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Intrinsic Motivation and Flow in Skateboarding: An Ethnographic Study



Intrinsic motivation was examined in a spontaneous and natural context by observing and interviewing skateboarders as they engaged in their sport. At the same time, the flow phenomenon and its relationship to intrinsic motivation was explored. Data were collected from twenty skateboarders. Results indicated being intrinsically motivated can be a rich, subjective experience characterized by a sense of freedom, euphoria and efficacy, challenge and satisfaction. Likewise, flow is a rich, subjective experience characterized by peak performance, heightened concentration, positive affect, and transcendence. KeywordsFlow-Intrinsic motivation-Motivation-Engagement-Sport-Skateboarding-Well-being
Intrinsic Motivation and Flow in Skateboarding:
An Ethnographic Study
T. Seifert ÆC. Hedderson
!Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009
Abstract Intrinsic motivation was examined in a spontaneous and natural context by
observing and interviewing skateboarders as they engaged in their sport. At the same time,
the flow phenomenon and its relationship to intrinsic motivation was explored. Data were
collected from twenty skateboarders. Results indicated being intrinsically motivated can be
a rich, subjective experience characterized by a sense of freedom, euphoria and efficacy,
challenge and satisfaction. Likewise, flow is a rich, subjective experience characterized by
peak performance, heightened concentration, positive affect, and transcendence.
Keywords Flow !Intrinsic motivation !Motivation !Engagement !
Sport !Skateboarding !Well-being
1 Introduction
Because of its critical role in development, learning, and well-being (Deci and Ryan 1985;
Deci et al 1991; Deci and Ryan 1995; Grolnick et al. 1997), intrinsic motivation has
emerged as a compelling educational and psychological concept. Associated with deep
cognitive engagement, mastery goal orientation, and self-esteem (Deci and Ryan 1995;
Seifert 2004), intrinsic motivation ensues from contexts that nurture curiosity, exploration,
challenge, mastery, and interest, and it is in this context that development occurs
(Csikszentmihalyi and Nakamura 1989,1999; Deci and Ryan 1985,1995; Grolnick et al.
1997; Ryan and Deci 2000a,b).
Yet the most alluring (and arguably important) consequence of intrinsic motivation is an
ensuing deep and enduring satisfaction culminating in a flow episode. During a flow
episode the individual experiences an autotelic state of consciousness (Csikszentmihalyi
T. Seifert (&)
Faculty of Education, Memorial University, St. John’s, NL A1B 3X8, Canada
C. Hedderson
Eastern School District, St. John’s, NL, Canada
J Happiness Stud
DOI 10.1007/s10902-009-9140-y
1975,1991) in which the activity becomes enjoyable in-and-of itself, to the point that
individuals will engage in the activity to experience the resultant pleasure (Shernoff et al.
2003). This enjoyment comes about as a result of the satisfaction of the need for com-
petence through the pursuit of challenge and mastery. The quality of the subjective
experience is dependent upon a match between the perceived challenge and the perceived
skill (Massimini and Carli 1988; Moneta and Csikszentmihalyi 1996).
If the subjective experience of satisfaction and pleasure is both the reason and outcome
for the activity, previous research on intrinsic motivation has provided minimal informa-
tion about those experiences. Indeed, there are two main gaps in the research literature.
First, there is an intuitive relationship between intrinsic motivation and flow. While ‘‘the
concept of flow represents a descriptive dimension that may signify some of the purer
instances of intrinsic motivation’’ (Deci and Ryan 1985, p. 29), there is a conceptual link
between intrinsic motivation and flow. ‘‘Flow is generally reported when a person is doing
his or her favorite activity’’ (Csikszentmihalyi 1997, p. 33) and may not occur when one is
doing something one would not want to do or feeling distracted (Csikszentmihalyi 1997, p.
28). This suggests that flow is more likely to occur when individuals are engaging in an
activity freely or autonomously, which is an inherent characteristic of intrinsic motivation
(Deci and Ryan 1985). Second, to be intrinsically motivated is to engage in an activity
because the activity is inherently satisfying (Deci and Ryan 1985). Flow experiences are
autotelic; the activities in which flow is experienced are undertaken because they are
worthwhile in their own right (Csikszentmihalyi 1988,1991).
While there are some conceptual links between intrinsic motivation and flow, few
studies have explicated the relationships between intrinsic motivation and flow. Some
researchers have reported correlations between measures of intrinsic motivation and flow
(Martin and Cutler 2002; Shernoff et al. 2003). Yet, despite these attempts, there is a lack
of a clear delineation of the psychological mechanisms linking intrinsic motivation to flow.
This is an important question to consider because the conceptual bases of intrinsic moti-
vation and flow are different. According to self-determination theory (Deci and Ryan 1985;
Ryan and Deci 2000a,b; Grolnick, et al. 1997) a need for autonomy, competence and
relatedness is the psychological foundation supporting intrinsic motivation. However, flow
is thought to occur when there is goal clarity, unambiguous feedback and a balance
between challenge and skill (Csikszentmihalyi 1988,1997; Csikszentmihalyi et al. 2005).
Although elements of self-determination may be present in the conditions producing flow,
they are not a necessary condition in Csikszentmihalyi’s formulation.
While qualitative studies have made a contribution to the study of flow (e.g., Jackson1992;
Voiskounsky and Smyslova 2003; Hefferon and Ollis 2006), there is little qualitative research
describing and delineating intrinsic motivation. Previous intrinsic motivation research has
been in the form of experimental or correlational studies that have tended to measure intrinsic
motivation as either free-choice behaviour or self-reported interest (Deci et al. 1999;
Rawsthorne and Elliot 1999; Wiersma 1992). In a typical study utilizing the free-choice
behaviour measure, the amount of time participants spent on a target activity following an
experimental manipulation has been interpreted as a measure of intrinsic motivation. In
studies utilizing self-report measures, self-reported interest in the target task following an
experimental manipulation was interpreted as the measure of intrinsic motivation. While the
importance of this research must be acknowledged, the methods do not readily provide a
compelling account of what it means to be intrinsically motivated.
Likewise, few studies in the tradition of self-determination research have examined
intrinsic motivation in a natural context in which the participants freely and spontaneously
engaged in a meaningful activity. There appear to be no studies of intrinsic motivation
T. Seifertm, C. Hedderson
utilizing qualitative methods such as ethnography. Yet these methods could provide a more
detailed understanding of intrinsic motivation by describing, for example, athletes’
thoughts, feelings, and intentions. Krane and Baird (2005) suggested that sport psychology
research could be advanced through the use of ethnography as a means of gaining ‘‘insight
into the behaviors, values, emotions, and mental states of group members (p. 88).’
To better understand intrinsic motivation in a natural and spontaneous context, and its
relationship to flow, we undertook to observe and interview skateboarders as they par-
ticipated in their activity. Skateboarders were chosen as a group to study because the
activity appears to be inherently intrinsically motivated. It seems to lack an externally
regulating structure of the type present in organized minor sports or school.
