The development of a theoretical model describing and explaining group flow

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In simple terms, the phenomenon of group flow can be outlined by a situation in which a group appears to be a single unit during the accomplishment of a task and in which it seems like there is a total understanding between the group members (e.g., Hart & Di Blasi, 2015; Sawyer, 2006). Existing theoretical approaches only describe and explain single aspects of the group flow phenomenon, partially in selected life domains only. Therefore, our aim was to develop a context-unspecific comprehensive theoretical model of group flow. In line with an integrative definition of group flow (cf. Pels, Kleinert, & Mennigen, 2018), our model describes the state of group flow as a balance in a group’s behaviour (e.g., synchronisation of all group members), competence (e.g., integration of the skills of all group members) and state of mind (e.g., collective expectancies). This balance can occur due to symmetry (e.g., having the same goals) and complementarity (e.g., the different skills of all group members complement each other). We assume that the overall foundation for the balance in the three aspects (i.e., behaviour, competence, state of mind) is a positive relationship between group members, building upon classical work from Heider (1958). For future research, we suggest the development of a research paradigm that can be used for a series of experiments in which parts of the model get systematically evaluated by manipulating them as independent variables.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBuilding the future of sport and exercise psychology : Abstract book
Publication date07.2019
Pages138
Publication statusPublished - 07.2019

ID: 4367425

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