Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Kinesiology (MKin)


Kinesiology and Physical Education


Faculty of Science

First Advisor

Dr. Mark Eys

Advisor Role



Team sport participation is highly prevalent for Canadian youth (Canadian Heritage, 2010; ParticipACTION, 2018). As such, it is important to understand how youth sport teams develop and function as well as how team membership influences individual sport experiences. Group cohesion (i.e., team unity) is an important aspect of group functioning that has been proposed to be related to an athlete’s perceived commitment to his/her role (i.e., role commitment; Benson et al., 2013). However, the majority of role related research is cross-sectional and conducted with adult samples. Cross-sectional research limits the amount of information researchers can obtain concerning the relationship between variables (Bosselut et al., 2012) and results from adult-based literature are difficult to apply to the youth sport due to the developmental differences between populations (Rubin et al., 2006).

The purpose of this study was to determine whether cohesion can predict the three bases of role commitment (affective, normative, and continuance) in youth interdependent sport. Athletes (N = 187, Mage = 15.5, SD = 1.4) on various sport teams were surveyed at two time points throughout their seasons. Three hierarchical multiple regressions were conducted as the main data analysis. Controlling for Time 1 perceptions of dependent variables, the results revealed that perceptions of cohesion positively predicted both affective (overall model R2adj = .48, F(2,183) = 3.93, p = .021) and normative (overall model R2adj = .38, F(2,183) = 5.91, p = .003) perceptions of role commitment. Specifically, task cohesion at Time 1 was a significant predictor of affective (b = .17; p < .01) and normative (b = .20; p < .01) perceptions of role commitment at Time 2. These findings support previous literature that has purported a relationship between cohesion and role commitment, and discussion is focused on the importance of task cohesion for the development of individual role commitment perceptions.

Convocation Year


Convocation Season


Available for download on Monday, June 27, 2022