There is no
supervision, no systematic drills and practice, and no requirements. There are no coaches,
officials, or rules. While there may be some discussions among skateboarders about trying
certain tricks, the activity seems to be determined by the skateboarders themselves.
Evidence for this position comes from Beal’s (1996) study of skateboarders in which
freedom and self-determination emerged as two themes. Skateboarders in Beal’s study
used the activity as a ‘‘means of self-expression and of challenging their own physical
limits’’ (p. 4) while taking advantage of its opportunities for creativity which are, by
definition, the fundamental criteria of intrinsic motivation (Deci et al. 1997; Deci and Ryan
1985,1994). At the same time, the lack of authority and competition supported the pursuit
of self-expression and self-determination (Beal 1996), and intrinsic motivation (Deci et al.
1997; Deci and Ryan 1985,1994). Consequently, skateboarding should be an activity that
is inherently intrinsically motivated.
Our purposes in this investigation were two-fold. First, we wanted to study intrinsic
motivation in a spontaneous and natural context with the intent of providing a rich
description of what it means to be intrinsically motivated. What is it like to be intrinsically
motivated, and what psychological constructs might support that motivation? This question
is important because in psychological research, including intrinsic motivation research,
what ‘‘normal people typically do and feel in their natural environments has been largely
ignored’’ (Hektner et al. 2007, p. 4),
a claim that would be true of intrinsic motivation
Second, we wanted to examine the flow experience of skateboarders and its rela-
tionship to intrinsic motivation. What is a flow experience like for a skateboarder? How
does intrinsic motivation interplay with the experience of flow? This question is
important because few studies have examined the conceptual link between intrinsic
motivation and flow. Can the central constructs of self-determination theory which are
used to explain intrinsic motivation (specifically autonomy and competence) play a role
in understanding flow, which uses its own theoretical constructs (such as a challenge-
skill balance, ordering of consciousness, and enjoyment)? However, it is important to
note that the research methodology limits the extent to which this question can be
investigated. The skateboarders’ interviews provide insight into their experiences. The
evidence is descriptive, yet may provide clues about possible relationships between
intrinsic motivation and flow.
While there may be organized leagues or structured events in some regions, there were none in the
province in which this study took place.
Although Hektner et al. (2007) point out that while quantitative methods have ignored the subjective
experience, subjective methods have tended to lack systematic rigor (p. 4). Qualitative researchers have
made significant strides in establishing systematic rigor in their work.
Intrinsic Motivation and Flow in Skateboarding
1.1 Methodology
The research method used in this study was that of ethnography. Although ethnography can
take many forms, ranging from observation to autobiography (Atkinson and Hammersley
1994; Suzuki et al. 2005), the method we used could best be described as complete
observer (Atkinson and Hammersley 1994). The researcher was partially immersed in the
venue, spending considerable time observing and recording notes. After several periods of
observation, she began to talk to skateboarders about skateboarding, motivation and flow.
While she was not a participant in the activity (therefore not participant-observer), she
spent a considerable amount of time interacting with those who were.
Two studies of skateboarding have used ethnography as a research method. Karsten and
Pel (2000) used ethnography to better understand the culture of skateboarders and their use
of public spaces, and Beal (1996) used the method to uncover alternative conceptions of
masculinity constructed by skateboarders. More noteworthy is a growing advocacy for the
role of qualitative research methods in understanding psychological phenomena (Rennie
et al. 1988; Michell 2004; Halling 2008). Halling (2008) has argued that qualitative
research, and phenomenology in particular, is a research method that is useful for better
understanding the experiences of people. Such a contribution to research on flow is evident
in Jackson’s (1992) study of the experiences of elite figure skaters and, Hefferon and Ollis’s
(2006) study of dancers. Following these examples, we employed observations and inter-
views as a means of better understanding intrinsic motivation and flow in skateboarding.
The demographic profile of the 20 skateboarders in our study was similar to those in
previous studies (Beal 1996; Karsten and Pel 2000): caucasian, male, 15–18 years in age,
with a range of skateboarding experience (1–6 years). Because of the nature of the activity,
the public nature and spontaneity of the venue, and age of the skateboarders, oral rather
than written consent to participate was obtained. Prior to the interview, each participant
was given an explanation of the study and an information sheet describing the researchers,
the study, and their rights.
The study began in the late fall of 2005 with observations and interviews at the largest
skateboarding park in the city. Operated and maintained by the city, this venue was located
in the parking lot of an abandoned stadium, and consisted of a number of obstacles such as
quarter pipes and rails. It was the most popular venue, attracting skateboarders from around
the metro-region.
By the following spring when data collection resumed, the city had dismantled the stadium
park following the opening of a new, state-of-the-art park. The new park quickly became the
preferred choice for skateboarders, and observations and interviews resumed at the new
location. Yet, while many skateboarders frequented the new park, others opted to practice
their craft at other locations with suitable structures, such as stairs, handrails and ledges.
These skateboarders were typically found at malls, plazas, and local business complexes.
Data collection began with naturalistic observation. Upon arrival at the venue, the
researcher would position herself in such a way that she could view as much of the activity
as possible, but be visible to the skateboarders. After watching the skateboarders for a
period of time, a skateboarder exhibiting a mastery goal orientation was chosen at random
for extended observation.
After six visits to the skateboard park, which represented about eight hours of detailed
observations, interviews commenced. An interview session began by observing
Approval for the consent protocol was granted by the Interdisciplinary Committee for Ethics in Human
Research at Memorial University.
T. Seifertm, C. Hedderson
skateboarders for a short duration, picking out, at random, an individual to study, and
waiting for an opportunity to approach him. Often a skateboarder would approach the
researcher and start a conversation, creating an opportunity to initiate an interview. While
most interviews were conducted individually, several interviews occurred in a group
The interviews were semi-structured and open-ended, and were conducted within a
broader conversation about skateboarding. Although the interview was open-ended, there
were some topics of interest, which were explored as questions about intrinsic motivation
and flow, with follow-up probes if needed. The questions were derived from theoretical
descriptions of intrinsic motivation and flow as explicated in previous research (e.g.,
Csikszentmihalyi 1975; Deci and Ryan 1985). Questions about intrinsic motivation
included a discussion of reasons for enjoyment of skateboarding, autonomy and control.
Questions about flow included a discussion of the subjective experience of flow, time
transformation and concentration.
Data were recorded in the form of field notes and jot notes, which were rewritten as
transcripts. After an initial reading of the transcripts to develop an overall sense of the
meanings the analysis began with a breakdown of participants’ responses into units of
analysis, which Rennie et al. (1988) called meaning units. A meaning unit refers to a
phrase or sentence that expresses a single idea (Dupuis et al. 2006), which Fischer and
Wertz (1979) referred to as ‘‘a distinguishable moment in the overall experience’’ (cited in
Halling 2008, p. 163). Meaning units were obtained by parsing responses and extracting
words or phrases conveying participants’ thoughts or feelings about their experiences.
Extracted phrases were clustered into sub-themes which were subsequently organized into
higher-ordered themes (Ryba 2007), a form of data reduction that is crudely analogous to
using a factor analysis to combine and condense a set of variables into a smaller number of
constructs representing the meanings conveyed by those variables.
