Gender comparisons of sport psychological skills profile of adolescent sport participants
The primary aim of this study was to explore gender differences regarding the sport psychological skills (SPS) profile of adolescent sport participants in a South African context. The present study forms part of an extensive five-year longitudinal study, the Physical Activity and Health Longitudinal Study (PAHL-Study). A crosssectional research design was used to gather quantitative data. Two hundred and eleven (89 boys and 122 girls) grade nine pupils (14 and 15 years of age) participated in the study. The participants completed the Athletic Coping Skills Inventory for Sport (ACSI-28) to determine their SPS profile. The results showed that the boys obtained higher mean scores in seven of the eight measured sport psychological skills. Freedom from worry was the only skill that yielded a statistically significant difference, with the boys (52.06±20.27) obtaining a higher mean value than the girls (46.17±20.56). In conclusion, the current findings indicated that, at this developmental level of competitive sport, boys and girls participants seem to be very similar regarding their sport psychological skills dispositions.
Keywords: Adolescents; Gender differences; Participation; Profile; Psychological skills; Sports participants.