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The emphasis in Sport and Exercise Psychology is intended to assist graduate students in better understanding the cognitive, affective, and behavioral precursors to and consequences of effective performances in the physical domain, with a primary focus on sport, exercise, and physical activity. Through coursework, research, and applied experience, individuals will work toward mastery of philosophies and major theories related to psychological wellness, motivation, performance skills, and intervention delivery. Emphasis on qualitative, quantitative, and mixed-methods research is incorporated. Graduate students interested in pursuing a doctoral degree in sport and exercise psychology, coaching, fitness instruction, wellness guidance, or other related fields are encouraged to apply.
The concentration in Sport and Exercise Psychology is led by Dr. Tucker Readdy. Graduate students who are advised by Tucker can expect to complete the Sport Psychology (KIN 5536), Exercise Psychology (KIN 5537), and Sport Sociology (KIN 5035) classes that he teaches. In addition, learners are encouraged to undertake complimentary courses that are offered in Psychology, Counseling, Qualitative Research Methods, and other related fields. Finally, students often add internships and independent study courses to fulfill their program of study.
Since joining the University of Wyoming in 2010, Dr. Readdy has developed a line of research that is focused on the psychological and sociological experiences of coaches and athletes within the collegiate sport context. Tucker is particularly interested in the synergy between the scholarship related to self-determination theory (Deci & Ryan, 2985, 2000), coaching pathos and orchestration (Jones & Wallace, 2005) and reflexive practice (Gilbert & Trudel, 2001). Much of his work has involved collaborations with Dr. Johannes Raabe (West Virginia University), Dr. Rebecca Zakrajsek (University of Tennessee), and Dr. Oliver Höner (University of Tübingen, Germany). Graduate students are encouraged to formulate thesis and Plan B topics that align with Dr. Readdy’s areas of interest; however, they can anticipate developing their own research questions and methodologies, applying for funding when appropriate, and eventually publishing their work.
Much of Tucker’s scholarship is informed by the sport psychology consulting services he provides to a number of athletes, coaches, and sport teams at UW. Dr. Readdy has assisted previous UW coaches Dave Christensen (football; three seasons, including 2011 Mountain West Coach of the Year honors and New Mexico Bowl appearance) and Larry Shyatt (men’s basketball; three seasons, including a 2015 Mountain West Tournament Championship and NCAA Tournament appearance). In addition, he has current engagements with Allen Edwards (men’s basketball; four seasons, including a 2017 Collegiate Basketball Invitational Tournament championship) and Chad Callihan (volleyball, five seasons, including National Invitational Volleyball Championship appearances in 2017 and 2018). Graduate students are often invited to observe Tucker’s professional practice to help cultivate their own research or applied interests.
Learners who have been advised by Dr. Readdy have achieved notable success in a variety of fields. Graduates include Dr. Johannes Raabe (Assistant Professor, West Virginia University), Sam King, (J.D.,University of Wyoming), Dan Georgalas (Associate Head Coach, University of Wyoming Volleyball), Courtney Chacon (Assistant Coach, Western Colorado Volleyball), and Kelly Ibele (Coordinator of Recreational Sports, Boise State University). People interested in pursuing the Certified Mental Performance Coach qualification offered through the Association for Applied Sport Psychology will be able to obtain all of the necessary requirements.
Dr. Readdy completed his Ph.D. in Exercise and Sport Science at Oregon State University in 2009. Working with Dr. Vicki Ebbeck, Tucker’s dissertation was a critical analysis of the popular television show The Biggest Loser. Dr. Readdy finished his M.A. at San Diego State University, where he was advised by Dr. Susan Levy. Originally from Sacramento, CA, Tucker earned his B.A. at the University of California, Berkeley, where he majored in Molecular and Cellular Biology.
Tucker Readdy, PhD