Psychology of sports fans

sports fan community

Journal of Social Psychology, In addition, highly identified fans tend to be socialized to sports early and view it not just as a game but also as a nostalgic or emotional experience. After measuring levels of sports team identification and psychological well-being, he found that the results are correlational but consistent: Higher identification with a team is associated with significantly lower levels of alienation, loneliness, and higher levels of collective self-esteem and positive emotion.

Where else in the world can you just pick an enemy and just hate them?

sports fan anxiety

Before watching his Cubs win the World Series, Glassman remembers many other times when his team fell short from the heartbreaking losses against the Padres in and then the Marlins in Examining the potential causal relationship between sport team identification and psychological wellbeing.

Bernhardt may have opened the door on an important physiological dimension of fan behavior, but a broad conceptual framework explaining the human compulsion to watch other people play games—a condition that affects approximately 60 percent of Americans—was already coming into focus.

Testosterone levels typically peak shortly after waking each day, then drop about 35 percent by bedtime. Yet the team cultivates an overwhelming fan base and maintains a legendary bleacher-section community.

The mind of a sports fan

Fans showing their devotion to a sport is not something new. In order to really reap the well-being benefits of fan identification, it needs to be a central part of your overall social identity. Daniel Wann, a psychologist at Murray State University in Kentucky, has done several studies showing that an intense interest in a team can buffer people from depression and foster feelings of self-worth. Rather than exclusively trying to attract new fans, they are attempting to build longer lasting, closer relationships with existing ones. Sports have always been a part of society, so to has the relationship between teams and their fans. Seeing another person wearing the team emblem on a shirt allows for an instant connection. Cubs fans got to enjoy the spoils of being on the winning side of their own. The year was This newfound identity of the fan not only inspires them, but also instills a sense of loyalty and respect in them. In watching the action, people do indeed identify with teams, and for some, team identification is both important and powerful to their sense of self. Moreover, some are truly convinced that their participation in ritual superstition impacts the outcome, says Wann. It's like therapy. Those who are highly identified with their teams are particularly motivated to use these coping strategies when their teams perform poorly.

But Paul Bernhardt, an aspiring young behavioral scientist at Georgia State University, was determined. Brian J.

role of fans in sports
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