In qualitative research, the values and beliefs of the researcher create an inevitable bias
to the interpretation of data (Suzuki et al. 2005). To minimize the impact of interpretative
biases and increase the trustworthiness of the results, two steps were undertaken. First, two
researchers categorized meaning units, which were compared to each other with refine-
ments as needed (e.g., van Etten et al. 2008), with agreement on themes being achieved.
Second, the themes were compiled into a summary which was then presented to an
independent group of skateboarders who were asked to comment on the interpretation. This
second group agreed that the summary was consistent with their own experiences, although
they admitted that the experience may vary among individuals.
2 Results
What is it about an activity that can keep a teenage boy engrossed for hours, persisting in
the face of failure? It was not uncommon to witness, during 15 or 30 min of observation, a
skateboarder attempting to master a trick with dogged persistence. They would attempt to
execute a trick, fail, and retry; after repeated attempts they might take a break only to
return to attempt to master the same trick. For example:
This skateboarder looks to be around 14 or 15. He is attempting a stunt on the
rail he began to pick up speed as he approached the rail, hit the rail and grinded
down halfway when he lost his balance. He landed on his side, but quickly got up and
ran after his skateboard picked up his skateboard and ran back to where he
Intrinsic Motivation and Flow in Skateboarding
started. He stood up for a moment and looked at the rail began to pick up speed as
he approached the rail. He reached the rail, grinded half way down the rail and
lost his balance. He fell down again, quickly got back up and said, ‘‘Ugh! Man, why
can’t I get this now?’’ He picked up his skateboard and laid it on the ground -
where he initially started. One of his friends yelled out, ‘‘J! Come on over, man!’’ J.
turned to them and yelled, ‘‘I am in the middle of something here, D! Can’t you see
that?’’ [He made at least three more attempts; Observations of J.].
If being intrinsically motivated means to engage in an activity for enjoyment, J.’s
actions raise questions about what it means to be intrinsically motivated. There appeared to
be no external pressures (although admittedly we did not ask him about his motives—he
could have conceivably been introjected or identified regulated; Deci and Ryan 1985). If J.
experienced frustration, could he be said to be enjoying the activity and, therefore,
intrinsically motivated? Is it the case that intrinsic motivation is defined by the source of
goals and goal pursuit rather than by enjoyment (Seifert 2004)?
J.’s behaviors are consistent with a mastery/task orientation. He was focused upon
mastery of a particular skill rather than a concern for perceived ability (e.g., Seifert 2004).
Indeed, it appears that skateboarders might be one group that exhibits high levels of task
orientation, as evidenced in a study by Boyd and Kim (2007) in which a sample of
skateboarders had a mean item score of 4.41 (±.57) on a 5 point Likert scale assessing task
orientation. At one point we were interested in interviewing skateboarders exhibiting
behaviors consistent with an ego/performance orientation, but they were rare.
A number of themes consistent with previous research emerged from the interviews and
allow for speculation about the relationship between intrinsic motivation and flow. In a
setting that supports autonomy, skateboarders are free to set goals and pursue challenges.
In doing so, they persist and adapt, increasing concentration. Increased concentration leads
to a narrowing of the field of attention, resulting in flow and providing an emotional
foundation for sustaining intrinsic motivation. The end result is an intense flow episode, a
psychological state that many actively sought.
2.1 Reasons for Enjoying Skateboarding
Once a conversation between the researcher and skateboarder was initiated, participants
were asked their reasons for enjoying skateboarding: What makes skateboarding enjoyable
for you? What makes skateboarding more enjoyable than other activities? The responses of
the skateboarders ranged from well-articulated expressions of affect (‘‘I just feel so
carefree whenever I am skateboarding. I feel free!’’) to non-descriptive explanations (‘‘It’s
something to be at’’). Three basic themes emerged from the analysis of comments: sat-
isfaction, challenge, and freedom.
2.1.1 Satisfaction and Accomplishment
Skateboarding, it appears, is a subjective experience and skateboarders unabashedly stated
that the subjective experience, in-and-of itself, was the reason for participating in the
activity. Some skateboarders described the experience in general terms (happy, excited,
fun), while some were more specific, describing it as a thrill. However, the most prominent
explanation was the feeling of satisfaction that comes with success through hard work.
Indeed, while observing the youth it was not uncommon to witness an expression of joy
after successful execution of a trick following many unsuccessful attempts:
T. Seifertm, C. Hedderson
I watched closely as one particular skateboarder was continually attempting an ollie
off the flat green box. It appeared that he was having some minor difficulties with the
kick-off with each consecutive try, it seemed as if his kick-off was improv-
ing on the fifth attempt his foot was directly in the middle of the skateboard and
he landed the stunt successfully. He yelled, ‘‘Oh yeah, baby,’’ smiled, and started
jumping up and down in the air. [Observations of M.]
2.1.2 Challenge
References to the setting of challenges and striving to meet them were a common theme.
The theme of challenge manifested itself in a number of different ways: learning a new
trick, perfecting old ones, taking risks and feelings of control. Skateboarders could choose
the level of difficulty of the trick they wished to attempt, and could work at their own pace.
If they felt they had mastered a stunt, they could move on to another. Yet, the large number
of tricks that they could pursue, in addition to improving those in their current repertoire,
introduced another level of challenge.
Closely connected to the pursuit of challenge was the endurance of failure. That is,
skateboarders not only sought to master a trick, to learn different tricks or variations of old
ones, but they also persisted in the face of failure. In that respect, they modeled mastery
goal pursuit (e.g., Seifert 2004) as the adage rang true: if at first you don’t succeed, try, try
again. These behaviors are evident in the observations of Z.:
The boy that I have decided to focus on appears to be attempting a stunt on the rail.
After observing him attempt this stunt several times, I began to get an idea of the
stunt that he was trying to land (a grind). he began to pick up speed; when he
reached the rail, he jumped and landed with the skateboard perpendicular to the
rail half way down the rail he stumbled off. The boy calmly picked up his
skateboard and returned back to where he started. He placed his hands on his hips for
five minutes while staring at the rail pushing off, he started towards the rail
again but barely even touched the rail when he fell completely off the skateboard.
He quickly got up and started chasing his skateboard he began picking up
speed it looked like he was trying a different strategy this time he grinded
down the rail. He jumped off prematurely before reaching the end of the rail [bailed
out]. He tried at least six more times. In two of those attempts he nearly succeeded,
and smiled when he did. [Observations of Z.]
The observations of M., and to a lesser extent Z., suggest a close relationship between
skateboarders’ subjective experiences and challenge. Z.’s persistence may have been
fueled by a belief that eventually he would succeed, and success would lead to satisfaction
(e.g., Weiner 2005; Seifert 2004). M.’s jubilation at having achieved success serves as an
example of the subjective experience that accompanies success and is an intricate element
of intrinsic motivation. Achieving goals and overcoming challenges with persistence
generated feelings of satisfaction and accomplishment that, in some cases, were intense.
