The main topic of research is Sport Psychological: An Integrated Approach to Issues Related to Injury in Athletes and their Responses to Cognitive Behavioral Intervention. This paper seeks to develop a guide for research on the topic to be undertaken. It explores the various activities that will need to be undertaken so as to ensure that the research is carried out smoothly.
The purpose of this study is twofold; to find out what factors contribute to injuries in athletes and secondly, the major responses to cognitive behavior responses. The study will look at whether cognitive behavior interventions are helpful for the athletes and whether they can help them to avoid or deal with their injuries and how they do so.
This outlines clearly the methods and techniques that the researcher intends to use in carrying out the study (Wagman, & Khelifa, 1993). It involves the various experimental methods in carrying out research and gathering information. This design is a case study of the athletes drawn from top five sports within York University. A case study is an in depth investigation of a single group, person, event or community (Tracey, 2003). The study will include twenty students and five coaches whose activities will be studied for a three month period. The case study will aim at finding out more about athletes’ injuries and their response to cognitive behavior interventions. It will utilize various types of data and hence different data collection methods such as use of questionnaires and personal interviews. In addition, a clearly set out set of procedures will be followed in carrying out the case study.
This cites the various methods and practices that will be employed in carrying out the case study and will include other subcomponents such as;
This case study on athletes from York University will be undertaken for a period of three months beginning from fall this year. This period is aimed to be during the academic semester when most of the sports are in season and the athletes are in full raining all the time. This is seen as the best time to get the most information on athletes’ injuries and their response to cognitive behavior interventions since these are likely to be practically happening. By the end of the semester, the study should be in a position to draw conclusions on the findings, answer the research questions and prove the hypothesis.
The case study will be limited in the following ways
- The time period may not be adequate to gauge all the aspects of the study
- The findings of the study cannot be generalized
- The study may lack rigor due to the use of mainly qualitative data which is unspecific.
The type of data to be collected and used in the case study will be both qualitative and quantitative data. Qualitative data will include data collected from personal experiences such as ways that the athletes keep away from injuries and how they deal with the injuries. In addition, it will include information from coaches and other relevant stakeholders such as the medical attendants, friends and family. Quantitative data will also be used such as the number of times the athlete has been injured. The use of both types of data will be crucial in adequately informing the study of the issues on the ground and improving the accuracy and reliability of the case study. Both these types of data will be analyzed and utilized in drawing the study conclusion.
Sampling is important for any research to be successful and greatly determines the integrity of the case study. The sampling method chose should produce sample population that is well representative of the population and bound to give the best results (Grindstaff, Wrisberg, & Ross, 2010). The case study shall make use of stratified sampling. The sample population will be drawn from five sports teams within York University and will include four players from each sport. The sports include; football, baseball, running, basketball and hockey. Besides the four players, a coach from each team is included in the study. The choice of the players will be strategic to include two players who have an experience with injuries and two who have not suffered injuries. These is aimed at giving a holistic approach to the study and give an insight as to how the athletes deal with injuries at the same time how they avoid these injuries. Hence the total sample size will be twenty five people. This was settled on as it is a good number to represent the population yet a good size to concentrate on and achieve the best results.
Various data collection methods will be employed to get useful and relevant information for the case study. One of these methods will include the use of observation to help the researcher understand what the athletes have to go through such as daily exercise routines, diets, and medical checkups among others. These will give the researcher a first-hand experience of the athletes’ lives and preparedness towards injury. It is also crucial in understanding what the injured athletes go through as well as their modes of treatment. In addition to this, the case study will utilize semi structured questionnaires that will help to gather data and necessary information about athlete injuries such as from the relevant medical personnel, psychologists, family and friends who experience the athletes’ pain and go through the injury phase with them. Another data collection method to be used is personal interviews with the athletes (Brewer, 2003). This will yield useful information on the athletes’ perspective and give insight to their personal experience with injuries and whether cognitive behavior interventions used were or have been helpful to them.
Additional information for this case study will be literature and desktop research and review on the available information and other case studies undertaken on similar topics. This will further inform the case study.
