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Influence des stéréotypes sexués et des stéréotypes liés à l’âge sur la performance d’endurance non-technique : un effet positif de l’induction d’un stéréotype négatif ?

Abstract : The stereotype threat theory (Steele, 1997) suggests that when a negative stereotype toward one group is induced, in a context where this stereotype is susceptible to be applied, a decrease in performance would be observed. After being replicated in various domains, this negative effect on performance was generalized to the physical domain. Most studies investigated this effect during technical tasks such as soccer-dribbling tasks (for a meta-analysis, see Gentile, Boca, & Giammusso, 2018). Although technical abilities are major factors in physical performance, other factors also regulate physical performance such as physical abilities with, for example, endurance (Weineck, 1983). The objective of this thesis was to examine the influence of inducing sex stereotypes and aging stereotypes on women’s and older adults’ non-technical endurance performance. The integrated process model (Schmader, Johns, & Forbes, 2008), widely used in the literature, explains performance modifications after a negative stereotype was induced during technical tasks. However, this model makes no assumptions about its effect during non-technical tasks. The mere effort account (Jamieson & Harkins, 2007), recently validated in the physical domain, could be applied during this type of task. This account suggests that inducing a negative stereotype could lead to an increase in threatened participants’ performance during non-technical endurance tasks. In line with these predictions, studies 1, 2, 3 and 4 showed an increase in women’s endurance performance after inducing a negative stereotype toward them during tasks at submaximal and maximal intensities, and on different muscle groups. These studies especially observed that threatened women were more motivated to outperform men (study 4) and they put more effort into the tasks. This performance increase could also be due to a lower central fatigue (study 3) and a greater planning of the central motor command over the prefrontal cortex (study 4). These four studies strengthen the hypothesis that the effects of sex stereotypes would be task-dependent and that the mere effort account appears to be relatively robust to explain the effects of sex stereotypes during non-technical endurance tasks. Interestingly, these positive results were not fully replicated in older adults. Inducing a negative aging stereotype did not influence participants’ maximal performance (studies 5 and 6). An increase in performance was nonetheless observed when the intensity of the task was reduced (study 6). When investigating aging stereotypes, the mere effort account seems to be imperfect and needs to be completed to explain their effects in the physical domain. The results of this thesis enrich the stereotype threat literature by showing that inducing a negative stereotype can, contrary to the predictions of the initial stereotype threat theory (Steele, 1997), lead to an improvement of women’s performances and under certain conditions for older adults.
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Maxime Deshayes. Influence des stéréotypes sexués et des stéréotypes liés à l’âge sur la performance d’endurance non-technique : un effet positif de l’induction d’un stéréotype négatif ?. Education. COMUE Université Côte d'Azur (2015 - 2019), 2019. Français. ⟨NNT : 2019AZUR4108⟩. ⟨tel-02885253⟩

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