That sense of accomplishment might be the source, at least in part, of the fun, thrills, or
rushes that some described as the reason for enjoying skateboarding, although this claim is
conjecture at this point.
Feelings of satisfaction may have reinforced a sense of control or power reported by the
skateboarders. That is, these feelings reinforce a sense of self-determination (Deci and
Ryan 1985) or agency (Bandura 2001,2006). Conquering a challenge generates feelings of
Intrinsic Motivation and Flow in Skateboarding
satisfaction which reinforces a sense of agency. Agency is a central component of moti-
vation, playing a critical role in the initiation and regulation of behaviour (Bandura 2001,
2006) and can be argued to be the nexus of related theories of motivation such as attri-
bution, achievement goal and self-determination theories. The reports of skateboarders
suggest a symbiotic relationship between challenge and subjective experience: agency led
to the setting of challenges and a willingness to expend effort which resulted in success;
success generated feelings of satisfaction, reinforcing a sense of agency.
While interviews suggested that feelings of satisfaction were a reason for enjoying the
activity, skateboarders also experienced frustration. There were occasions when skate-
boarders would curse, or kick and throw their skateboard in frustration at a lack of
progress. However, it was rare to a skateboarder give up after such expressions of frus-
tration. They would take a break, refocus, and try again. The high levels of persistence may
have been indicative of high levels of mastery goal pursuit and a sense of agency.
2.1.3 Freedom and Autonomy
One of the most compelling themes was that of freedom, and observations suggest that
skateboarding is inherently self-directed. This is evident in both the isolation of practice
and the seemingly sporadic changes in activities. It is also solitary; there is limited social
interaction. During observations, verbal exchanges among skateboarders were minimal and
tended to be exhortations of a social nature (‘‘Way to go’’ or ‘‘Hey man, come here! These
girls want to talk to you!’’). When asked about skateboarding as a social activity, most
reported that they skateboard for themselves, for the pleasure they derive from the activity,
and not the social interaction. It was not uncommon to observe a skateboarder working
alone at an obstacle, absorbed in his quest to master a trick. Typically, a skateboarder
would spend some time at an obstacle trying a stunt, and then move onto another obstacle
without being prompted to do so. This limited social interaction suggests that tricks
skateboarders attempt, and the equipment they choose to use, are not directed by others,
but self-determined.
The limited social interaction may be indicative of the freedom skateboarders cherish.
They do not want anyone telling them what to do—they just want to skateboard. Several
skateboarders stated that there were no restrictions on them when skating, no rules or
expectations, with the accompanying feelings of freedom. For example:
I just feel so carefree whenever I am skateboarding. I feel free! I feel free of parents,
teachers, people in general I just enjoy my freedom and like to express that
through skateboarding I actually feel in control of what I do I can pretty much
do what I want. I feel that I am in charge [M.].
In response to a follow up probe, all of the skateboarders agreed that having freedom
was one reason that skateboarding was so enjoyable. This love of freedom and autonomy
was so strong that most skateboarders rejected the idea of having coaches or developmental
programs. They did not want to have an adult telling them what to do, or bossing them
around. They relished their autonomy and freedom, and were unwilling to relinquish it.
2.2 Being in the Zone—the Flow Experience
Being in the zone (or ‘‘in the groove’’) ‘‘is a feeling you get inside of yourself’’ [A.] and
some skateboarders actively pursue that feeling. It is ‘‘what every skateboarder aims for’
[S.], although T. explained that they strive to succeed at the stunt and ‘‘the groove’’ just
T. Seifertm, C. Hedderson
comes naturally. For some, skateboarding was not just something to do; it was an intense,
subjective experience, and their goal was to be ‘‘in the zone.’’ But what is it like to be ‘‘in
the zone or groove,’’ to experience flow, to feel it?
While previous research has postulated nine dimensions to the flow experience, our
skateboarders described flow as having four qualities. Not all skateboarders reported these
qualities. For many, being ‘‘in the zone’’ was an intense, emotional experience. Their
descriptions were rich, both in language and expression, pointing to a singularly intense,
subjective experience. For several of the skateboarders, being ‘‘in the zone’’ assumed a
transcendental quality in which they became disconnected from their surroundings, feeling
separate from the world. But for many skateboarders, being ‘‘in the zone’’ was an occasion
of peak performance in which they were able to ‘‘nail the sick stunts.’’ Episodes of being in
the zone were described as periods of intense concentration. Like enjoyment, these themes
are not discrete categories, but were related to each other.
2.2.1 A Subjective Experience
Being in the zone was an intense subjective experience characterized by euphoria,
emancipation, and efficacy. As a state of euphoria, being in the zone was described as
‘addictive,’’ ‘‘the ultimate high,’’ ‘‘a rush’’ which made you ‘‘feel so alive.’’ Two skate-
boarders were able to describe, in their own way, the euphoria of the flow state. J.’s
description captures the episodic, transient and subjective nature of the experience:
Wow! That is what it is like wow! There is nothing that I have ever done in this
world that has made me feel this way . You just feel good all over, especially
inside it’s an unreal feeling [J.].
S. conveyed the same intense and euphoric nature of the flow experience. Being in the
zone was much more than something that made you feel good:
It’s a natural high it’s addictive. The feelings you get from skateboarding are
addictive. It’s a natural high. You don’t need booze or drugs to get a high. You need
a skateboard [S.].
Several skateboarders described being ‘‘in the zone’’ as emancipating. It liberated them
from stresses and pressures, giving them a feeling of immense freedom as though the cares
of the world had been lifted from them:
It is awesome. I feel like I am unstoppable, like a weight has been lifted off my
shoulders and I am under no pressure whatsoever. I feel free, and because I feel no
pressure I am more successful in my attempts. I just feel no stress or pressure
when I am in the zone [B.].
It’s like you are flying, flying around the park on your skateboard. You feel like
nothing can ever stop you the skateboard is part of your body. You just feel so
free, and unstoppable you feel so alive [J.].
The use of the word ‘‘unstoppable’’ by both B. and J. points to the third type of quality
of the subjective experience. Being ‘‘in the zone’’ entailed an enhanced level of self-
efficacy or agency, elevated levels of confidence bordering on invincibility:
[Made] you feel like you have so much power and control, and no one can take this
away from you. You feel so much better about yourself [M.]. You get real cocky and
full of yourself because you get this feeling that you can land all your tricks [N.].
Intrinsic Motivation and Flow in Skateboarding
2.2.2 A Transcendental Experience
For many skateboarders, the subjective experience of skateboarding moved beyond
euphoria, emancipation or efficacy to become a transcendental experience. They reported
feeling disconnected from their surroundings, or being transported to another place:
When you are in the zone, you are in a different place, a place where nothing else
matters. It is a place where you feel on top of the world [M.].
You feel like you are in another world or place, or something like that because you
don’t care who or what is around you [K.].
In the zone is like you are in a different world all together. It’s not like you are in this
world at all. You just feel away. You feel far away from everything and everyone
else. . You are so carried away with the skateboarding [A.].
