The Importance Of High Emotional Intelligence In Sports

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The psychological skills considered to be linked to EI and believed to be learned through sporting experience (e.g. stress control, impulse control, emotional self-awareness and empathy) not only benefit individuals in sporting situations, but also strongly benefit them in everyday life; people with high EI are better adjusted in social situations, have a better quality of friendships with reduced conflicts (Brackett & Rivers, 2004) and are generally happier in their lives (Zamanian et al.). This stability and happiness in life means that individuals are more likely to genuinely want to participate in sports, which for athletes means that they are significantly more likely to attend training sessions and to continue to gain intrinsic reward from sports playing (Ruseski, Humphreys, Hallman, Wicker & Breuer, 2014), which can lead to a better performance due to enjoyment. However, there is little objective evidence to support that general happiness in life results in better performance in sport and more research is needed to investigate …show more content…
This appears to be linked to the psychological skills and abilities learnt and developed through sports practice such as control over impulsive behaviour/thoughts, better control over personal emotions and stress control which, when successfully employed, results in less unwanted outbursts and irrational behaviour which can ultimately lead to a poorer performance. Although some studies touch on the trait EI concept and the fact that some people (due to their personality) are naturally higher in EI than others, evidence does generally support the notion that everyone has some degree of EI, but that this level is not fixed and therefore can be improved (the EI as a mental ability theory; O 'Broin & McDowall,

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