Rethinking the role of anxiety and self-efficacy in collective sports achievements
Keywords:self-efficacy, cognitive anxiety, competitive anxiety, collective sports, sports achievement
The influence of an athlete's anxiety and self-efficacy on sports achievement has been the subject of numerous research, but their relationship is not fully understood. In our research, we try to explore the influence of competitive anxiety and General Self-Efficacy on sports achievement. To explore that relationship, we examined 76 active athletes in collective sports. The following instruments were applied: Competitive State Anxiety Inventory, General Self-Efficacy Scale, and Questionnaire of Sports Achievement (ad hoc made instrument). The results show that Cognitive anxiety (a dimension of the Competitive anxiety) negatively correlates with sports achievement (r = -.38, p < .01) contrary to another dimension Somatic anxiety that does not show a significant association with achievement. However, the highest relationship is a positive correlation between General Self-Efficacy and sports achievement (r = .51, p < .01). In Regression analysis, significant predictors of sports achievement are General Self-Efficacy (3 = .39; p < .01) and Cognitive anxiety (3 = -.24; p < .05). Additional Bootstrapping analyses were conducted to examine the potential mediating effect of General Self-Efficacy in the relationship between Cognitive anxiety and sports achievement. We found a significant indirect effect of Cognitive anxiety on achievement only through General Self-Efficacy (b = -.30, CI [-.73, -.07]), while the direct effect is not significant once the mediator is introduced. In the reversed analyses, with Cognitive anxiety as a mediator, the mediation was not significant, which means that high anxiety reduces sports achievement only through undermining self-efficacy and not directly. The obtained result suggests that self-efficacy has the primary role in sports achievement. Consequently, we suggest that for improving sports achievement, psychological intervention should primarily focus on increasing self-efficacy.