Call for Papers | Psychology and Sociocultural Aspects of Strength & Conditioning | Special Topic Half Issues of Strength and Conditioning Journal | Ends 2017-07-15

Guest Editors for Psychology Issue:

Guest Editor for Sociology Issue:

Call for Papers

On behalf of Strength and Conditioning Journal (SCJ), we’re pleased to announce a call for papers for two special topics half issues. The topics of these two half special issues are “psychological aspects of S&C” and “sociological aspects of S&C.” Rather than an entire special issue devoted to either of these areas, SCJ will publish two half issues on psychology and sociology. The other half of material in each issue will be the more traditional SCJ content. We decided on this format to extend the practice of social-psychological aspects of S&C, while balancing the content and layout of each issue.

Background and Context

The dominance and value of physiological and biomechanical ways of understanding the athletic body is readily evident in the field of S&C. However, psychological and sociocultural understandings of athletes, the athletic body, and coaches are less prominent. For example, the 4th edition of the eminent Essentials of Strength and Conditioning text has only one chapter on the psychology of athletic performance, and no chapters on socio-cultural issues. Ethical and related social issues can be gleaned from the modest content in chapters on performance-enhancing substances and facilities, procedures, and legal issues.

While SCJ publishes articles on psychological issues and mental skills training, the breadth of topics and theories has been narrow. Only recently in published articles in SCJ have authors called for a more thorough and diverse use of philosophical and sociological approaches to S&C. Despite the ubiquitous social context in which S&C coaching takes place, which influences unique people, values, the mind, human interaction, and the social construction of knowledge on S&C practice, our collective discourse in these areas is negligible.

The two special half issues seek to address these limitations by showing the value and insight offered through social and behavioral ways of understanding athletes, coaches, and their interactions. We are particularly interested in bold submissions that will meaningfully contribute to the S&C field in the short- and long-term. For example, through well-argued implications for NSCA education (e.g., Education Recognition Program, practitioner preparation), events (e.g., clinic and conference topics and presenters), and scholarship (e.g., research, grant funding, awards). Authors are encouraged to provide the curious, but novice reader to social and behavioral sciences with additional vital resources (in-text or as a Table) for follow-up action.

Suggested Psychological and Sociocultural Submissions

We encourage submissions of interest to both authors and SCJ readers such as, but not limited to:

  • Sociological analyses of gender, class, abilism, race, sexuality, etc. and their implications for S&C practice,
  • The social construction of knowledge and evidence-based practice,
  • Stress and coping,
  • Athlete and coach motivation and transitions into and out of sport and S&C,
  • Imagery, self-confidence, goal-setting, concentration, mindfulness, team cohesion,
  • Understanding what sport psychologists/sociologists do and how collaborations could benefit S&C coaches,
  • S&C coach development and learning to be a S&C coach,
  • S&C coach-athlete relationships,
  • S&C coach or athlete leadership or character development,
  • S&C coach’s role in social-psychological aspects of athletic injury, addictive and unhealthy behaviors, burnout and overtraining, violence and aggression,
  • Ethical practices (e.g., fairness, respect, care, use of power),
  • S&C coach’s role in issues of social justice, diversity, and inclusivity,
  • Submissions integrating psychology and sociology to inform S&C practice.

Writing and Publishing Guidelines for Strength and Conditioning Journal

General Instructions

The mission of SCJ is to, “…publish articles that combine the practical applications of previously published peer-reviewed research findings and the knowledge of experienced professionals. This mission includes integrating these two sources of knowledge, providing practitioners with the most accurate information available, and providing a forum for the exchange of information between the many disciplines involved in strength and conditioning.” SCJ publishes evidence-based manuscripts, review papers, best practice papers, but does not publish empirical studies (i.e., no new data, no methods or findings sections).

All submissions must be relevant for S&C practitioners. Authors are encouraged to draw upon theory and evidence in their respective field, however, it is the author’s responsibility to transfer this content to the context of S&C. Here are a few tips on how to achieve this goal:

  • Review and incorporate some of the related social and behavioral science literature in the field of S&C,
  • Consult with the guest editor(s) or an experienced S&C coach to help provide practical knowledge, examples, or context. Consider adding a S&C coach to the authorship team,
  • Use examples throughout the manuscript rich in context to S&C and clearly state the implications to S&C practice and the NSCA.

Strength and Conditioning Journal adheres to the American Medical Association’s Manual of Style, which is markedly different than the American Psychological Association. It is the responsibility of the author, and it will expedite the review process, to ensure AMA style is used.

More information can be found at the SCJ homepage.

Audience and Tone

The audience for SCJ is primarily practitioners. Submissions should be written without excessive technical or theoretical language, while avoiding concerns to “dumb-down” practitioner education. The author’s ability to balance these requirements is essential. Importantly, because it is commonplace for social and behavioral publications to contain only written words, we strongly encourage submissions that break up the text through the appropriate use of tables, figures, photos, and supplementary digital content. Here are a few tips on how to break up text:

  • Take staged photos showing psychological and sociocultural concepts in action
  • Use tables to synthesize large bodies of information,
  • Create a flow chart or logic model to show the relationship amongst concepts.

Submission Instructions

To properly route manuscripts for these special issues, authors should use a customized link sent to them by SCJ Managing Editor Britt Chandler. Please contact the corresponding guest editor or Britt (<> to receive the customized manuscript submission link. Authors should immediately notify the corresponding guest editor or Britt if they fail to use the customized invitation. Submission to these special issues does not guarantee publication. All submissions must meet SCJ standards. The final disposition of all manuscripts is decided by the Editor in Chief.

Tentative Submission and Publication Deadlines

We intended to publish both half special issues in 2018.

  • July 15, 2017. Targeted submission deadline for all manuscripts for both special issues.
  • Aug., 2017. Manuscripts sent out for peer review, returned to editorial team, request to revise and resubmit sent back to authors.
  • Sept.-Nov., 2017. Authors revise and resubmit.
  • Nov.-Dec., 2017. Manuscripts sent out for 2nd peer review, returned to editorial team, request to revise and resubmit send back to authors.
  • Jan.-Feb., 2018. Final corrections made to manuscripts and the editorial team makes decision on manuscripts to be published in which issue in 2018. All accepted manuscripts will be published in SCJ, although not necessarily in the special issue (quantity of accepted manuscripts and layout concerns such as total page count influence publishing decisions).
  • Feb.-March, 2018. Address lingering issues related to the revision process and final stylistic review by the layout editor.

Authors are encouraged to notify the Guest Editors regarding their availability to review manuscripts submitted to SCJ, which will help expedite these special issues.

About Strength & Conditioning Journal

SCJ is a peer-reviewed journal with an impact factor of 0.438, ranked 73/82 in Sport Sciences, published six times per year, and has an online ISSN of 1522-4295. The Editor in Chief of SCJ is Dr. T. Jeff Chandler, CSCS*D, FNSCA.

SCJ is generally considered the most reputable and widely read peer-reviewed practitioner journal in the field of S&C. Instructions for authors is accessible at:

Questions about these special half issues should be directed to the corresponding guest editors.

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