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Sport Psychology

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Sport Psychology(psy407)
VU
Lesson 28
THE ROLE OF HYPNOSIS IN SPORT
Like imagery, hypnosis is a cognitive-behavioral process that has both a cognitive function and a
motivational function. In a cognitive sense, hypnosis is used to restructure the way athletes think about
themselves and about the way they execute and learn new sport skills. In a motivational sense, hypnosis is
used to modify emotions, reduce anxiety, increase or decreases arousal, and increase effort. In the initial
induction phase, hypnotism is physiologically identical to progressive relaxation, autogenic training, and
meditation. All of these intervention strategies are associated with reductions in oxygen consumption,
respiration rate, and heart rate.
Perhaps because it is poorly understood, hypnosis is not a widely utilized intervention strategy in sport.
Nideffer (1992) is one of the few sport psychologists who advocate its use on a broad scale. A dated but
well-known application of hypnosis took place before the first heavyweight boxing match between
Muhammad Ali and Ken Norton in 1973. Norton reportedly hired a professional hypnotist to help him
bolster his self-confidence and reduce prematch anxiety. Norton won the match in a stunning upset,
effectively calling attention to hypnosis as a viable intervention strategy.
While there may be some potential risks associated with the indiscriminate use of hypnosis by an untrained
therapist, most concerns about hypnosis are unfounded. It is probably fair to say that hypnosis is more
clouded by myths and misconceptions than any other form of psychological intervention.
Our discussion of hypnosis in sport will focus upon the following topics. The first two topics will be
discussed in this lecture, and the remaining in the next lecture.
1.
Defining hypnosis
2.
Theories of hypnosis
3.
The hypnotic trait issue
4.
Facts about hypnosis
5.
Achieving the hypnotic trance
6.
Self-hypnosis
7.
Improving effective use of hypnosis
8.
Hypnosis and athletic performance.
Defining Hypnosis
The term hypnosis comes from Hypnos, the Greek god of sleep (Kalat, 1999), even though it has long been
known that hypnosis is not related to sleep. Hypnosis could be defined as "The uncritical acceptance of a
suggestion" or "An induced temporary condition of being, a state that differs mentally and physiologically
from a person's normal state of being".
Theories of Hypnosis
We will briefly discuss three theories of hypnosis. The first two re represent extreme positions on the issue
of the existence of a hypnotic state, while the third represents a compromise position that has been
embraced by many psychologists. The theories to be discussed are:
1.
Social-cognitive Theory
2.
Hypnosis as an Altered State of Consciousness
3.
Neodissociation Theory
© Copyright Virtual University of Pakistan
87
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Sport Psychology(psy407)
VU
Social-Cognitive Theory
Social-cognitivists believe that subjects carry out hypnotic behaviors because they have positive attitudes,
motivations, and expectations that lead to a willingness to think and imagine using themes suggested by the
hypnotist.
Therapists who are of the social-cognitive theory school of thought believe in the use of hypnotism as a
method of increasing a client's willingness to accept suggestions, but they do not believe that this state of
uncritical acceptance of suggestions represents an altered state of consciousness.
Hypnosis as an Altered State of Consciousness
At the other extreme are psychologists who believe that hypnotized individuals enter into an altered state of
consciousness known as trance. It is believed that the trance-like state is different from other
nonhypnotically induced states such as daydreaming and relaxation. While in the hypnotic state or trance,
the individual is susceptible to suggestions made by the hypnotist.
Neodissociation Theory
Neodissociation theory explains hypnosis without suggesting that the hypnotic trance is responsible for the
phenomenon associated with hypnosis. Daydreaming and relaxation are considered by many theorists to be
examples of the altered state of consciousness that we experience every day. We drive to work each day with
our minds focused on anything but the drive, then suddenly we arrive at our destination with little recall of
the actual drive. This is a form of hypnosis, or what is referred to as dissociation.
Neodissociation theory is based on two assumptions:
1. There is a central control system that performs planning and monitoring functions in the brain.
2. Beneath the central control system there are relatively autonomous subordinate cognitive-behavioral
systems.
In the hypnotic trance state, however, the two systems are dissociated from each other. In the hypnotic
trance state the two systems are dissociated from each other. Some individuals will be more responsive to
hypnosis and hypnotic suggestions than others. Through proper preparation, most individuals can benefit
from hypnosis, but not all.
