Assessing reasons for sports career termination: Development of the Athletes' Retirement Decision Inventory (ARDI)


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Abstract

Objective:To develop an original self-report questionnaire to assess the retirement decision process among competitive athletes using the push pull anti-push anti-pull view.Method:A two-step procedure was used to develop the scale. The first step involved creating a list of items leading to a preliminary version of the Athletes' Retirement Decision Inventory (ARDI), which assessed perceptions of the reasons for career termination. In the second study, 236 French competitive athletes (73.7% male; mean age =24.93 years) completed the ARDI. This second step aimed to test the factor structure of the ARDI, and to select the final items.Results:The final 39-item version of the ARDI has a good psychometric basis. It comprises four factors: (a) anti-pull, (b) pull, (c) anti-push and (d) push, with adequate internal consistency and which explain a sufficient part of the total variance.Conclusion:Firstly, this study confirms that the retirement decision process is complex and multifaceted, and secondly, it provides a new instrument to assess the process, although further research is needed to validate this tool. Finally, it suggests some avenues for refining career termination counseling.

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