WHAT MOTIVATES ATHLETES?

WHO, WHAT, WHEN AND WHERE MOTIVATES ATHLETES ?

There are two fundamental types of Motivation.
• Positive Motivation
• Negative Motivation

Positive Motivation is the preferred method of Psychology. Positive Motivation enhances the participation in sport because it encourages playing for the Love of the Game. Pleasure is the fundamental emotional driving force.

Negative Motivation is the most foul and abusive method. of Psychology. It enforces participation in sport with the fear emotion, The driving force is fear for survival and fear of not making the team and returning to poor life. Negative Motivation is characteristic of the old fashioned Bully-Boy, Plowline Coach.

THE 4 R’s OF COACHING CONDUCT are tools for Positive Motivation. They foster the Play of Sport for Love of the Game. See the 4 R’s of Coaching this web site
http://www.cappaa.com/4-rs-of-coaching

“The term affective process should be used broadly to include moods, sentiments, simple feelings of pleasantness and unpleasantness, interesting activities, etc. That emotion should be employed specifically to designate that variety of affective process which is characterized by acute upset.

Of great practical importance in the definition of emotion is the distinction between a contemporary event revealed in conscious experience and behavior and bodily change, on the one hand, and an assumed disorganization within the subject, on the other hand.

An acute upset, however, of itself is not a motive… An emotion is an acute affective disturbance within the individual as a whole, arising from the psychological situation, and manifest in conscious experience, behavior, and especially through bodily changes which are regulated by the autonomic nervous system.”

Dr. Young proposes that emotions designate an event or occurrence, an acute upset, while affect be reserved for persistent states.” 126

An acute upset for an Athlete is a transformation, conversion, or alteration of the Athlete’s current situation, state of affairs, conditions or circumstances.

Playing out of Fear is playing in response to threats and dangers from a coach. That type fear is connected to pain. Fear is a survival mechanism and results because of a specific, strong, negative stimulus, namely negative motivation.

Some of the fears threatened by Plowline Coaches are the fear of the coach, fear of God, fear of being called a quitter, fear of returning to poverty, fear of returning to the cotton fields and plowing with the mules, fear of returning to chopping up “pup wood” (Bull Cyclone Sullivan), fear of disappointing father, family, and community, fear of disappointing the high school coach and school, and the fear of becoming shunned and ostracized by their hometown community, and fear of the unknown.

Southern football coaches were particularly notorious for coaching out of those fears. This is outdated and behind the times.

“Harriett Woods (June 2, 1927–February 8, 2007) was an American politician and activist, a two-time Democratic nominee for the United States Senate from Missouri, and a former Lieutenant Governor of Missouri. She was Missouri’s first and so far only female Lieutenant Governor.” [Wikipedia]

“In the end, it’s extra effort that separates a winner from second place. But
winning takes a lot more than that, too. It starts with complete command of the
fundamentals. Then it takes desire, determination, discipline, and self-sacrifice.
And finally, it takes a great deal of love, fairness and respect for your fellow man.”

Put all these together, and even if you don’t win, how can you lose?”- Jesse Owens

“James Cleveland “Jesse” Owens (September 12, 1913 – March 31, 1980) was an American track and field athlete. He participated in the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, Germany, where he achieved international fame by winning four gold medals: one each in the 100 metres, the 200 metres, the long jump, and as part of the 4×100 meter relay team.”

“In 1936, Owens arrived in Berlin to compete for the United States in the Summer Olympics. Adolf Hitler was using the games to show the world a resurgent Nazi Germany. He and other government officials had high hopes German athletes would dominate the games with victories (the German athletes achieved a top of the table medal haul).

Meanwhile, Nazi propaganda promoted concepts of “Aryan racial superiority” and depicted ethnic Africans as inferior. Owens surprised many and showed the fallacies of racial supremacy by winning four gold medals.” [Wikipedia]

“Good coaches teach respect for the opposition, love of competition, the value of trying your best, and how to win and lose graciously.” – Brooks Clark

Brooks Clark, a veteran youth coach in Tennessee and former writer for Sports Illustrated, says, “Yelling at referees is like yelling at waiters…they can’t yell back, and they’re paid to take it. Its really about development for all of us, not just our kids.“

Clark mentioned David Cutcliffe, who coached both Eli and Peyton Manning in college, about the role his father, NFL legend Archie Manning, played in their development. “He’s the parent who knew the most, and said the least. Silence sometimes teaches more than words.”

Rick Telanders’s book, The Hundred Yard Lie, was originally published in 1989 and again in 1996. Many in sports say its message is applicable today. The message is that “college football is a corrupt system that exploits players in a money-making endeavor that has no relationship to the educational process. That corruption extends to professional football coaching”. Winning-at-all-costs can sometimes in some situations be profitable.

Win-at-all-cost coaching was infectious in the Northern U.S. From the North came Vince Lombardi who was born in Brooklyn, New York. Lombardi became famous while coaching the NFL Green Bay Packers. His famous quote was, “winning isn’t everything, its the only thing.”

