together and create goals that will enable the athlete to perceive themselves as being competent. With a competent athlete, the chance increases for that athlete to feel enjoyment, satisfaction, and persistence and to stay motivated to continue their athletic participation. (Contains 1 figure.)
American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. 1900 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191. Tel: 800-213-7193; Fax: 703-476-9527; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A