Ego depletion and attention regulation under pressure: Is a temporary loss of self-control strength indeed related to impaired attention regulation?

Oudejans, Raoul; Zwemmer, Kristiaan; Bertrams, Alex; Englert, Chris (15 July 2015). Ego depletion and attention regulation under pressure: Is a temporary loss of self-control strength indeed related to impaired attention regulation? (Unpublished). In: 14th European Congress of Sport Psychology of the European Federation of Sport Psychology (FEPSAC) - Sport psychology-theories and applications for performance, health and humanity. Bern. 14.-19.07.2015.

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In the present study we investigated whether ego depletion negatively affects attention regulation under pressure in sports by assessing participants’ dart throwing performance and accompanying gaze behavior. According to the strength model of self-control the most important aspect of self-control is attention regulation (Schmeichel & Baumeister, 2010). As higher levels of state anxiety are associated with impaired attention regulation (Nieuwenhuys & Oudejans, 2012) we chose a mixed design with ego depletion (yes vs. no) as between-subjects and anxiety level (high vs. low) as within-subjects factor. A total of 28 right-handed students participated in our study (Mage = 23.4, SDage = 2.5; 10 female; no professional dart experience). Participants performed a perceptual-motor task requiring selective attention, namely, dart throwing. The task was performed while participants were positioned high and low on a climbing wall (i.e., with high and low levels of anxiety). In line with our expectations, a mixed-design ANOVA revealed that depleted participants in the high anxiety condition performed worse (p < .001) and displayed a shorter final fixation on bull’s eye (p < .01) than in the low anxiety condition, demonstrating that when one is depleted attention regulation under pressure cannot be maintained. This is the first study that directly supports the general assumption that ego depletion is a major factor in influencing attention regulation under pressure.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)

Division/Institute:

07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Education > Educational Psychology
07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Education

UniBE Contributor:

Bertrams, Alexander Gregor and Englert, Christoph

Subjects:

300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 370 Education

Language:

English

Submitter:

Alexander Gregor Bertrams-Pencik

Date Deposited:

29 Jul 2015 09:43

Last Modified:

19 Jul 2018 11:55

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/70578

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