“He has corrupted football coaching more than any other man before or since. Because he won games and bullied his players in a way that quite literally dehumanized them. He opened the door for all kinds of abuses in the name of winning. Telander said, “I have had several Lombardi-type coaches in my own sporting career, and not just in football, and I strongly believe they did more damage to me and my teammates than they had any right to.

”The boot camp mentality of football practices only appears to be less obvious, but is still present everywhere. Closed practices are the halmark of Negative Motivation.

Lombardi was an assistant’ at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. His coaching style was greatly influenced by Colonel Red Blaik, the head coach. Lombardi was offensive line coach. Blaik’s demanded football precise execution.

That would become a hallmark of Lombardi’s NFL teams. Lombardi coached at West Point for five seasons, with varying results. Lombardi was known for his philosophy and motivational skills. Lombardi’s speeches are often quoted today. He is well known as being totally committed to winning. Lombardi had a 105-35-6 record as head coach and he never had a losing season. His Packers recorded three consecutive NFL championships in 1965, 1966, and 1967; winning the first two Super Bowls. Lombardi died at age 57 of intestinal cancer.

“Coaches who can outline plays on a black board are a dime a dozen. The ones who win get inside their player and motivate” Lombardi said. Bullying, abusive coaches and athletes, who respond to bullying, abusive behaviors, are attracted to each other on the professional sport level. After all, choosing the profession of football for your income is different than a student athlete who will not work as an athlete all of his or her lifetime.

Coaches, who get inside their players heads and motivate them with trust and lead them as a mentor, are cerebral coaches. That is appealing to the student athlete.
The student athlete values x’s and o’s. From their cerebrum, blackboards and power points they will learn to earn their living.

The Southern Plowline Abusive Coach appears to take root from Bull Cyclone Sullivan and Bear Bryant. Their Athlete Motivation is worthy study.

Motivation was self examined by Bear Bryant. He wondered about the tactics he used to motivate his own players after becoming a football coach. And he wondered about what motivated himself. He believed he was motivated out of the fear of returning to the hard times he had growing up in Moro Bottom, and later in Fordyce, Arkansas. Bear Bryant played and coached out of fear, not the love of the game.
“One of the things that motivated me, that fear of going back to plowing and driving those mules and chopping cotton for 50 cents a day.” Holding onto that Plowline was his destiny and fortune.

Coach Bull Cyclone Sullivan, East Mississippi, said football players play for one of two reasons. They play out of fear of they play for the love of the game. Bear Bryant called Bull Cyclone the “toughest coach ever”.

Bear Bryant also traveled with his momma on a wagon peddling goods. His childhood was tough. His older brothers were plow boys and hooked up the mules and used plowline to guide the mules when croppers, who got stuck up in the mud when it rained, needed help. The Bear hated it and hated every minute of that life.

His parents were very religious and strict disciplinarians. They were fundamentalists. He got whipped a lot at home and in school as a youngster. Bryant was a prankster and a disciplinary problem. He said his parents never spared the rod. Was he severely abused as a child? Did he abuse and bully because of his abuse? That is the usual abusive scenario. The abused abuse.

Bryant wasn’t very good at basketball and knew very little about football. He was always the last one picked when the teams were being chosen. He was on the bottom of the playground hierarchy.

Bryant wasn’t a good student and was very lazy in school. He made up for it by getting into many fights. If you can’t beat them, hurt them. He was the last one anyone would think would go to college and get a degree. People who knew him didn’t think he would stick it out in college. He was motivated out of his own hard times and parental abuse with a lack of athletic ability and studious dedication . He became a bully boy abuser in his own right. He feared many circumstances. Bear didn’t block his fears, tackle his problems or keep his feet moving when the going got tough. He just became a bully.

Bryant thought about how much a man could influence another person. He relied on Coach Thomas and Coach Crisp in later years for advice. He believed you surround yourself with good people who can help you. Thomas and Crisp weren’t good at football technique, but knew what it took to win. They were motivators and win-at-all-cost motivators. Bryant described himself as a field coach and a “motivator” who didn’t know much about x’s and o’s on the chalk board. Bryant majored in physical education but “didn’t study anything”. He never had and never did.

Coach Thomas’ favorite punishment was to have Bryant and his teammates run laps at 4:00 AM. He would make them run 100 laps or pack up and leave the team. Bryant was proud of playing too soon after a fractured tibia in his leg. Playing hurt was his red badge of courage. Bryant was cut out of the same cloth as Bull Cyclone Sullivan, Coach Thomas and Coach Crisp. Charlie Bradshaw, when he assumed the head coach position at the University of Kentucky in 1962 was cut from the same mold, but he was the most abusive of abusive coaches. He was a tyrant.

Bryant learned form coach Bobby Dodd at Georgia Tech. “I believe that football can teach you to sacrifice, to discipline yourself. Bobby Dodd had been quoted as saying some super-tough coaches have found they can take a group of “lesser boys”, an inferior team, and beat a superior team by super-tough conditioning and fear. Bryant and Dodd were harsh contrasts.

