Academic journal article Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport

Factors Important in Athletic Talent Development for Female Intercollegiate Athletes: Scale Development and Initial Validation

Academic journal article Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport

Factors Important in Athletic Talent Development for Female Intercollegiate Athletes: Scale Development and Initial Validation

Article excerpt

Using established theoretical frameworks in talent development a survey was developed to better understand what factors female athletes identify as important in the development of their athletic talent. Exploratory factor analysis of this survey yields a six factor's solution accounting for 66% of the variance. The six factors were: (a) performance when stressed/tired, (b) teammate support (c) sport importance, (d) sport training support, (e) perceptions of body, and (f) performance when sick/injured. The second phase of this project used confirmatory factor analysis to better understand if this six factor solution could reliably predict factors identified as important to female athletes in the development of their athletic talent. Data from a sample of 377 female athletes competing at major Division IA universities (N = 377), representing basketball (n = 16), field hockey (n = 20), golf (n = 22), soccer (n = 44), softball (n = 37), swimming (n = 76), tennis (n = 22), track and field (n = 112), and volleyball (n = 28) was used in this analysis. Three models were fit to the data: (a) one first-order factor with all items loaded on a single factor, (b) a multidimensional representation of talent development using six first-order factors in which each item was allowed to load on only one factor (six factors listed above) with correlations between the six factors freely estimated, and (c) one higher order factor in which correlations between two factors (performance when sick/injured and performance when stressed/tired) were hypothesized to reflect one higher order factor representing performance challenges within talent development. …

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