Goal orientation and well-being in college athletes: The importance of athletic social connectedness

Heidi A. Wayment, Andrew Schrack Walters

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The present study examined the ability of an interpersonal construct called athletic connectedness to mediate the relationship between task and ego goal orientations and well-being. We operationalised athletic social connectedness as a sense of social belonging and sense of connection with teammates. We hypothesised that athletic social connectedness would be positively associated with task goals, negatively associated with ego goals, and would at least partially mediate the relationship between achievement goals and well-being. We administered questionnaires to female (N = 106; mean age = 20.47, SD = 1.12) and male (N = 100; mean age = 20.95, SD = 1.21) NCAA Division III college athletes. We tested our hypothesised model using structural equation modelling, which included testing a measurement model that specified four latent variables and then comparing the estimates generated by our hypothesised model with our data. We also tested three alternative models and found our hypothesised model to fit best. As predicted, there were significant indirect effects of task and ego motivation on well-being through athletic connectedness, demonstrating formal evidence of mediation. The r2 coefficient indicated that the model explained 30% of the variance in well-being, a moderate effect size (Cohen, 1988). Discussion focuses on the importance of considering interpersonal constructs as a way to improve our understanding of relationship between task and ego goal orientations to well-being in athletes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2114-2120
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Sports Sciences
Issue number21
StatePublished - Nov 2 2017


  • Task motivation
  • ego motivation
  • quiet ego
  • social connectedness
  • well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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