The Dynamics of Patterns of Commitment in Sports

  • Dariusz Parzelski
  • Andrzej Nowak
Part of the Understanding Complex Systems book series (UCS)


Commitment is the major factor in sport; it combines in one variable the separate elements that influence the sporting result that is achieved. Based on sport psychology data and the dynamical Social Psychology theory of Vallacher and Nowak, it was assumed that there is a natural taxonomy relating the degree to which individuals practice sport to their degree of commitment. This research checks the concordance between the type of sport commitment assigned using dynamic measures and those assigned using classic methods of content analysis.

To determine the type of sport commitment both the Mouse Task in a dynamic paradigm and a method using competent judges assessment of participants’ statements describing typical daily activity schedules were used. All 67 participants were athletes taking part in sport competitions of different importance. Based on our assumption, four natural types of sport commitment were observed: ‘professionalism’, ‘amateurishness’, ‘fervor’ and ‘professional amateurishness’. We show that the computer mouse method captures information concerning this theoretical construct, which is not captured by the classic method of content analysis.


Life Domain Rest Time Mouse Cursor Sport Training Definition Task 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Sport Psychology DepartmentWarsaw School of Social Sciences and HumanitiesWarsawPoland
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyUniversity of WarsawWarsawPoland

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