It may be the case that the transcendental experience is an artifact of the intense
concentration and sense of freedom. The necessity of focusing on a trick coupled with the
escape from pressures and the release from stress may have created a feeling of the
freedom that gave rise to a sense of being in another world or place. The evidence, though,
does not speak directly to this.
2.2.3 Concentration
Skateboarders’ comments of transcendental feelings are consistent with anecdotal reports
of the transcendental possibilities of sport, in which the participant experiences altered
perceptions, complete absorption, or a sense of tranquility (Cooper 1998; Murphy 1977;
Ravizza 1977). T., for example, described being focused as ‘‘an escape.’’ This concen-
tration, for some, leads to a singlepointedness in which the only thing they were thinking of
was skateboarding in the present moment:
It’s hard to describe, but it is almost like you are so completely wrapped up in what
you are doing that your mind shuts itself off from anything else [A.].
When you are in the zone you really zone out everything else. All the people, all the
traffic, whatever else and you are just thinking about nailing the trick [D.].
But not all skateboarders reported this singlepointedness of concentration. For most,
focused concentration was less about ‘‘being absorbed’’ in the activity, but something that
was necessary for successful execution of the trick:
I find that if I can concentrate hard enough at the stunt, I will have a better chance of
sticking it [K.].
Yet S. and M. were able to take the necessity of concentration a step further. For them,
concentration led to a unity of mind and body in which concentration was necessary to
control the body in order to execute the trick:
You have to concentrate really hard on the stunt or you are just not going to stick it.
You are wasting your time. This is why you really can’t afford to think about
anything else. If your mind is not in it, then neither is your body. It takes a com-
bination of the two and a strong effort on your part. Therefore, you have to be
entirely focused on that thing and that thing only or you just won’t stick it the stunt
T. Seifertm, C. Hedderson
You just put all your mental and physical energy into sticking the stunt It is the
one time in the day that there are not a million thoughts running through your head. I
don’t worry or think about much of anything just skateboarding [M.].
Because of the expenditure of mental and physical energy and, presumably, the unity of
mind and body, the concentration needed to execute the stunt becomes channeled into a
singlepointedness. Concentration on performance led to a narrowing of the field of stimuli
that evolved into a single focus, absent of distracting or competing thoughts. In fact, it is
possible that concentration can become so narrow they do not feel pain:
You don’t feel pain when you are in the groove. Your elbow could be busted up and
bleeding, and you wouldn’t even know or care. Your arm could be hanging off, for
f*sake, and you wouldn’t feel it I broke my leg a couple of years back and I swear
to God that it didn’t really pain a lot until I was completely out of the groove [T.].
I won’t feel pain if I messed up a trick when I am in the groove, because you really
don’t feel pain while you are in the groove. You won’t feel pain until after, so you
are not too worried about falling [S.].
Likewise, the narrow field of stimuli led to an altered sense of time. Yet, very few of the
skateboarders described an altered sense of time as the distortion or suspension of time that
is described elsewhere (Cooper 1998). While one skateboarder did mention that ‘‘time
stands still,’’ for most an altered sense of time amounted to a loss of awareness of time
rather than a distortion. Typically, skateboarders would come to the park and skateboard
for several hours without any sense of how much time had passed.
2.2.4 Peak Performance
Not all skateboarders described flow as a transcendent experience. For these skateboarders,
being ‘‘in the zone’’ was a moment of peak performance—a moment in which they felt
they were able to execute their performance perfectly, to ‘‘nail the sick stunts’’:
It’s incredible! You feel like you are such a good skateboarder! You get so into it that
you keep pushing and pushing, and landing the stunts. It is awesome [T.].
Your adrenaline keeps pumping and you can’t stop. You just want to keep going.
You just want to keep sticking the stunts [A.].
Yeah, you get real cocky and full of yourself because you just get this feeling that
you can land all your tricks [N.].
Observations of one skateboarder demonstrate this characterization of flow as peak
He was skateboarding from one obstacle to the next, in no apparent sequence or
pattern, and was smiling and shouting ‘‘Woo Hoo!’’ and ‘‘Boo Ya!’’ as he whizzed
by. He landed all the stunts successfully. At no point did he stop to talk or take a
break, or size things up before he attempted a stunt. Instead, he just rushed into his
stunts. He would land a particular stunt successfully then vocalize loudly [Obser-
vations of anonymous skateboarder, October 20].
Although descriptions of being in the zone were characterized by four themes, these
themes are interconnected to each other and descriptions of enjoyment. The intense sub-
jective experience of being in the zone may be associated with achieving a peak
Intrinsic Motivation and Flow in Skateboarding
performance. Focused concentration may create a feeling of transcendence while at the
same time leading to a heightened awareness of the pleasures derived from the activity.
3 Discussion
What is it like to be intrinsically motivated? What is it about an activity that can keep a
teenage boy engrossed for hours, persisting in the face of failure? The results from our
research suggest that the answer to the first question is, in part, the answer to the second. It
appears that to be intrinsically motivated is more than freely choosing to engage in an
activity, or to engage in the activity for enjoyment. Rather, to be intrinsically motivated
appears to involve mastery of a challenge culminating in an intense subjective experience.
Feelings of satisfaction and pleasure, confidence and control, and relaxation and freedom
permeate one’s being, leaving one feeling enhanced and fully alive. While the subjective
experience may accompany the success, and in some instances be the motivation for the
activity, arguably a sense of agency is the foundation of intrinsic motivation (Bandura
2001,2006). Although Bandura (2001,2006) has suggested that self-efficacy is the
foundation of agency, the data reported here suggest agency involves much more. To be
agentic is to believe that one is capable of achieving the outcome; but it also means to
adopt a mastery goal orientation, including attributions to internal, unstable causes (Seifert
2004). This sense of agency enabled skateboarders to persist in the face of failure to
eventually achieve mastery. Without high self-efficacy or an internal, unstable attribution
pattern, they would not have been able to achieve their goals.
A sense of self-determination or autonomy for setting one’s own goals and finding ways
of achieving them is an important part of agency. The autonomy experienced by skate-
boarders allowed them to set challenges for themselves that were appropriate for their skill
level. At the same time, skateboarders were dedicated to self-improvement, and as they
progressed, they raised the level of challenge. Consequently, skateboarders were con-
fronted with self-selected challenges that constantly tested and improved their skills.
Having set their own challenges, skateboarders then persisted in their attempts to conquer
the challenge. Although there were expressions of frustration, performance impairment or
helplessness did not ensue. Rather, the frustrated skateboarder would often take a moment
to think of some way of improving, or try again later. The consequence of this investment
of effort was success, followed by pride and satisfaction.
Although these findings are consistent with self-determination theory, one contribution
of this study is the description of intrinsic motivation as a rich subjective experience. For
skateboarders, to be intrinsically motivated was to experience joy and freedom. To be able
to set goals and achieve them left skateboarders with an enduring feeling of satisfaction
and sense of autonomy expressed as a sense of freedom.
The quintessence of intrinsic motivation was to achieve a flow episode, to be ‘‘in the
zone’’, which was described in four terms. Skateboarders spoke of flow as being peak
performance, deep concentration, a rich subjective experience, and/or having a transcen-
dental quality.
