Understanding social identity and intrateam moral behavior in competitive youth ice hockey: a narrative perspective

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


  • Mark W. Bruner
  • Christopher Forrest
  • Zach Root
  • Veronica Allen
  • Jean Côte

Colleges, School and Institutes

External organisations

  • Nipissing University
  • Queens Univ


Social identity has been found to play a salient role in regulating teammate behavior among youth participating in a range of sports (Bruner, Boardley, & Côté, 2014). This study aimed to better understand social identity by examining how it may influence intrateam moral behavior specifically in competitive youth ice hockey. Thirty-six male and female competitive youth ice hockey players from nine teams participated in narrative interviews. Using a thematic narrative analysis, three distinct narratives were identified: (1) family-oriented team narrative, (2) performance-oriented team narrative, and (3) dominance-oriented team narrative. Within each of the narratives, a reciprocal relationship between social identity and intrateam moral behavior was reported such that young athletes’ social identities developed through team membership may influence and be influenced by their moral behavior toward teammates. Collectively, the results extend previous research by providing an in-depth qualitative understanding of social identity and intrateam moral behavior in youth sport.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)173-186
JournalThe Sport Psychologist
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2017


  • group dynamics, prosocial behavior, antisocial behavior, team sport