Framed in cognitive-motivational-relational theory of emotions (Lazarus, 1999), this study aimed to test how coping mediated the relationship between competitive anxiety and sport commitment in a sample of adolescent athletes. Five-hundred adolescents (M = 16.42; SD = 1.54) participated in our study. Participants completed competitive anxiety, coping, and sport commitment measures. We defined the measurement model using confirmatory factor analysis and exploratory structural equation modeling; and compared two different models of mediation (i.e., total and partial mediation) using structural equation modeling. Results favored partial mediation model where cognitive anxiety factors predicted sport commitment. Results from this model suggest direct and mediated structural relations between concepts. Somatic anxiety had a weak influence on sport commitment (total effects = 0.090 [-.131, .311]). Worry showed a positive influence on sport commitment (total effects = .375 [.262, .486]) through direct and mediated effects. Concentration disruption showed a negative impact on sport commitment (total effects = -.544 [-.724, -.363]) trough mediated effects only, showing a negative path on task-oriented coping and a positive path on disengagement-oriented coping. As a whole, our findings identify task coping efforts undertaken by adolescent athletes as a key element in the relationship between competitive anxiety and sport commitment. These findings provide preliminary evidence for the design of coping interventions in adolescents.
- Adaptation, Psychological/physiology
- Adolescent Behavior/physiology
- Competitive Behavior/physiology