MTOUGH researcher Dr Adam Coussens offers a useful overview of the recent conference in Nottingham, UK.
As an academic I always look forward to attending research conferences, especially my first BASES/FEPSAC conference. It provided an excellent opportunity to engage with fellow researchers, present my own research through a poster presentation, and listen to the latest research and applied consultancy.
Overall, the standard of research and presentations was to a very high level, and I will just draw on a couple of examples that was of particular interest to our own MTOUGH research group. Prof. Paul Wylleman and Dr Kristoffer Henriksen provided a fascinating insight into the different performance contexts and sport psychology support for athletes during the Rio, 2016, Olympic Games. Dr Henriksen encouraged regular meetings with his athletes, and encouraged them to focus on their values and identity to help endure difficult times. I personally felt this was an excellent example of how we can support athletes, whilst also challenging them.
Dr Jennifer Cumming and Dr Camilla Knight discussed strength-based approaches when working with young people. In a 3rd year module I lead, Applied Sport and Exercise Psychology, I introduce students to sport psychology consultancy approaches, and this presentation provided an excellent insight into strength-based mental skills training. It highlighted practical solutions for working directly with clients, and introduced some novel methods in which strengths of an individual can be brought to the forefront, rather than instinctively trying to ‘fix a problem’.
I presented a poster outlining a research project carried out by Lewis King, and I, exploring athletes’ perceptions of group flow and team performance. Following some useful questions and discussions it appears that a range of researchers and coaches are interested in the process of flow. It provided me with a better understanding of this research area, and qualitative research more generally.
I look forward to attending future BASES and FEPSAC events!
Dr Adam Coussens,
Senior Lecturer in Sport Psychology,
MTOUGH Research Group.
University of Lincoln