Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo / Portale Web di Ateneo


A.Y. Credits
2023/2024 6
Lecturer Email Office hours for students
Gianfranco Gramaccioni The teacher can be contacted via e-mail to define the time and location of the meeting.

Assigned to the Degree Course

Sport Sciences (LM-68)
Date Time Classroom / Location
Date Time Classroom / Location

Learning Objectives

The course is aimed at promoting basic knowledge of Sport and Exercise Psychology and with in-depth analysis of the Psychological Skill Training, providing students with practical guides deriving from the most recent research, which can be used in an integrated and multidisciplinary perspective.


1. The scientific basis of Sports Psychology

• Defining sport and exercise psychology

• The history of sport psychology

• Specializing in sport psychology

• The role of the sports psychologist

2. Personality and motivation

• Define personality in in the sports environment

• Research on personality and application implications

• Main theories on motivation

• How to develop a realistic and practical vision of motivation

3. Awareness and performance

• Mental preparation strategies: evolution of thinking in sports psychology

• Awareness of the factors that influence sports performance

• How to improve awareness in sport and exercise

• Techniques and exercises for awareness

4. Mental training (Psychological Skill Training)

• The basis of the athlete's mental preparation

• How to create a mental preparation program

• Evaluation of Mental Skills

• The role of the sports science graduate in the Psychological Skill Training

5. Goal Setting

• Definition of Goal setting

• Technical, tactical, physical and psychological goals

• How to plan and evaluate goals

• Personal goals and values

6. Stress, Anxiety and Arousal

• Definition of Stress, Arousal and Anxiety

• Identify the sources of anxiety and stress

• Anxiety assessment tools

• Self-regulation strategies

7. Arousal regulation

• define and frame arousal in the sports setting

• Over-arousal states

• Under-arousal states

• Strategies to achieve an optimal state of arousal

8. Stress and HRV (Heart rate Variability)

• Definition of stress

• Stress, overtraining and burnout

• Definition of HRV (cardiac variability)

• HRV monitoring and regulation

9. Management of emotions

• Definition and synthesis of research on emotions in sports

• Hanin's IZOF model

• The Multi-action-Plan model

• Strategies for emotional self-regulation

10. Imagery and mental training

• Definition and theories on imagery in sport

• Imagery characteristics

• The PETTLEP model

• How to develop an imagery training program

11. Self-talk

• The athlete's self-talk

• Cognitive theories on the athlete's internal dialogue

• Main categories of negative thoughts

• Strategies to improve self-talk

12. Attention and concentration

• Definition of attention and concentration

• Distraction factors

• Nideffer's TAIS model

• Strategies for improving concentration

13. Leadership in sport

• The components of effective leadership

• Leadership Styles

• Develop a team culture

• Training philosophy

14. Communication skills in sports groups

• The basics of communication

• Listening skills and sending messages

• The cohesion of sports groups

• Group dynamics and strategies to facilitate cohesion

15. Youth sports psychology

• Characteristics of youth sport

• Motivation and dropout in youth sport

• The motivational climate

• Implementation of effective programs in youth sports

16. Sport psychology of athletes with disabilities

• Define disability in exercise science

• Benefits and barriers of physical activity for people with disabilities

• School inclusion in Physical Education

• Disability Sport Psychology (the mental training of the paralympic athlete)

17. Clinical sport psychology

• Incidence of mental disorders in sport

• Definition of Clinical Sport Psychology and Sport Psychiatry

• Classification system of mental disorders in sport

• Referral to a specialist sport psychologist or psychiatrist

18. Meditative techniques and hypnosis in sport

• Definition and synthesis of research on meditation and hypnosis in sport

• The practice of Mindfulness in mental sports preparation

• The MAC model (mindfulness, acceptance, commitment)

• Definition of hypnosis and considerations on its usefulness in sport

19. Psychology of exercise and well-being

• Exercise and health

• The scientific reasons behind the practice of the exercise

• Main theories on motivation for physical exercise

• How to improve and maintain motivation to exercise

20. The psychological treatment for the injured athlete

• The stages of the injury

• Relationship between stress and injury

• Psychological reactions to the injury

• Role and methods of psychological support in sport injuries

Learning Achievements (Dublin Descriptors)

