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The New Psychology of Sport and Exercise

The New Psychology of Sport and Exercise
The Social Identity Approach

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Sports Psychology

August 2020 | 536 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

′The Roger Federer, the Steffi Graf, the Usain Bolt of all books about the psychology of sport, packed with insight and wisdom’ - Brian Viner, Sports writer and author of Pelé, Ali, Lillee, and Me 

This is the first textbook to explore and explain the contribution of social groups and social identity to all aspects of sports and exercise — from leadership, motivation and communication to mental health, teamwork, and fan behaviour.

In the context of increasing recognition of the importance of group processes for athletic performance, engagement in exercise and the business of sport, this book offers a new way of understanding, researching and practicing sport and exercise psychology

Written by an international team of researchers at the cutting edge of efforts to apply social identity principles to the world of sport and exercise, this will be an essential resource for students, teachers and practitioners who are keen to be at the forefront of thinking and practice.



Section 1: Introduction
Filip Boen, Katrien Fransen & S. Alexander Haslam
Chapter 1: Towards a new psychology of sport and exercise
S. Alexander Haslam, Katrien Fransen, Filip Boen & Stephen Reicher
Chapter 2: The social identity approach to sport and exercise psychology
Section 2: Performance
Niklas K. Steffens, Katrien Fransen & S. Alexander Haslam
Chapter 3: Leadership
Kim Peters
Chapter 4: Communication
Matthew J. Slater, Will Thomas & Andrew L. Evans
Chapter 5: Teamwork and group performance
Katharine H. Greenaway, Sindhuja Sankaran, Svenja A. Wolf & Jardine Mitchell
Chapter 6: Motivation
Jessica Salvatore, Sindhuja Sankaran & DaZané Cole
Chapter 7: Cognition and performance
Pete Coffee, Patti Parker, Ross Murray & Simon Kawycz
Chapter 8: Attribution
Svenja A. Wolf, Amit Goldenberg & Mickaël Campo
Chapter 9: Emotion and emotion regulation
Section 3: Participation
Mark Stevens, Tegan Cruwys, Tim Rees, S. Alexander Haslam, Filip Boen & Katrien Fransen
Chapter 10: Physical activity
Mark R. Beauchamp & Joseph J. O’Rourke
Chapter 11: Group-based physical activity participation
Mark W. Bruner, Luc J. Martin, M. Blair Evans & Alex J. Benson
Chapter 12: Youth development
Jamie B. Barker, S. Alexander Haslam, Katrien Fransen, Matthew J. Slater, Craig White & Niels Mertens
Chapter 13: Team identity development
Section 4: Physical and Psychological Health
Christopher Hartley, S. Alexander Haslam, Tim Rees & Pete Coffee
Chapter 14: Social support
Tegan Cruwys, Mark Stevens, Catherine Haslam, S. Alexander Haslam & Lisa Olive
Chapter 15: Mental health and resilience
Lisa M. O’Halloran & Catherine Haslam
Chapter 16: Career transitions
Section 5: Partisanship
Filip Boen, Daniel L. Wann, Iouri Bernache-Assollant, S. Alexander Haslam & Katrien Fransen
Chapter 17: Fan behaviour and loyalty
Clifford Stott
Chapter 18: Crowd behaviour and hooliganism
Section 6: Politics
Michael J. Platow & Diana M. Grace
Chapter 19: Comparing the social identity approach with self-determination theory
Stephen D. Reicher, Meredith Schertzinger & Fergus Neville
Chapter 20: The political psychology of sport

Coming up with new ways of thinking about the psychology of sport and exercise is a challenge that we should all embrace and be excited about. Social identity research provides an opportunity for us to do just this. This volume provides fascinating insights across a number of different areas which resonate strongly with my own professional journey within high-performance sport. Its currency lies in its ability to articulate a current and authentic approach which has been overlooked in the literature. This will be a game changer.


Ian Mitchell, PhD
The Football Association

I have loved sport all my life and written about it for much of my career. I didn’t think I could ever see it anew, from a fresh perspective. But this fascinating, compelling book has enabled me to do just that, giving a truly valuable insight not just into how sportsmen and women tick, but also into what drives and shapes the multitudes who lionise them.

Brian Viner
Award-winning sports writer and author of Ali, Pelé, Lillee and Me

This first-rate volume offers a new and comprehensive approach to sport. The social identity analysis it presents systematizes a wide range of topics and disparate findings under a single theoretical umbrella. This will re-invigorate thinking and provide a guiding light for creative research and practice across many fields. An amazing must-read text that speaks powerfully to the crucial role of social identity in all facets of sport.

Nyla R Branscombe
University of Kansas

Sport and exercise psychology likes its theories. Unfortunately, though, we have been a little too narrow in
developing, studying and applying these. For this reason, I’m delighted to see social identity theorising given such extensive and accessible coverage in this masterful
book. Through their focus on individuals as group members situated and acting within the social contexts of sport and exercise, the authors really move the field forward. This is vital if we are to properly understand and harness people’s involvement in this increasingly important domain. 

Stuart Biddle
University of Southern Queensland

Leans toward being a recruitment drive for future research with each chapter listing areas for future consideration. It is this contributory yet collaborative tone that sets this book apart from the pack and adds something special to the sport and exercise psychology space.

Toby Richards and Dr Sean Figgins
University of Chichester
The Psychologist

Providing the clearest framework to date on how best to utilise social identity approaches to sport and exercise, the book opens up a communication channel for scholars trained in sport and exercise and social psychologists to develop unique collaborations to further test social identity approaches, in as real-world a context as one could get.

Dr Gareth Hall
Senior Lecturer in Psychology, Aberystwyth University
The Psychologist

While a comprehensive and and interesting book, insufficiently relevant to students in course

Professor Wendy Hu
School of Medicine, Western Sydney University - Penrith Campus
September 23, 2021

A book for the HE, a knowledge base required before attempting this book.

Mrs Emma Marie Punter
Health and Social Care Department, East Coast College (Great Yarmouth)
January 24, 2021

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ISBN: 9781526488930

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