The subjective experience of flow occurs under conditions that require persistence,
which in turn, results in flow. Although this may seem redundant, it points to the recursive
nature of the experience. Autonomy allowed the skateboarders to set challenges. Through
effort and concentration they conquered those challenges, resulting in pleasure, satisfac-
tion, and flow. This led to the formation of new challenges, new efforts, and more flow
T. Seifertm, C. Hedderson
As in reported in previous research on flow, concentration was an essential element of
the flow experience, a necessary ingredient for successful execution and flow. When in
flow, concentration was directed wholly to the task at hand. Similar to Csikszentmihayli’s
descriptions (e.g., Csikszentmihalyi 1975), the field of stimuli was narrowed and attention
focused upon the activity to the exclusion of extraneous stimuli, at which point the
skateboarders became absorbed within the activity. A ‘singlepointedness’ of concentration
ensued in which the only thing they were thinking about was the trick.
The experiences of skateboarders indicate that intrinsic motivation and flow appear to
be intertwined in several ways. Because the activity is self-determining, it is easy to
hypothesize that skateboarders set goals for themselves that challenge their skill level.
Indeed, during the interviews skateboarders talked about striving to learn new tricks or
master old ones. It is also easy to assume that the goals they set for themselves were well-
defined (they chose the trick to try) and feedback would be immediate clear (e.g., success,
failure, or improvement), conditions necessary for flow to occur (Csikszentmihalyi et al.
The conditions of intrinsic motivation may be necessary for a flow episode but may not
be sufficient. Satisfaction of needs for competence and autonomy may be antecedents,
leading to concentration and goal-directed behavior that could become a transcendental
experience but these may not necessarily result in a flow experience. Some researchers
have suggested that flow just happens when all the pieces fall into place (Massimini and
Carli 1988), and there is ‘‘an ordering of consciousness in which the elements of con-
sciousness are in harmony with each other and congruent with the self’’ (Csikszentmihalyi
1988, p. 24). That is, flow happens when a person’s goals are consistent with one’s sense of
self (Csikszentmihalyi 1988,1997).
But is the experience dichotomous: either you experience it, or you don’t? Skate-
boarders’ reports and previous research leave open the question of whether flow is a
graduated phenomenon, or whether people understand the term ‘in the zone’ differently,
and therefore describe different aspects of the phenomenon. It may be the case that flow is
graduated, experienced on a number of different levels. For example, peak performance
might be one level, concentration and absorption another, and transcendence yet another,
with some people reaching some levels but not others. Indeed, the phenomenon ‘‘was first
described in groups of people who were able to come in contact with this experience in
its highest forms’’ (Massimini and Carli 1988), which suggests that people may experience
differing levels of flow. If so, then the degree of flow achieved would limit individuals’
descriptions of the experience. For one skateboarder, ‘being in the zone’ may refer to a
peak performance while for another, it may refer to transcendental experiences. Conse-
quently, questions about ‘being in the zone’ might evoke responses about peak
performance but not transcendence, from the first skateboarder.
Csikszentmihalyi’s (1975,1991) conception of flow postulated nine dimensions of the
experience, and research has proceeded on this basis. These elements appeared to be
present with the activity: optimal challenge, clarity of goals, unambiguous feedback, a
sense of control, heightened concentration, awareness, loss of self, time transformation,
and enjoyment. Yet, skateboarders’ descriptions of a flow experience focused on four
themes: peak performance, an intense subjective experience, heightened concentration, and
transcendence. It may be the case that challenge, goal clarity and feedback are a common
part of the skateboarding experience to the point that skateboarders do not recognize them
as a part of the flow experience.
On the other hand, this difference may be reconciled if the original nine dimensions are
reconsidered as constituting a set of antecedents and flow characteristics (Csikszentmihalyi
Intrinsic Motivation and Flow in Skateboarding
et al. 2005). We asked skateboarders to describe the flow experience, but did not ask about
antecedents. Therefore, they may have only described the experience itself without con-
sidering antecedents.
In conclusion, we began this study as an investigation of intrinsic motivation in a
spontaneous and natural context. Our results suggested being intrinsically motivated can be
a subjective experience that is supported by having the freedom to set challenges and
pursue them. The results also indicated that there is a relationship between intrinsic
motivation and flow. Conquering challenges required concentration and effort, and the
resultant success may culminate in a flow episode that was described as peak performance,
elation, and transcendence. Continued research should further our understanding of the
relationship between intrinsic motivation and flow.
3.1 Limitations
Although the methods chosen provide a rich description of the subjective experiences of
skateboarders, there are a number of limitations. First, the sample was randomly chosen but
the location may have been a limiting factor. Given the public nature of the venue, the age
and skill level of skateboarders at the park may have deterred those who were intimidated,
younger, or less skilled. By far-and-away the skateboarders we observed were mastery
oriented; although we looked for individuals displaying failure avoidance we couldn’t find
them. They may have felt inferior to those at the park and avoided it. Would they exhibit
the same characteristics and respond to the questions the same way as those in the
skateboard park?
Second, we only studied skateboarders, which may raise questions about generaliz-
However, much of the research on flow has concentrated on single groups of
individuals, in activities such as figure skating (Jackson 1992), dancing (Hefferon and Ollis
2006), acting (Martin and Cutler 2002), and computer hacking (Voiskounsky and Smy-
slova 2003). There are similarities between the responses of skateboarders and participants
in other studies.
Third, ethnography is, by its nature, interpretative and the data collection and analyses
reflect the theoretical biases of the researchers. These data were collected and analyzed
through the lens of self-determination and flow theories. Questions were framed based on
theoretical descriptions and explanations in self-determination and flow theories. Although
attempts were made to ensure the trustworthiness of the results, other theoretical lenses
could result in different interpretations.
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T. Seifertm, C. Hedderson
... With the attainment of these smaller goals, such as learning to ollie, then kick-flip, and then varial flip (a 180˚flip of the board), a skateboarder can build their confidence and ''hype'' themselves up to continue the push towards ultimately landing the 360 flip. Although these types of goal-setting strategies are commonly taught within traditional sports, action sports such as skateboarding and snowboarding rarely, if ever, have coaches or formal instructions (Seifert & Hedderson, 2009) that would include such participatively set or assigned goals. Thus, the identification that the current sample of skateboarders and snowboarders perhaps utilize self-set goals is noteworthy for aspiring action sport athletes and potential coaches or consultants working with such athletes. ...
