Date of Award
Master of Science in Exercise Science
Doctor Brenda Davies
PURPOSE: Personality profiling with athletes has been used to identify ideal candidates for high-level performance, program more effectively, and develop personality traits that might prove beneficial. A significant amount of research has been targeted using the Big Five Personality traits which are neuroticism, agreeableness, conscientiousness, openness, and extraversion. Self-efficacy has also been studied heavily within elite athletes. However, the personality profiles of elite Powerlifters and Strongman/woman have not been developed or studied. The purpose of this investigation is to identify a general personality profile of elite Powerlifting and Strongman/woman athletes. The secondary aim is to compare the personality profile of the competitive weightlifters against those from athletes competing in team and individual sports.
METHODS: Forty-eight qualified surveys were received from elite Powerlifting and Strongman/woman athletes. The online survey included a demographic questionnaire, the Big Five Inventory, and the General Self-efficacy Scale. One sample t-test was used to compare results against other high-level individual and team sport athletes from previous studies.
RESULTS: Mean scores across the Big Five Personality traits were recorded: Extraversion 26.10 ± 6.64, Agreeableness 33.77 ± 4.65, Conscientiousness 36.58 ± 5.37, Neuroticism 20.19 ± 6.64, Openness 35.52 ± 5.34. General Self-Efficacy was scored as 35.42 ± 3.35. Statistically significant differences were found in the areas of agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, and self-efficacy when compared to team and individual sport athletes.
CONCLUSION: The study established a baseline personality profile for elite competitive weightlifters similar to recorded personality profiles of elite athletes in other sports. Significant differences with higher levels of agreeableness, conscientiousness, and self-efficacy, and lower levels of neuroticism add to the limited body of knowledge surrounding these athletes. Greater insight into the personality profile of competitive weightlifters could prove helpful when making programming decisions, possibly aid in identifying those predisposed to reach elite status and direct an athlete’s focus on personality areas most important for their development.