Psychophysiological Assessment and Biofeedback

Applications for Athletes in Closed-Skill Sports
  • Daniel M. Landers


One of the major problems of interest to sport psychologists has been the study of stress responses of athletes to competition. Over the years, many theories and hypotheses have been advanced to explain this relationship. For example, the popular inverted-U hypothesis between arousal and performance predicts that performance will be best when arousal for a given individual on a particular task is at a moderate level. Unfortunately, this and other theories/hypotheses have been tested primarily by examining performance outcome measures (such as an average performance score or win/loss record). Few research studies have been designed to measure physiological arousal reactions continually while subjects are performing. If an attempt has been made to measure arousal at all, it usually consisted of a discrete physiological measure (i.e., a stethoscope measure of heart rate or Palmar Sweat Index) or a global paper—pencil measure of arousal (e.g., STAI or SCAT). Without some measure of an intervening process to describe the physiological and behavioral manifestations of arousal that ultimately affects performance, limited understanding would be gained upon which to base biofeedback or other cognitive—behavioral strategies.


Cardiac Cycle Fine Tuning Breathing Pattern Galvanic Skin Response Biofeedback Training 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniel M. Landers
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Health and Physical Education, Exercise and Sport Research InstituteArizona State UniversityTempeUSA

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