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The present study aimed to expand the current knowledge of psychological skills usage within athletes of action sports by exploring the use of imagery and self-talk within skateboarders and snowboarders. Skateboarders and snowboarders (N 5 74) completed the Athletic Coping Skills Inventory (ACSI-28; Smith et al., 1995), the Self-Talk Questionnaire (S-TQ) for sports (Zervas et al., 2007), and the Sport Imagery Questionnaire (SIQ; Hall et al., 1998). Results indicated that participants scored significantly higher than reported norms of traditional athletes (Smith et al., 1995) on the coping with adversity and goal-setting/mental preparation subscales of the ACSI-28, and to a similar degree to traditional athletes on the remaining subscales. However, participants scored significantly lower on the total score of the ACSI-28 than previously reported action sports athletes (Young & Knight, 2014). Participants scored significantly higher than reported norms of traditional athletes on the cognitive functional and motivational functional subscales of the S-TQ. On the SIQ, participants scored significantly lower than reported norms for traditional athletes (Hall et al., 2005) on the MG-M subscale, while scoring similarly to reported norms on the CG, CS, MS, and MG-A subscales. Results of the present study confirm that action sports athletes utilize psychological skills to a degree similar to that of traditional athletes, and that skateboarders and snowboarders specifically include the use of imagery and self-talk within their psychological skills arsenal.
... With the attainment of these smaller goals, such as learning to ollie, then kick-flip, and then varial flip (a 180˚flip of the board), a skateboarder can build their confidence and ''hype'' themselves up to continue the push towards ultimately landing the 360 flip. Although these types of goal-setting strategies are commonly taught within traditional sports, action sports such as skateboarding and snowboarding rarely, if ever, have coaches or formal instructions (Seifert & Hedderson, 2009) that would include such participatively set or assigned goals. Thus, the identification that the current sample of skateboarders and snowboarders perhaps utilize self-set goals is noteworthy for aspiring action sport athletes and potential coaches or consultants working with such athletes. ...
... I've got lots of stuff to sort out but when I'm free running, I don't think about all my work and stuff, I just think about this. Bryan and Aaron's statements also reveal a euphoric, carefree reaction to their immediate experience, echoing findings by Seifert and Hedderson (2011), who emphasized this very upbeat psychological benefit of playing outdoors. Not Being Valued: "Before We Skated, When We Quit, We Got into Loads of Trouble" Risk taking and breaking the law have been considered part of what some youth groups, such as graffiti artists, find appealing about their activities. ...
... This study adopts a qualitative approach via an in-depth case study of an existing app and semi-structured interviews through a task-based activity. Seifert and Hedderson (2010) argued that interviews could provide a more vivid interpretation of flow experience perceptions. Semi-structured interviews are often used in earlier research for examining flow experiences (Nakamura and Csikszentmihalyi 2014). ...
Augmented reality (AR) try-on services have been proven to enhance customer engagement and purchase intentions by enabling users to experience the sense of flow. While few studies focused on the design principles of mobile AR services, little has been done regarding the role of flow in consumer experience whilst interacting with try-on services. This chapter reviews the current design principles of mobile AR and examines its influence in consumer flow state. Through a task-based semi-structured interview with consumers (n=9), it was possible to observe that all participants did not enter the flow state due to lack of perceived control and familiarity with the technology. Finally, this chapter provides recommendations for enhancing the flow experience of mobile AR try-on services. It is expected that this chapter might be of interest to retailers and researchers willing to explore mobile AR effectiveness through try-on-services such as the virtual fitting room (VFR).
This study explores the rich spatial-cultural phenomena of street skateboarding and graffiti in Jakarta. The enduring appeal of both activities lies in their ability to inspire creativity, foster subcultural identities, and leave a lasting impact on culture. Through interviews and detailed observations by the first author, an active skateboarder, the research investigates the motivations, challenges, and cultural significance of skateboarding and graffiti. It examines their appropriation of urban spaces, exploring how they navigate local norms and regulations. The study also uncovers the social dynamics and subcultural communities that have emerged around these activities, shedding light on their role in shaping individual and collective identities within Jakarta’s urban fabric. The findings highlight the positive responses from the surrounding community, the strong attachment of the youths to their preferred locations, their constant adaptation and development of skills, and how they express their unique identities.
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The aim of this study is to review the literature on lifestyle sports and lifestyle sport contexts with regard to the developmental potential they may represent in young people’s everyday lives. The review applies a relational developmental systems approach to youth development. The eligibility criteria are based on the phenomenon of interest and outcomes. Hence, we include studies examining the associations between young people performing lifestyle sports and potential developmental outcomes: mental, biological, social, and behavioral. The present study shows that the volume of research on informal lifestyle sport is rather extensive and that studies on the way these activity contexts may affect developmental processes in youth are diverse and wide ranging. The studies suggest that performing lifestyle sports may have several beneficial health and skills outcomes. Furthermore, positive associations are suggested between involvement in lifestyle sport contexts such as climbing, snowboarding, parkour, tricking, kiting, and surfing and (a) mental outcomes such joy, happiness, freedom, euphoria, motivation, self-efficacy, and well-being; (b) social outcomes such as gender equality, network building, social inclusion, interaction, friendship; and (c) behavioral outcomes such as identity, creativity, and expressions of masculinity and/or femininity. The review performed indicates that lifestyle sport contexts are flexible according to needs and desires that exist among the practitioners and that the human and democratic origins of these contexts make them supportive for positive movement experiences and for positive youth development. The findings have implications for PE teachers, social workers, policymakers, sport organizations, and urban architecture, in that providing lifestyle sport opportunities in the everyday lives of young people will foster a holistic development in a positive way.
This study uses self-determination and flow theories as a theoretical framework to investigate the role of need for competence satisfaction (NCS) and autonomous motivation (AM) in balance between challenge and skills (BCS) and dispositional flow (DF) in international junior elite tennis players. A sample of 114 (62 girls and 52 boys) junior elite players (15.62 ± 1.36 years) representing 24 countries competing in International Tennis Federation junior tournaments completed measures on the NCS using the Basic Needs Satisfaction in Sport Scale, AM with the Sport Motivation Scale and DF State scale to measure the BCS and their DF. Values of Cronbach α >.80 and the rhô Jöreskog coefficients were shown to be satisfactory and >0.89. The independent sample t-test analysis revealed no significant gender differences in any of them ( p > .05). Simple regression analysis showed that there was a significant positive linear correlation between BCS and DF (r = .46; F = 29.31, p < .001). Multiple regression analysis indicated that AM and NCS explained 50.8% of the variance of BCS (F = 57.30, p < .001). Canonical correlation analysis indicated that a lack of NCS and AM was associated with a lack of DF and BCS. Wilks’ lambda = .38, F = 34.11, p < .001, accounted for 99% (r c = .79) of the overlapping variance. It can be concluded that NCS and AM contribute effectively to the BCS and then to DF in the sample studied.
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Flow can improve the quality of life and promote personal growth as well as many positive psychological outcomes however research literature showed that there is no valid and reliable instrument for unique Iranian culture. The main aim of this study is to evaluate the psychometric properties of the Flow Inventory for high school students. The population of this research includes all high school students in Ray in 2017 - 2018 academic years. The total number of the participants was 464 which were selected by the random cluster sampling method. They answered to Flow Short Scale by Rheinberg, Vollmeyer, and Engeser. Exploratory factor analysis extracts 2 subscales which were confirmed by first order confirmatory factor analysis. Second order confirmatory factor analysis displayed that these two components can be categorized in one concept which is flow. In sum, we can say that Flow Short Scale has suitable validity and reliability among high school students.
