Comparison of Selected Mental Skills between Elite and Non-elite Taekwondo Male and Female Athletes
The purpose of this study was to compare selected mental skills in elite and non-elite Taekwondo athletes. 143 Taekwondo athletes (elite=61, non-elite=82) answered to the Ottawa Mental Skills Assessment Tools version 3. This questionnaire assesses three categories of mental skills; 1) Foundation skills 2) Psycho-somatic skills and 3) Cognitive skills. The results of 2×2 MANOVA revealed that there was a significant difference between male and female athletes only in activation factor. Also elite athletes significantly use game planning, goal setting, activation self-confidence and commitment more than non-elite athletes. However non-elite athletes were better than elite athletes in refocusing and stress reaction. According to the results of this study we recommended that taekwondo coaches improve the game planning, goal setting, activation, self-confidence and commitment factors in non-elite taekwondo athletes. Elite taekwondo athletes also should develop their refocusing and stress reaction to maintain their skill level.