Essential Reads

Hunting Bwana the Dentist

What fantasies move a man to ambush an elderly tourist lion?

Penalty Shoot-Outs Are Not a Lottery

Revealing the keys to success in soccer's do-or-die moment

Extraordinary Fun

Another way of playing

How Much Is Your Reputation Really Worth?

New research reveals when your reputation matters, and when it doesn’t.

Recent Posts on Sport and Competition

Hunting Bwana the Dentist

By Kirby Farrell Ph.D. on July 29, 2015 in A Swim in Denial
What would motivate a dentist to spend $55,000 to kill an elderly tourist lion? The answer takes us on a psychological safari looking at recent themes in American life that incite and reward fantasies of the mighty hunter.

How to Stop Choking Under Pressure

By Jonathan Fader Ph.D. on July 29, 2015 in The New You
Every athlete in the world, at one time or another, has choked under pressure. Sometimes, athletes are able to bounce back. Other times, a botched play can haunt an athlete for the rest of his or her career.

Don't Look Directly At The Problem

By E. Paul Zehr Ph.D. on July 27, 2015 in Black Belt Brain
Our species has some special features but people are animals too. In the motor system, we monitor and superimpose on top of many base-level responses our intentions and wishes. By extension, when we are dealing with an issue or a problem, perhaps the best course of action is to not try and directly force a solution and instead allow the best course of action to emerge.

Memory, Body Language and Personality in Soccer

By Ben Lyttleton on July 27, 2015 in Twelve Yards
USA lost its Gold Cup soccer play-off to Panama on penalties - but could the team have avoided defeat?

A Crash Course on Gender Differences - Session 10

By Eyal Winter on July 25, 2015 in Feeling Smart
On Sex, Procreation and Sperm Compitition: How do Human Beings Differ from Animals.

Breaking The Bystander Effect in Sports Concussions

By Harry Kerasidis M.D. on July 24, 2015 in Brain Trauma
We witness concussions frequently, yet from the sidelines and stands, we may gasp or cringe. But we definitely won't do or say anything, right? It's the dreaded "Bystander Effect," that has people stunned still when someone yells, "call 911!" However, I propose every youth sports team in the US empower a "Concussion Coordinator" to solve this problem.

Penalty Shoot-Outs Are Not a Lottery

By Ben Lyttleton on July 23, 2015 in Twelve Yards
Why scoring a penalty-kick in soccer is more about the mind than the foot

The ‘Magic Potion’ of Team Chemistry

By Chester S Spell Ph.D. on July 21, 2015 in Team Spirit
Different mixes for different teams? Research suggests that what’s good for chemistry in management teams might not be true for teams in other types of work.

Blessings

By Bernard L. De Koven on July 21, 2015 in On Having Fun
A game for elders of any age

The Courage of a Surfer

By Michael W Austin on July 20, 2015 in Ethics for Everyone
A lesson about courage from a man who swam towards a shark.

Tribes Always Triumph

By Paddy Steinfort on July 19, 2015 in Quick Wins
In adversity, tribes support each other in many ways - some of which research has shown increase willpower and resilience

Coliberation

By Bernard L. De Koven on July 19, 2015 in On Having Fun
Playing well together

Fixing Tiger Woods' Trainwreck

Maybe instead of trying to dominate the world as he one could, Tiger could invoke the image of his father a la Field of Dreams to "have a catch" with him as he's on the course.

The Espy Award

I was disgusted after reading so many ignorant and hateful comments on social media towards Caitlyn Jenner specifically, and transgender people generally. I learned that many people were really upset that Caitlyn Jenner won the Arthur Ashe Courage Award, particularly over Lauren Hill, who was a college basketball player who died a few months ago of brain cancer.

Top 5 Signs That Women Are Converging With Men

By Nigel Barber Ph.D. on July 16, 2015 in The Human Beast
Fairly rigid gender divisions of the past are giving way to a much more equal relationship. Women are begin to act, and feel more like men even as men's actions and sensibilities are converging with women What are the unmistakable signs that women are becoming more like men?

10 Lessons I Learned from Little League Baseball

By Kate Roberts Ph.D. on July 15, 2015 in Savvy Parenting
Most baseball players strike out 7 of 10 times at bat. Baseball is great preparation for achieving life goals in that it requires perseverance, commitment, determination and frustration tolerance in order to be a great player.Baseball is fantastic way to learn those life skills while having fun.

Rich Roll’s Extreme Flow

By Michael Friedman Ph.D. on July 15, 2015 in Brick by Brick
Rich Roll, an ultra-endurance athlete, shares how we do not need to do "everything in moderation" in order to have balanced life. In fact, for many of us, the balance is in the “extreme.

Extraordinary Fun

By Bernard L. De Koven on July 13, 2015 in On Having Fun
There are games we play just for fun. We laugh together. We become unpredictable, unpackaged, opened to an experience that is, when you think about it, when you compare it to our national pastimes, truly extraordinary.

The Psychology of Sports Fandom

Sports fan allegiances illustrate basic properties of the self, including bolstering our self-esteem, improving our belongingness with others, and justifying our belief systems. These processes reflect broader human motives that can explain a considerable amount of behavior, ranging from nationalism to vigorously defending economic and religious systems.

What Are the Qualities of Competent Coaches?

“A coach is someone who can give correction without causing resentment.” John Wooden, legendary UCLA basketball coach

How Much Is Your Reputation Really Worth?

By Mark Travers Ph.D. on July 09, 2015 in Social Instincts
New research explores when your reputation matters ...and when it doesn’t.

Fraudulent Draft Day Fantasies

The lights of the NHL shine bright on draft night and they can easily blind optimal motivation. Sometimes dreams can be so vivid and so emotionally sustaining they leave an individual neglecting to attend to important initiatives and hurdles during the journey.

Is Your “Game Over” or “Job Over?”

Is Your Job Over or Is Your Game Over: learn from the pros.

Women’s World Cup Win: Contributions to Tween Self-Esteem

Each of these players tells a unique story. What bonds them all together is their love of soccer and their desire to be the best. Role models such as the USA Women’s National Soccer team are important for our tweens and teens. Their accomplishments as individuals, and of course, their victory as a team model important lessons.

The Power of Questioning in Sport Coaching

The coaching process continues to evolve. It appears that coaches are increasingly incorporating questioning into their training sessions. This article examines some of the potential benefits of such an approach.

The Psychological Transition From College to Pro Sports

Athletes moving into professional sports are often not prepared for the psychological challenges that lie ahead of them. If this transition is not dealt with properly, the consequences can be detrimental in the long run.

How Does Scent Drive Human Behavior?

Researchers have identified how specific scents can motivate your decision making.

A Workover: Should You Follow Your Passion?

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on June 29, 2015 in How To Do Life
Advice I gave to a caller to my NPR-San Francisco radio program.

Born in the USA

When the 4th of July comes around, do you find yourself getting all patriotic? That’s OK – it’s part of our evolved coalitional psychology. Read on to find out why!

Physically Active Children Grow Up to Be Healthier Adults

Why are children who exercise regularly more likely to remain healthy and fit into adulthood?