Ecological validity in understanding sport performance: some problems of definition

DAVIDS, Keith (1988). Ecological validity in understanding sport performance: some problems of definition. Quest, 40 (2), 126-136.

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One of the most significant aspects of current sport psychology research is the trend toward developing the relationship between theoretical concepts and practical applications. There have been many recent calls for the development of specific experimental paradigms closely linked to critical features of movement control and social interaction within specific frames of reference such as competitive sport (e.g., Lee & Young, 1985; Martens, 1979). The concept of ecological validity has been proposed as a crucial element of this current research thrust, and this paper attempts to identify and define some of the more important criteria underpinning ecologically valid research in sport psychology. Vision and sport performance is used as an exemplary area of investigation in which problematic and specific issues are examined. The basis of this critique has important implications for other areas of interest in the application of the behavioral sciences to sport. It is concluded that much greater debate must be stimulated concerning this important methodological principle, and a preliminary definition is provided for this purpose as well as to aid in the process of research evaluation in sport psychology.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Centre for Sports Engineering Research
Identification Number:
Page Range: 126-136
Depositing User: Carole Harris
Date Deposited: 07 Oct 2013 09:49
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 19:30

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