Knowledge and understanding

Upon completion of the scheduled cycle of lessons, the student will have to demonstrate that they have learned and understood the topics covered in the indicated program and in particular will have to demonstrate that they know:

1.     the main psychological factors that influence sports performance;

2.     Psychological Skill Training strategies useful for optimizing the performance of athletes and those practicing physical exercise;

3.     knowledge of the main psychological factors that influence the type of experience and the "climate" of training both in sports and physical exercise;

4.     strategies to increase the motivation and well-being of athletes and those practicing physical activity in any age group and in educational, amateur and professional settings;

5.     the basics of communication in sports and the strategies to promote team cohesion and the management of sports groups;

Applying knowledge and understanding:

The student must also demonstrate that they have developed the ability to practically apply the knowledge acquired in a professional context, consistently with their professional role and within the limits of the functions and tasks attributed to it.

Making judgments:

The student must demonstrate that they are able to acquire information or data from studies or research in the field of sports psychology and analyze them critically, distinguishing accredited sources from those that are not scientifically supported or ethically incorrect.

Communication skills:

The student must demonstrate that they are able to communicate the knowledge and strategies learned relating to the psychology of sport and exercise to their interlocutors (colleagues, athletes, specialists) clearly and with mastery and specificity of language.

Ability to learn (learning skills):

The student must demonstrate that he has acquired study skills and methods, supported by an interest in the fundamental themes of sports psychology.

Teaching Material

The teaching material prepared by the lecturer in addition to recommended textbooks (such as for instance slides, lecture notes, exercises, bibliography) and communications from the lecturer specific to the course can be found inside the Moodle platform › blended.uniurb.it

Teaching, Attendance, Course Books and Assessment

Innovative teaching methods

Problem-based learning (exercises in small groups on emerging practical problems related to the topics covered
Learning by doing (simulation of scenarios, exercises on cases in small groups)


Attendance at the lessons is not mandatory but recommended as during the lessons there will be practical experiences on mental training techniques (not essential for evaluation purposes) and interviews with experts, technicians and athletes.

Course books

Gramaccioni, G. (2021). La Preparazione Mentale nello Sport e nella vita. Youcanprint (Purchase is not necessary as the teacher will provide extracts of the text during the lessons on the Blended platform together with other supplementary teaching material).
Mandolesi, L. (2017). Manuale di psicologia generale dello sport. Il Mulino: Bologna.


The evaluation will be carried out through
1) Written test (multiple choice test): 80% correct answers are required to be admitted to the oral test.
2) Oral test: oral interview during which the correctness and coherence of the answers to the questions posed by the teacher, mastery and adequacy of the expository language, ability to critically discuss the topics will be evaluated.

Disability and Specific Learning Disorders (SLD)

Students who have registered their disability certification or SLD certification with the Inclusion and Right to Study Office can request to use conceptual maps (for keywords) during exams.

To this end, it is necessary to send the maps, two weeks before the exam date, to the course instructor, who will verify their compliance with the university guidelines and may request modifications.

Additional Information for Non-Attending Students


Non-attending students are invited to refer to the texts explained in the "attending students" section.

« back Last update: 20/11/2023

Il tuo feedback è importante

Raccontaci la tua esperienza e aiutaci a migliorare questa pagina.

Il tuo 5x1000 per sostenere le attività di ricerca

L'Università di Urbino destina tutte le risorse che deriveranno da questa iniziativa alla ricerca scientifica ed al sostegno di giovani ricercatori.

15 22

Se sei vittima di violenza o stalking chiama il 1522, scarica l'app o chatta su www.1522.eu

Il numero, gratuito è attivo 24 h su 24, accoglie con operatrici specializzate le richieste di aiuto e sostegno delle vittime di violenza e stalking.

Posta elettronica certificata



Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo
Via Aurelio Saffi, 2 – 61029 Urbino PU – IT
Partita IVA 00448830414 – Codice Fiscale 82002850418
2024 © Tutti i diritti sono riservati