Mental toughness is one of the most common terms used in sport – by athletes, coaches, spectators and the media. However, it is also one of the least understood terms. This book examines the characteristics and development of mentally tough sport performers, and presents the cutting-edge research in this area. Within these chapters, the author proposes that mental toughness is a personality style and mindset, and presents a compelling case for its inclusion within the positive psychological paradigm.
This second edition has been updated to include new material on the characterisation, conceptualisation, measurement, and development of mental toughness. As in the first edition the book includes a historical overview of empirical research, and also describes the conceptual arguments behind this research.
Now packed with even more rigorous scientific evidence and bang up-to-date anecdotes from the world of sport, the book presents a fascinating explanation of why some athletes are successful, and how and why they stay on top. Mental Toughness: The Mindset Behind Sporting Achievement will be essential reading for all sport psychology, sport science, sport studies, and coaching students.
Table of Contents
Introducing Mental Toughness. Characterizing Mental Toughness. Conceptualizing Mental Toughness. Measuring Mental Toughness. Developing and Maintaining Mental Toughness. Concluding Mental Toughness.
Michael Sheard has been a Senior Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Psychology at Teesside and York St John Universities. He has published widely on mental toughness, hardiness, and positive psychology. As a Chartered Sport and Exercise Psychologist registered with the British Psychological Society, he has also worked in a consultancy capacity with athletes across a variety of sports, ranging from grassroots to international competitive standards.
Praise for the first edition: "This book makes a valuable contribution to sport psychology by providing a one-stop shop for mental toughness, but its audience is likely to be more far-reaching to include related fields such as coaching and occupational psychology." – Kate Goodger, sport psychologist, in The Psychologist
Praise for the second edition:
"This book is a fantastic piece of literature that is a must have for any sport psychologist/athlete/coach/sport enthusiast! The work of Dr Sheard in this book is extensive to say the least, reviewing literature and modelling, quite formidably, the concept of Mental Toughness. In my third year undergraduate dissertation based in Mental Toughness, this book was quite literally a bible to me! Covering aspects from its conceptualisation to its measurement. If you're based in sport, social science or just fancy reading something interesting, this book is definitely one to have." – Adam Soley, Manchester Metropolitan University, UK, on amazon.co.uk
"This book authoritatively updates what was already an excellent and highly readable exposition on mental toughness in sports. All major theoretical and research bases are touched and supported with up-to-date citations. Additionally, scientific concepts are fleshed out with vivid anecdotal citations that make the book come alive. Michael Sheard has established himself as a leading authority on mental toughness." – Arnold LeUnes, Professor of Psychology, Texas A and M University, USA
"Michael Sheard has managed to successfully draw together a wide range of academic and applied material to dissect the phenomenon of mental toughness. The underlying academic credentials are extremely sound and are coupled with an engaging presentation style which I find very appealing. The book updates the previous edition very well, and the new material is excellent." – John Kremer, Honorary Research Fellow, Queen’s University, Belfast, UK
"Solidly anchored in scientific research, the second edition of Mental Toughness goes even further in the analysis of what mental toughness is, how to assess it, and its determinants. Written in a lively style, the book contains both research and anecdotes that make it accessible to both scholars and students alike." – Robert J. Vallerand, Lab Recherche sur le Comport Social, Department of Psychology, University of Québec, Canada
"This book is an ideal companion for coaches, athletes and sports studies students who are interested in sport psychology. The references and quotes from key academics and sporting greats allow the reader to understand the concept of mental toughness, its relationship to sporting success and the ways in which it can be nurtured through practice and training." – John F. Mathers, Director of Learning and Teaching, School of Sport, University of Stirling, UK
"The scholarly review of existing mental toughness research presented in this book is informative, and in particular, the critical analysis of previous attempts to create measures of mental toughness provides an insightful summary for scholars and students alike. Dr. Sheard’s discussion of the factors which contribute to the development of mental toughness – cultural influences in particular – is also illuminating." – Robert Harmison, Kibler Professor of Sport Psychology, James Madison University, USA