Examining the big three of coping in adolescent athletes using network analysis

Joan Pons, Carme Viladrich, Yago Ramis


The study of the big three of coping (i.e., appraisals, emotions, and coping strategies) from factorial approach has been somewhat problematic in sport research. In this study, we had the aim to examine the relationships among the components of big three of coping using network analysis as an alternative approach to factorial approach. Using cognitive-motivational-relational theory as framework, we assessed appraisals, emotions and coping strategies in a sample of 276 synchronized swimming athletes (M = 14.63; SD = 2.01). Results present a network analysis of polychoric correlations among variables, showing three main groups of interrelations: (a) goal withdrawal zone include dejection, anger, venting of unpleasant emotions, disengagement, mental distraction, and social withdrawal; (b) mastery zone include primary and secondary appraisals, excitement, happiness, effort expenditure, mental imagery, and some thought control items; and (c) internal regulation zone include anxiety, logical analysis, some items of thought control, relaxation, and seeking social support. Results are congruent with Nicholls, Taylor, Carrol and Perry (2016) coping classifications; and show similarities with previous literature regarding the relations between appraisals, emotions, and coping.


Appraisal; Emotion; Coping; Adolescent athletes; Network Analysis

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