Psychosocial and socio-environmental correlates of sport identity and sport participation in secondary school-age children

Patrick W C LAU, Kenneth R. Fox, Mike W.L. Cheung

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


Although sport offers many psychological and physical health benefits, only a minority of youngsters become seriously involved. One construct that has potential to describe psychological commitment and longer term participation in sport is sport identity. The purpose of this study was to a) identify key psychosocial and socio-environmental variables related to sport identity, and b) provide a preliminary test of a sport identity model to predict children's sport participation. Participants were 55 boys and 45 girls aged 12 to 13 from a secondary school in England. A series of established questionnaires including the Task and Ego Orientation in Sport Questionnaire, Self-Regulation Questionnaire, Sport Competence Subscale from the Physical Self-Perception Profile and Perceived Importance Profile, and Athletic Identity Measurement Scale were used to assess psychosocial variables. In addition, socio-environmental questionnaires were developed for the study to assess the influence of parents, peers, and schools. Regression analysis indicated that sport identity was the strongest predictor of sport participation. A preliminary model featuring sport identity as a mediator between psychosocial, environmental variables and sport participation was tested. Results indicated that the data provided a good fit. This study has provided initial evidence that sport identity is an important construct for the study of children's sport participation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-21
Number of pages21
JournalEuropean Journal of Sport Science
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

User-Defined Keywords

  • Children's sport participation
  • Psychosocial factors
  • Socio-environmental factors
  • Sport identity
  • Sport model


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