Social identity in sport: A scoping review of the performance hypothesis

Sarah Stephen, Pete Coffee, Christine M. Habeeb, Robert Morris, David Tod

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


The performance hypothesis of social identity provides a unique understanding into the way in which sport performance may be shaped by way of the norms, values, resources, and goals associated with salient social identities. The purpose of the current review was to (1) investigate and synthesize literature that has examined the social identity performance hypothesis, (2) examine how social identity has been measured within this literature, and (3) detect any gaps in the literature to identify potential future directions of research. Online searches conducted between June 2022 and February 2023 identified 40 records comprising 45 studies to be included in the review. Overall, results from this scoping review provided evidence demonstrating support for the performance hypothesis amongst athletes and it can be concluded that performance can be shaped by norms, values, resources, and goals. Social identity may not only provide the basis for explanation of performance gains in sport, but also provides the next generation of research an exciting foundation that informs how athletes social groups may influence many aspects of both personal and group functioning.
Original languageEnglish
Article number102437
JournalPsychology of Sport and Exercise
Early online date16 Apr 2023
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2023


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