Developing mental toughness: Attributional style retraining in rugby

Parkes, Jarred F. and Mallett, Clifford J. (2011) Developing mental toughness: Attributional style retraining in rugby. Sport Psychologist, 25 3: 269-287.

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Author Parkes, Jarred F.
Mallett, Clifford J.
Title Developing mental toughness: Attributional style retraining in rugby
Journal name Sport Psychologist   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0888-4781
Publication date 2011-09
Sub-type Article (original research)
Volume 25
Issue 3
Start page 269
End page 287
Total pages 19
Place of publication Champaign, IL, United States
Publisher Human Kinetics
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Abstract Recent research has identified optimism as an underlying mechanism of mental toughness (Coulter, Mallett, & Gucciardi, 2010). To further understand what elements of mental toughness can be developed, the current study evaluated the utility of an optimism intervention that employed cognitive-behavioral techniques (e.g., identifying automatic thoughts; testing accuracy of thoughts) to retrain attributional style. Seven male rugby players who were competing in first grade club rugby participated in the intervention. The effectiveness of the program was partially evaluated via self-reports of the Sport Attributional Style Scale (Hanrahan, Grove, & Hattie, 1989). Qualitative data were also collected via a focus group and semi-structured interviews. The quantitative results provided minimal support for the utility of the intervention; there was evidence to suggest participants’ attributions became more external for negative events. The qualitative data suggested that participants (a) developed greater resilience in the face of adversity, (b) were more confident in their sport, and (c) developed a more optimistic explanatory style for negative events. The qualitative findings support the utility of a cognitive-behavioral based attribution retraining intervention for developing optimism in rugby players. The data also supported the flexible use of external attributions for negative events.
Keyword Australian Football
Sport Psychology
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences Publications
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 5 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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