Bear Bryant said Dodd was right about that and Bryant was flattered “if I fall in that category”. Some teams like Georgia Tech get all those big, fine, wonderful student athletes, and the boys play about 75%. Teams that live tough and play tough and are dedicated beat their fannies seven out of nine times, which our boys have done to Georgia Tech. On examination, Bryant appeared envious of the student athlete he had never become. Regarding the fear and abuse, “Has anybody thought to ask the boys if it was worth it?

Bryant said, “I’ve tried to teach sacrifice and discipline to my coaches and my boys, and there were times I went too far and asked too much and took out my mistakes on them. I’ve made mistakes, a lot of stupid mistakes. I know that I lost games by overworking my teams, and I lost some good boys by pushing them too far, or being pigheaded.”

“I’m older now, and not as dumb, I hope, and some things I would do differently because I know better, but that doesn’t change my mind about the value of hard work.”

Everyone agrees with the hard work that is necessary to become successful. Tts the “Hard Headed” that we disagree.

In 1961, the year Alabama won the first of Bear Bryant’s national championships, Bill Curry was a red shirt sophomore on a good Georgia Tech team that included eight or 10 future NFL players.

Bear Bryant could hold a grudge but he could also forgive and forget. Curry said, we were coming off a painful loss to the Crimson Tide the previous year and wanted to prove we could whip them in their own backyard. We thought we could spoil their ranking and take their place as the dominant team in the Southeastern Conference, where Tech played until 1963.

Curry said we were coached by our own living legend, “The Gray Fox”, Bobby Dodd. He and Coach Bryant were longtime friends, and the Alabama coach was fond of saying, “When I look across the field on game day I would rather see anybody other than that damn Dodd. He can beat you with his brain.”

Coach Dodd was a General Bob Neyland disciple and understood the wisdom of ball security, field position, and error-free football better than anyone else in his era.
Coach Dodd also made public reference to the fact that he wanted his boys to have fun playing football and refused to allow us to scrimmage during the season. Rival coaches found this appalling and said so. In that era football was supposed to be a daily gut check, not fun. Not so with Coach Bobby Dodd.

Heart and desire from the love of the game come from within. Rules are taught and skills developed but the will to win comes from deep inside.

The will to win is nurtured by a Credible Mentor Coach. Contrast the difference in Coach Vince Lombardi a “super tough” hard-nosed Plowline Coach who said : Winning is not everything, winning is the only thing. Winning at all cost is not everything in amateur athletics. Compare Lombardi to Mentor Coach John Calipari who said: Winning is not everything, the will to win, because of the love of the game, is everything. Mentoring the will to win requires applying the 4 R’s of coaching.

Positive Emotions Drive Motivation. Keys to producing positive emotions are finding inspirational devices that make the athlete euphoric, exhilarated and confident about their athletic performance. Inspirational signals are music, phrases, mottos, recordings and photographs. An inspirational quote or picture can be placed in plane view, easy to see. Practice and experience the emotions the signals create within. These signals will inspire and motivate the athlete to continue to work hard toward their goals.

REFERENCES:
Coach Paul ‘Bear’ Bryant: The Early Years By Cecil Hurt | Sports Editor Published: Tidesports.com, Saturday, October 3, 2009 at 3:30 a.m.
It’s all about Rick: From Telander to Neuheisel Is college football corrupt? By: Richard Linde, Updated 9 October 2003, 3 February 2008
The NCAA News By Gary K. Johnson
Popularity of Football newsdial.com
American Football Gaining International Popularity Footballorbust.com
A Longitudinal and Retrospective Study of The Impact of Coaching Behaviors on the 1961-1962 University of Kentucky Football Wildcats, Kay Collier McLaughlin, Ph.D., Micheal B. Minix Sr. M.D., Twila Minix, R.N., Jim Overman, Scott Brogdon
KENTUCKY FOOTBALL ABUSE STUDY Team Study Results The 1961-1962 University of Kentucky Football Freshman Micheal B. Minix, Sr., M.D.
http://www.cappaa.com/kentucky-football-abuse-study-1962
Coakley, Jay J. (1982) Sport in Society, Issues and Controversies (Second Edition). St. Louis: C.V. Mosby Company.
Debendotte, Valerie. (1988, March) Spectator Violence at Sports Events: What Keeps Enthusiastic Fans in Bounds? The Physician and Sportsmedicine, 16 (4) 203-11. EJ 372 800.
Holding a grudge is football tradition October 21, 2004 By Bill Curry Special to ESPN.com Archive
Malpractice at Practice: Should NCAA Coaches Be Liable For Negligence? Loyola of Los Angles Entertainment Law Review
[vol. 22: 613]
When does the language used rise to Verbal Abuse ?
Redmen – Unofficial site of St. John’s University BY TOM ROCK
STAFF WRITER (Newsday) February 27, 2005
SPORTS: WHEN WINNING IS THE ONLY THING,
CAN VIOLENCE BE FAR AWAY? Canadian Centres for
Teaching Peace Box 70 Okotoks, AB CANADA T1A 1S4
Psychology Today, The Power of Prime The cluttered mind uncluttered. by Jim Taylor, Ph.D.
brainyquote.com – Vince Lomabrdi quotes
Wikipedia encyclopedia

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