Locke, E. A., & Bryan, J. F. (1966). Cognitive aspects of psychomotor performance: The effects of performance goals on level of performance. Journal of Applied Psychology, 50, 286-291.

Specific but difficult standards or goals result in better performance. However, the difficulty must be relative to the levels appropriate for each athlete. Often a coach's perception of "difficulty" is different to that of athletes.

The expression of goals has to be specific so that what is aspired to can be clearly understood, observed, and evaluated. When language is vague it does not direct explicit behavior.

Implication. When goals are determined they should be specifically stated in behavioral terms and viewed by the athletes as being difficult (challenging).

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