In this dissertation, a case study is formed about the sport of rallying, and in particular, the World Rally Championship (WRC) and its media strategy. Traditionally, media rights have been sold to free-to-air television or pay-television networks in individual markets across the world. The premise became to sell the media rights to a sporting contest to the highest bidder, who would recoup their money through advertising and subscriptions to audiences. It is a system that brought great financial rewards to many sports. However, not all could make this model work. The WRC was one such sport as it was run over several days and in non-centralised geographic locations. It ensured the sport was not television-friendly and therefore could not generate significant media-driven financialisation. After a change in ownership, the WRC Promoter GmbH was formed and in 2013 a new media strategy was created, and then reinforced in 2018. They launched an over-the-top streaming service called WRC+ All Live. To do this, the WRC Promoter GmbH abandoned the notion of selling its product exclusively and primarily to a television partner, rather it went with a direct-to-consumer streaming service. The product available across the world without geoblocking restrictions. Along with the stream, the media rights are sold on a non-exclusive basis meaning that multiple media companies in the same marketplace can air the sport at the same time. It resulted in another shift for the WRC Promoter GmbH as they transitioned from a sports management concern to a sports media company with total responsibility for the media. The shift affected the fans as it changed their relationship with the sport and its media product and for sports media researchers, as the generally accepted sports rights model was abandoned. The case study, therefore, focuses aspects pertaining to decisions made, with regards to the streaming media product. The case study seeks to understand the effect that the change had on the economic aspects of the sport. As the media product has become of vital importance to the financial models of many sports, understanding how the WRC+ All Live and the effect on media-driven financialisation is the first area to be explored. It is followed by understanding how the shift from selling media rights to external broadcasters to that of becoming a media broadcaster in their own right and how that has affected the way the sport is operated. Finally, the way the fans engage with the sport under the new media delivery methods is understood. The streaming product had several effects on fan engagement. The first was that fans across the world could watch the same show at the same time. Secondly, the sport was delivered live for the first time, in what was a dramatic increase in programming, going from just a couple of hours of highlights per round, to more than 25 hours of live coverage. As the sport launched the product, it was unclear how the fans would react, and therefore understanding that reaction is important. The case of the WRC is important to understand, as technology and fan behaviours are changing which results in different opportunities for many niche sports in their media rights and media delivery models. The change to the media service and the WRC+ All Live is understood through multiple theoretical lenses. The first is that of the media-sport triangle. The triangle was conceived to help explain the financial and cultural success of some sports, with the relationship between sport, the media, and business. With popular sports on linear television, a culturally popular sport could be sold to television stations as they wanted the content and the audiences. Those audiences could be financialised through subscriptions or advertising, for example. However, the model must change for niche sports undertaking a direct-to-consumer model, where targeted audiences, and their attention can be commodified. The notions of digital plenitude are explored as internet-enabled technologies allow sports to undertake streaming media and with it, many barriers to delivery no longer exist. However, to create and distribute a streaming service requires a sport to rapidly professionalise and create an organisational culture to allow such a change to occur and become normalised in the organisation. Though the history of sports on television, a broadcast company has, generally, been the intermediary between the sport and the fans, providing their own services to create a product that was acceptable to these audiences. While elite sport has utilised professionals to play the game and to manage the sport, they now needed professionalise in new areas of sport media. Here, the WRC Promoter GmbH culturally enabled sport-entrepreneurial characteristics to take place that allowed a revolutionary media model to be created and normalised within its structures. Finally, the relationship with the fans is explored as without the fan having a willingness to pay for the service, and enjoying the mediated sport, the streaming product cannot obtain sufficient financial success. To ensure that sufficient reliable information could be found for the exploratory case study, a three-sided methodological approach was formed. The first method utilised was expert interviews. In total 27 expert interviews were conducted with key stakeholders in the sport, like senior managers, on-air talent and key people involved in media sales for the sport. Through these interviews, a complex and deep understanding of the decision-making processes could be formed. Importantly, the impact of the change of the media product to the sporting product itself could be understood, enabling a clear picture regarding the pressures, successes and necessary changes that were made to the sport to emerge. However, it was important to consolidate the validity of these findings through other methods. Observational research at nine WRC events over four years provided insight into how WRC events operated in different regions and how the media influenced the operation and standardisation of each event. Finally, desk research provided historical perspectives on decisions that were made prior to the research taking place, and to inform the research on decisions and attitudes throughout the execution of the case study. These theoretical perspectives and research techniques provided many key outcomes. It became clear that the transition away from traditional media strategies altered the power relationship between the sport, broadcasters and fans. The sport now guaranteed its position in every market across the world and its direct relationship with the fans. However, the culture and history of the sport played an important role in what actions the WRC Promoter GmbH could undertake. It was not a case of having a new owner, and therefore they could impose their own culture on the sport. To ensure fan enjoyment, the historical element of the event, the media product and the way the sport was run needed to be maintained. As the streaming market continues to develop, more niche sports seek to control their own media futures, and as promotion rights to sports are being bought and sold, the outcomes from the WRC+ All Live product can contain important lessons for other sports, and researchers into the future.
What constitutes enjoyment of life? Optimal Experience offers a comprehensive survey of theoretical and empirical investigations of the 'flow' experience, a desirable or optimal state of consciousness that enhances a person's psychic state. The authors show the diverse contexts and circumstances in which flow is reported in different cultures, and describe its positive emotional impacts. They reflect on ways in which the ability to experience flow affects work satisfaction, academic success, and the overall quality of life
What constitutes enjoyment of life? Optimal Experience offers a comprehensive survey of theoretical and empirical investigations of the 'flow' experience, a desirable or optimal state of consciousness that enhances a person's psychic state. The authors show the diverse contexts and circumstances in which flow is reported in different cultures, and describe its positive emotional impacts. They reflect on ways in which the ability to experience flow affects work satisfaction, academic success, and the overall quality of life
I: Background.- 1. An Introduction.- 2. Conceptualizations of Intrinsic Motivation and Self-Determination.- II: Self-Determination Theory.- 3. Cognitive Evaluation Theory: Perceived Causality and Perceived Competence.- 4. Cognitive Evaluation Theory: Interpersonal Communication and Intrapersonal Regulation.- 5. Toward an Organismic Integration Theory: Motivation and Development.- 6. Causality Orientations Theory: Personality Influences on Motivation.- III: Alternative Approaches.- 7. Operant and Attributional Theories.- 8. Information-Processing Theories.- IV: Applications and Implications.- 9. Education.- 10. Psychotherapy.- 11. Work.- 12. Sports.- References.- Author Index.
This book addresses the richness and depth of our intimate relationships and especially those moments when we come to see ourselves and the other person in a new way. In such moments we realize that however much we are influenced by heredity and upbringing, we are also agents with the capacity for openness and transcendence.
We agree with the general thrust of Carver and Scheier’s position on self-regulation and applaud their important effort to integrate complexity models in their synthesis.
Over and over, investigators have found self-esteem to be central in a broad network of constructs associated with motivation, performance, and well-being. Esteeming oneself—thinking well of oneself—has often been found to relate to more effective behavior and better adjustment than has low self-regard.