References
Cox, H. Richard. (2002). Sport Psychology: Concepts and Applications. (Fifth Edition). New York: McGraw-
Hill Companies
Lavallec. D., Kremer, J., Moran, A., & Williams. M. (2004) Sports Psychology: Contemporary Themes. New
York: Palgrave Macmillan Publishers
© Copyright Virtual University of Pakistan
88
Table of Contents:
  1. SPORT PSYCHOLOGY DEFINED:Issue of Certification, The Research Sport Psychologist
  2. SELF-CONFIDENCE AND SPORT PSYCHOLOGY:Successful Performance, Verbal persuasion
  3. SELECTING SELF-TALK STATEMENTS:Skill accusation, Controlling effort
  4. GOAL ORIENTATION:Goal Involvement, Motivational Climate
  5. CAUSAL ATTRIBUTION IN SPORT:Fritz Heiderís Contribution, Other Considerations
  6. CAUSAL ATTRIBUTIONS IN COMPETITIVE SITUATIONS:Locus of Causality
  7. MOTIVATION IN SPORT:Social Factors, Success and Failure, Coachesí Behavior
  8. FLOW: THE PSYCHOLOGY OF OPTIMAL EXPERIENCE, Goal Setting in Sport
  9. PRINCIPLES OF EFFECTIVE GOAL SETTING:Clearly identify time constraints
  10. A TEAM APPROACH TO SETTING GOALS:The Planning Phase, The Meeting Phase
  11. YOUTH SPORT:Distress and anxiety, Coach-Parent Relationships
  12. ATTENTION AND CONCENTRATION IN SPORT:Information Processing, Memory Systems
  13. ATTENTION AND CONCENTRATION IN SPORT:Measuring Attentional Focus
  14. PERSONALITY AND THE ATHLETE:Personality Defined, Psychodynamic Theory
  15. THE MEASUREMENT OF PERSONALITY:Projective Procedures, Structured Questionnaire
  16. PERSONALITY AND THE ATHLETE:Athletic Motivation Inventory, Personality Sport Type
  17. SITUATIONAL FACTORS RELATED TO ANXIETY AND MOOD:Type of Sport
  18. ANXIETY, AROUSAL, AND STRESS RELATIONSHIPS:Emotion and Mood
  19. ANXIETY, AROUSAL, AND STRESS RELATIONSHIPS:The Inverted-U Theory
  20. ALTERNATIVES TO INVERTED-U THEORY:Apterís Reversal Theory
  21. COPING STRATEGIES IN SPORT:Measurement of Coping Skill
  22. RELAXATION STRATEGIES FOR SPORT:Progressive Relaxation, Autogenic Training
  23. AROUSAL ENERGIZING STRATEGIES:Team Energizing Strategies, Fan Support
  24. AROUSAL ENERGIZING STRATEGIES:Precompetition Workout, Individual Goal Setting
  25. IMAGERY:Skill Level of the Athletes, Time Factors and Mental Practice
  26. IMAGERY:Symbolic Learning Theory, Imagery Perspective. Sensory Mode
  27. IMAGERY:Paivioís Two-Dimensional Model, Developing Imagery Skills
  28. THE ROLE OF HYPNOSIS IN SPORT:Defining Hypnosis, Social-Cognitive Theory
  29. THE ROLE OF HYPNOSIS IN SPORT:Achieving the Hypnotic Trance, Hypnotic Phase
  30. PSYCHOLOGICAL SKILLS TRAINING:Psychological Skills Training Program
  31. PSYCHOLOGICAL SKILLS TRAINING:Performance profiling, Performance routines
  32. ETHICS IN SPORT PSYCHOLOGY:Competence, Integrity, Social Responsibility
  33. AGGRESSION AND VIOLENCE IN SPORT:Defining Aggression, Catharsis hypothesis
  34. AGGRESSION AND VIOLENCE IN SPORT:The Catharsis Effect, Fan Violence
  35. AUDIENCE AND CROWD EFFECTS IN SPORTS:Social Facilitation, Crowd Hostility
  36. TEAM COHESION IN SPORT:Measurement of Team Cohesion
  37. TEAM COHESION IN SPORT:Predicting Future Participation, Team Building
  38. LEADERSHIP IN SPORT:Fiedlerís Contingency Theory, Coach-Athlete Compatibility
  39. EXERCISE PSYCHOLOGY:Special Populations, Clinical Patients
  40. EXERCISE PSYCHOLOGY:Social Interaction Hypothesis, Amine Hypothesis
  41. EXERCISE PSYCHOLOGY:The Theory of Planned Behavior, Social Cognitive Theory
  42. EXERCISE PSYCHOLOGY:Exercise Addiction, Bulimia Nervosa, Muscle Dysmorphia
  43. BURNOUT IN ATHLETES:Overtraining and Overreaching, Recommended Intervention
  44. THE PSYCHOLOGY OF ATHLETIC INJURIES:Personality Factors, Coping Resources
  45. DRUG ABUSE IN SPORT AND EXERCISE:Stimulants, Depressants