The purpose of this study was to test whether parental pressure affects the level of intrinsic motivation in junior tennis players. Junior tennis players (N=20; 10 male, 10 female) with a mean age of 12. 2 years (standard deviation = 0. 6 years). Subjects were presented with two short questionnaires one designed to measure the levels of intrinsic motivation and one designed to measure their perceived level of intrinsic motivation. A dependent Pearson product moment correlation coefficient test’s results revealed that there was a significance level of 0.

01. The results suggested that the higher the level of parental pressure the child felt the lower their level of intrinsic motivation would be. Implications include the need to warn parents that pressurising their children can make sport less enjoyable for them. Introduction Relationship between levels of intrinsic motivation and perception of parental pressure. On experiencing competition between individuals and noticing differences in their attitudes towards competition. Individuals tend to search for causes of this difference.

One approach to examining the “attitudes” individuals have towards competition and their motivation for competing is White’s (1959, Cited in Orbach, Singer & Price, 1999) effectance motivation theory. White suggested that ‘effectance motivation’ was based around the desire to feel competent; this impels individuals towards competetency. White also proposed that this desire to feel competent was innate. White’s model of effectance motivation that an individuals desire to be competent drives them into competing, and that their perceived success or failure if what drives them to compete again.

Reviews of sport-related research assessing ‘effectance motivation’ (e. g. Nicholls, 1984) developed his own theory which he called ‘achievement goal theory. ‘ This theory suggests that there are two basic concepts central to trying to explain motivation. Firstly ‘goals & cognition’ basically if we know what we want to achieve and we know how to achieve it then we are likely to act accordingly and be motivated to do so. Secondly ‘competence/success/achievement this is the aspect taken from White’s theory of effectance motivation, acknowledging a central construct of explaining motivation is a feeling of success.

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Nicholls integrated these two types of motivation in order to provide a theory that tries to explain motivation and achievement. Nicholls labelled both types, ‘Task involved’ is what he called motivation when the goal is to improve on your self and concentrate on your own performance. ‘Ego involved’ however is when individuals are motivated by the opportunity to demonstrate their superior ability. Deci and Ryan (1987, Exercise and Sport Science reviews) discusses intrinsic and extrinsic motivation in sport.

Intrinsic motivation is must like ‘task orientation’ in Nicholls’ theory. Intrinsic refers to internal sources of motivation, and engaging in behaviour purely for the pleasure, satisfaction, and intrinsic gains derived from undertaking that behaviour (e. g. , Deci & Ryan, 1985). Where as extrinsic motivation more similar to ‘ego orientation’ is defined as engaging in behaviour because it is a means to an end and not because the activity is inherently pleasurable in any way. This may be to avoid negative consequences or to gain positive consequences (e. g. , Deci, 1975).

The current study focuses on the levels of intrinsic motivation detected in a junior tennis team correlated with the perceived level of parental pressure on them. Each participant was asked to complete a questionnaire, this questionnaire measured the levels of intrinsic motivation in the individual and also the level of parental pressure they felt was placed on them. The purpose of this study therefore to measure intrinsic motivation for tennis as they completed 12 items of the Sport Motivation Scale (Pelletier et al. , 1995) that are specifically designed to assess intrinsic motivation.

Then to see whether this level is somehow linked with the level of parental pressure they felt was on them , to measure perceptions of parental pressure children completed five items from White et al. ‘s (1992) Parent Initiated Motivational Climate Questionnaire that were deemed to assess parental pressure. If there is a significant correlation between the two conditions it could be suggested that Parental pressure can affect the level of intrinsic motivation. The null hypothesis (H0) is that there will not be a significant correlation between the two.


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