The Role of Psychological Capital in Athletic Performance and Career Development of Adolescent Baseball Players in Taiwan
Physical Education and Arts School, Chengyi University College, Jimei University, Xiamen 361023, China
Department of Leisure Management, Taiwan Shoufu University, Tainan 72153, Taiwan
Department of Physical Education, Health & Recreation, National Chiayi University, Chiayi 62103, Taiwan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2020, 12(18), 7652; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12187652
Received: 14 July 2020 / Revised: 14 September 2020 / Accepted: 14 September 2020 / Published: 16 September 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Psychology of Sustainability and Sustainable Development)
Although many baseball players dream of playing professionally, intense training together with psychological pressure and injuries may increase athletes’ burnout and may lead athletes to quit and pursue alternate careers. Therefore, it is important for athletes to manage their mental toughness on their career paths. Findings from previous psychological capital (PsyCap) studies suggested that PsyCap had a positive influence on stress reduction. Therefore, this study examined PsyCap’s effects on athletes’ performance and career development, particularly under stress. We hope the findings can provide useful suggestions for athletes and coaches. To explore the relationships of PsyCap with athletic performance and career development, a structured questionnaire was distributed to 800 baseball players enrolled in middle and high schools in Taiwan with a valid return rate of 80.9%. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to verify the relationships among PsyCap, performance, and career development. The findings showed that PsyCap had significant influence on both athletic performance and career development of the study subjects. Based on our findings, implications for baseball players and coaches as well as suggestions for future research are discussed.