Impact of claimed self-handicapping on cohesion and perceived collective efficacy in basketball

Guillaume R. Coudevylle *, Stephane Sinnapah *, Elodie Cairo *, Cedric Charles-Charlery *, Olivier Hue * and Christophe Gernigon **

(*) University of French West Indies, Department of Sport Sciences, Laboratory ACTES (EA 3596), Pointe-à-Pitre, France
(**) Montpellier University, Department of Sport Sciences, Laboratoire Epsylon EA Dynamique des Capacités Humaines et des Conduites de Santé, Montpellier, France


R. Coudevylle, G., Sinnapah, S., Cairo, E., Charles-Charlery, C., Hue, O., Gernigon, C. (2018). Impact of claimed self-handicapping on cohesion and perceived collective efficacy in basketball. International Journal of Sport Psychology, 49(4), 311-326. doi:10.7352/IJSP.2018.49.311


This study examined whether claimed self-handicapping influences cohesion and perceived collective efficacy of teammates during a basketball game. Sport sciences students were asked to imagine they were part of a basketball team viewed on an edited video clip of a real game. At the beginning of the first two quarters, virtual teammates declared either self-handicaps (SH) or made neutral statements, depending on the experimental session. After each of these video sequences, the participants were asked to answer questions designed to measure their perceptions of cohesion and collective efficacy. The results indicated that both types of cohesion and perceived collective efficacy were reduced by claimed self-handicapping from the other members of the team. These findings, observed using hypothetical situation, suggest that claimed self-handicapping can significantly harm the process of building team cohesion.

Keywords: Excuse, Performance, Psychological state, Self-protection, Social cohesion, Task cohesion