Athlete Acculturation and Acute Cultural Adaptation: Expanding Knowledge from the Conceptual, through the Empirical, to the Practical

Robert Schinke, Laurentian University, Canada
Kerry McGannon, Laurentian University, Canada
Tatiana Ryba, Aarhus University, Denmark
Natalia Stambulova, Halmstad University, Sweden

Theme: Social and cultural diversity

Program ID: SYM-08

Presentation: October 3, 2013 8:15 am - 9:30 am

Room: Elmwood


Within this symposium, the presenters open up discussions spanning the acculturation and acute cultural adaptation of elite athletes traveling across national borders. It has been found that athletes are progressively crossing national borders, either through relocation or as shorter-term acute cultural adaptation experiences whilst they train and compete in a host country (Kontos, 2009). To present, sport psychology scholars have considered this burgeoning topics based upon their own applied experiences (e.g. Kontos & Arguello, 2005; Kontos & Breland-Noble, 2002). Most recently, there is an emerging scholarship where authors have taken up the topics of acculturation and acute cultural adaptation. The prevalence of these discussions has been supported by research with varsity (Bartolacci, 2010; Yukelson, 2008), national team (Ryba, Haapanen, Mosek, & Ng, 2012; Schinke, Yukelson, Bartolacci, Battochio, & Johnstone, 2011), and professional athletes (Schinke, Gauthier, Dubuc, & Crowder, 2007; Battochio, Schinke, McGannon, Tenenbaum, Yukelson, & Crowder, 2013). This symposium is comprised of four presentations. Within presentation one, the conceptual landscape of acculturation and sport psychology scholarship is overviewed. The second presentation frames athlete acculturation and acute cultural adaptation within the career transition literature, expanding what needs to be known about athlete international travel through this second literary lens. The third presentation features data from a funded immigrant elite athlete project, utilizing interpretive thematic analysis and discourse analysis to view a narrative of fluidity as athletes move between home and host worldviews in their acculturation processes. The fourth presentation reveals a research project where shorter-term acute cultural adaptation is experienced by elite swimmers. The first presenter, serving as moderator, will then coordinate discussions about how what is known from the theoretical and conceptual transfers into practice for professionals in the field of sport psychology and coaching.

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