Results: BJJ Psychology Part I

The previous posts have dealt with some (relatively) objective demographic measures but with this post I'm moving into some of the more subjective (& thus controversial) psychological data. This week I'm covering data on motivations for training & the relative proportion of individualist & collectivist personality traits (technically referred to as allocentric & idiocentric). Motivations were recorded by having people rank each item in order of importance and individualism/collectivism was measured by a popular 16 item scale (devised by the cross cultural psychologists Triandis & Gelfand).

The findings reveal a relatively balanced mix of personality traits amongst the BJJ community but are also lower on the individualism scores than is typical for a US heavy sample. This suggests that being part of the BJJ community pulls people into a more collective mindset. Another interesting result is that the most competitive and individualistic trait is actually the weakest orientation indicating that although BJJ is ultimately a competition between individuals, it is very much still a team sport! This also corresponds with the fact that 'Having Fun' was the No.1 motivation for training.

When dealing with the more subjective data its important not only to remember the limitations of the sample (i.e. 727 people, predominately North American males using BJJ/MMA forums) but also to note that psychological scales are often subject to debate/differing interpretations. To help address this when designing the study, I tried to select only well-validated and commonly used psychological scales but even so for all measures reported I'll be including links so those who are interested can take a look at the various scales in greater detail.

As usual, if anyone has any further questions about the data (or the scales!) feel free to leave a comment or contact me directly and I'll be happy to provide more information/answer any questions.

And finally, sorry for the delay in getting this post up, my supervisor was over visiting Japan so I had a bit of a hectic week!