The following research questions were employed for this study. These include;
- What are the common factors leading to injuries in athletes?
- What measures do athletes and coaches take to prevent these injuries?
- How do the athletes deal with the injuries?
- Are cognitive behavior intervention used in helping athletes?
- How efficient are these cognitive behavior interventions?
- How do the athletes respond to these cognitive behaviors?
The null hypothesis for the case study will be: the use of cognitive behavior interventions causes little or no response to the injured athletes.
This will be tested against the following positive hypothesis;
- The athletes will positively respond to the use of cognitive behavior interventions
- The use of cognitive behavior interventions will be efficient in managing athletes’ injuries.
The procedure for the case study will be systematic to ensure smooth flow of study activities. The study process will start with planning of the study that includes who to partner with as well as the relevant stakeholders as per the study scope. This will also include what instruments and sample size to use in the study. Once the planning is complete, data collection will e undertaken using the relevant and identified data collection methods and instruments. This step is crucial and will need to be undertaken with due care to ensure that the data collected is correct and relevant. Once data is collected it needs to be analyzed to give forth information that can be easily understood and that is important for coming up with the study findings. After data analysis, it is important to represent the data in forms that are easy to understand for most people. These include graphs, histograms and other data representation tools. The study can now be concluded by coming up with and disseminating the findings of the study to the relevant recipients. This can be put in the form of a report.
There is need to develop the instruments that will be used in the case study such as designing of semi structured questionnaires and interview guides for the one on one interviews. These instruments must show consistency and should be developed in such a manner that allows for the collection of the relevant data from the participants of the study. The developed instruments should be easy to use and understand for the interviewer and the interviewee.
The instruments will be structured in such a way that increases reliability of the data as being true (Birrer, Rothlin, & Morgan, 2012). In addition, there is need to ensure that rules and guidelines for employing these instruments are set out to ensure consistency. Some of the guidelines will include;
- How to set up the interviews with the various stakeholders
- Informing the study participants on the basis of the study and getting their consent
- How to undertake the interview that is, note taking, audiotaping etc
- How to conclude the interview
- Measures to undertake after the interview such as follow up is on clarity among others.
In this study, the key instruments to be used include semi structured questionnaires that are to developed and interview guidelines to help in asking relevant questions. Other instruments will include video cameras and audiotapes as well as notebooks for undertaking notes. The instruments to be used in the case study will be tested prior to the onset of the data collection exercise to ensure that they are efficient. Any necessary modifications will be made then to avoid collecting ambiguous data or irrelevant data.
Once all the necessary data has been collected, data analysis will be undertaken in three steps. The first step will be the preparation of data which involves cleaning as well as organizing of the raw data such as through sorting it into easy to identify clusters or programs. The data is input into the computer and checked for accuracy and databases are developed. This prepares the data for use with any other variable.
This is followed by description of the data. Basic features of the data in the study will be described and simple summaries developed about the data. Graphics can also be used to simply describe the data especially for the quantitative data. Qualitative data can be simply described for what it is. In the data description stage, tables and charts can e used to represent voluminous data in a shorter order.
The next step in data analysis will include testing of hypothesis and models what is commonly referred to as inferential statistics. Various methods can be used in the analysis although it will majorly fall on the general linear model that includes the T-test model.
It is expected that the use of cognitive behavior interventions will play a great role in the athletes’ ability to deal with injuries (Alfermanna, Geislerb, & Okadec, 2012). It is believed that the use of cognitive behavior interventions is of key importance in reducing stress and improving performance (Neila, Hantona, & Mellalieu, 2012). Cognitive behavior interventions are also seen as of importance while addressing the athletes’ capability and hence reducing chances of him/her getting unnecessary injuries (Barkera, Mellalieub, McCarthyc, et al, 2012). Other factors expected to be included in the research findings is the role of training and diet in the prevention of athlete injuries (Walker, Thatcher, & Lavallee, 2007). However, it is also expected that a small number of the case study participants will not find the use of cognitive behavior interventions very efficient and beneficial.
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