Implicit measures of beliefs about sport ability in swimming and basketball

  • Mascret Nicolas
  • Falconetti Jean-Louis
  • Cury François


Sport ability may be seen as relatively stable, genetically determined and not easily modified by practice, or as increasable with training, work and effort. Using the Implicit Association Test (IAT), the purpose of the present study is to examine whether the practice of a particular sport (swimming or basketball) can influence automatic beliefs about sport ability in these two sports. The IAT scores evidence that swimmers and basketball players automatically and implicitly associate their own sport with training rather than genetics, whereas non-sportspersons have no significant automatic association. This result is strengthened when perceived competence and intrinsic motivation in swimming or basketball are high.