An Experimental Examination of the Cohesion-Performance Relationship in an Interactive Team Sport


This study experimentally examined the cohesion-performance relationship. Undergraduate male volunteers were randomly assigned to 3-man basketball teams and teams were randomly assigned to receive either a cohesion-producing or a cohesion-reducing manipulation before competing. Level of cohesion and individual as well as team performance variables were assessed prior to and after each game. The manipulation successfully created teams higher and lower in cohesion. The results indicate that cohesion had a negligible impact on team performance. A stronger effect was found for the impact of performance on cohesion with winning teams having higher levels of cohesion than losing teams. These findings are consistent with previous literature and lend experimental support to the conclusion that performance has more impact on cohesion than cohesion has on performance. © 2000 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Publication Title

Journal of Applied Sport Psychology