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Dr Alister McCormick

Senior Lecturer

School of Sport, Health and Wellbeing

01752 636700

amccormick@marjon.ac.uk


ALISTER MCCORMICK

Teaching

I teach psychology and its applications. I enjoy teaching students how psychology can be applied to sport and exercise contexts to achieve valuable outcomes relating to performance, health, and wellbeing. I also enjoy teaching research methods, as they underpin the knowledge base within our profession.


Research

My research focuses on two main interests.

First, how can psychology be applied to improve the performances of endurance athletes, such as competitive runners, cyclists, and triathletes? As an example, the first piece of research that I published from my PhD was a literature review of the published research that has examined the effects of psychological interventions on endurance performance. In this review, we found considerable support that learning psychological skills such as goal setting, imagery, and self-talk can improve the performances of endurance athletes. We also found that external motivators, such as head-to-head competition and verbal encouragement, which can be applied practically by coaches, can have substantial benefits on performance. In addition, we found that some psychological factors can have a detrimental effect on performance. In particular, engaging in prolonged and demanding tasks can cause mental fatigue, which leads to endurance exercise feeling even more strenuous.

Second, how can psychology be applied to support people who are new to running and other forms of endurance exercise? Running, cycling, and swimming are healthy activities, but people can find it hard to maintain these forms of exercise when they first take them up. I am currently studying how people become committed to running, in order to identify ways of supporting new runners.


Publications

Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

Aldous-Granby, J., & McCormick, A. (2018). Effects of clothing perception on psychological factors and tactical intentions in fencing. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1080/1612197X.2018.1519840

McCormick, A., Anstiss, P. A., & Lavallee, D. (2018). Endurance athletes’ current and preferred ways of getting psychological guidance. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1080/1612197X.2018.1486874

McCormick, A., Meijen, C., Anstiss, P., & Jones, H.S. (2018). Self-regulation in Endurance sports: theory, research, and practice. International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1080/1750984X.2018.1469161

McCormick, A., Coyle, M., & Gibbs-Nicholls, S. (2018). Sharing good practice in sport and exercise psychology. Sport and Exercise Psychology Review, 14(1), 47-64.

McCormick, A., Meijen, C., & Marcora, S. (2018). Effects of a motivational self-talk intervention for endurance athletes completing an ultramarathon. The Sport Psychologist, 32, 42-50. https://doi.org/10.1123/tsp.2017-0018

McCormick, A., Meijen, C., & Marcora, S. (2018). Psychological demands experienced by recreational endurance athletes. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 16, 415-430. https://doi.org/10.1080/1612197X.2016.1256341

Edwards, A. M., & McCormick, A. (2017). Time perception, pacing and exercise intensity: maximal exercise distorts the perception of time. Physiology & Behavior, 180, 98-102. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.physbeh.2017.08.009

McCormick, A., Meijen, C., & Marcora, S. (2015). Psychological determinants of whole-body endurance performance. Sports Medicine, 45, 997-1015. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40279-015-0319-6

McCormick, A., & Meijen, C. (2015). A lesson learned in time: Advice shared by experienced sport psychologists. Sport and Exercise Psychology Review, 11(1), 43-54.

McCormick, A. (2014). Using solution-focused brief therapy with an amateur football team: A trainee's case study. Sport and Exercise Psychology Review, 10(3), 45-57.

 

Book Chapters

McCormick, A., & Hatzigeorgiadis, A. (2019). Self-talk and endurance performance. In C. Meijen (Ed.), Endurance performance in sport: Psychological theory and interventions (pp. 153-167). Abingdon, England: Routledge.

Meijen, C., & McCormick, A. (2019). Pursuing the next challenges: Directions for research on the psychology of endurance performance. In C. Meijen (Ed.), Endurance performance in sport: Psychological theory and interventions (pp. 212-224). Abingdon, England: Routledge.

My publications can be downloaded from https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Alister_Mccormick


Expert Membership of professional bodies

  • Chartered Sport and Exercise Psychologist (British Psychological Society)
  • Registered Practitioner Psychologist (Health and Care Professions Council)
  • Fellow of Advance HE


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