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Stay Calm and Plank On: An analysis of verbal interventions to increase task persistence in runners
AuthorEncinias, Ashlie J.
AdvisorHayes, Steven C.
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Covert verbal behavior is often said to play a key role in the success of athletic performance. Not much research of this kind has been completed in the field of behavior analysis. Acceptance and Commitment Training (ACT) and Relational Frame Theory (RFT) provide tools to study this aspect of athleticism. This study investigates the use of two ACT intervention components, acceptance and defusion, on increasing runners’ perseverance holding a forearm plank. A within-subject, alternating treatments design was used to examine runners across a range of athletic fitness to observe how acceptance and defusion techniques might effect a difficult training task given various levels of athleticism. Graphical and inferential statistical analyses suggested that both intervention conditions increased all three classes of runners’ plank holds over their baseline performance.