Group Dynamics in Handball Teams - the Importance of Intellectual Abilities or How to Become the Informal Leader

Alexandra PREDOIU, Radu PREDOIU, Georgeta MITRACHE, Vasilica GRIGORE, Mihaela PAUNESCU


To be popular in a group or in a sports team can be important, but to be rejected must be avoided. Most functional groups and teams have a leader, which can be designated by the coach (formal leader) or elected by the team members (informal leader). The present research focused on identifying important cognitive abilities of the informal leader in the case of preadolescent handball players grouped, after performing a sociometric assessment in terms of the sport-related competence, in three categories: popular, neglected/ controversial and rejected. Knowing cognitive dimensions specific to athletes who score high for the preferential status index (PSI) after performing a sociometric assessment, we could be able to intervene, facilitating the social integration of the rejected or neglected/ controversial athletes in sports teams. 60 female handball players, from four handball teams from Romania, participated at the study. Each team comprised 15 athletes and represented the reference group, within which status was determined. The cognitive dimensions explored through our study were the verbal and nonverbal intelligence and the topographical memory. In the case of the preadolescent athletes (subsequent to the application of one-way ANOVA) significant differences were found between the results of the investigated groups (popular neglected/ controversial and rejected), for: topographical memory efficiency and verbal and nonverbal skills. The results emphasize important intellectual dimensions of the informal leader that may positively influence a successful social integration of the athletes in the team.

How to cite: Predoiu,  A., Predoiu,  R.,  Mitrache,  G.,  Grigore, V.,  &  Paunescu,  M. (2017).  Group Dynamic  in Handball Teams  -  the  Importance of  Intellectual  Abilities  or  How  to  become  the Informal Leader. Logos Universality Mentality Education Novelty, Section: Social Sciences, VI(2), 32-45.  


Verbal and nonverbal intelligence, topographical memory, sociometry, informal leader, handball.

Full Text:

View PDF


Andrewes, D. (2016). Neuropsychology: From Theory to Practice. New York: Psychology Press.

Asher, S.R., Gottman, J.M. (1981). The development of children's friendships. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Cornell, E.H., Heth, C.D., Alberts, D.M. (1994). Place recognition and way finding by children and adults. Mem Cognit, 22(6), 633-43. Available from: DOI: 10.3758/BF03209249

Cornoldi, C., & Vecchi, T. (2003). Visuo-spatial Working Memory and Individual Differences. New York: Psychology Press.

Daft, R.L., Marcic, D. (2011). Understanding Management. Boston: Cengage Learning.

Dahlkemper, T.R. (2013). Anderson's Nursing Leadership, Management and Professional Practice For the LPN/LVN: In Nursing School and Beyond. Philadelphia: F. A. Davis Company.

Denscombe, M. (2014). The Good Research Guide: For Small-scale Social Research Projects. London: Open University Press.

Eklund, R.C., & Tenenbaum, G. (2014). Encyclopedia of Sport and Exercise Psychology. Thousand Oaks: SAGE Publications.

Epuran, M., Holdevici, I., & Tonita, F. (2001). Psihologia sportului de performana. Teorie si practica. Bucuresti: FEST.

Griffin, R. W. (2007). Student Achievement Series: Principles of Management. Boston: Cengage Learning.

Griffin, R. W., Phillips, J. M., Gully, S. M. (2014). Organizational Behavior: Managing People and Organizations. Boston: Cengage Learning.

Griffith, B.A., & Dunham, E.B. (2015). Working in Teams: Moving From High Potential to High Performance. Thousand Oaks: SAGE Publications.

Grigore, V., Predoiu, A., Predoiu, R., & Mitrache, G. (2017). Study regarding relevant abilities of the informal leader in the case of handball players through computerized assessment. Proceedings of the 13th International Scientific Conference "eLearning and Software for Education", 3, 119-26. Available from: DOI: 10.12753/2066-026X-17-191

Horn, J. L., & Cattel, R. B. (1966). Refinement and test of the theory of the fluid and crystallized general intelligences. J Educ Psychol., 57(5), 253-70. Available from:

Jiang, X. L., & Cillessen, A. H. (2011). Stability of continuous measures of sociometric status: A meta-analysis. Dev Rew, 25(1), 1-25. Available from:

Kaufman, S.B. (2013). Ungifted: Inteligence Redefined. New York: Basic Books.

Mendoza, J., & Foundas, A. (2008). Clinical Neuroanatomy: A Neurobehavioral Approach. New York: Springer Science & Business Media, 685 p.

Mihu, A. (1967). Sociometria. Bucuresti: Politica

Moreno, J.L. (1934). Who Shall Survive? A New Approach to the Problem of Human Interrelations. Washington: Nervous and Mental Disease Publishing.

Moreno, J.L. (1960). The Sociometry Reader. Glencoe: The Free Press.

Peterson, C. (2014). Looking Forward Through the Lifespan: Developmental Psychology. Melbourne: Pearson Education Australia.

Poulin, F., Dishion, T.J. (2008). Methodological Issues in the Use of Peer Sociometric Nominations with Middle School Youth. Soc Dev, 17(4), 908.-21. Available from:, DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9507.2008.00473.x

Predoiu, R. (2016). Psihologia sportului. Maximizarea performantei sportive. Iasi: Polirom.

Pride, W., Hughes, R., Kapoor, J. (2014). Business. Mason: Cengage Learning.

Serban, M. (1987). Aprecierea calitatilor in sport. Bucuresti: Sport-Turism.

Smart, M. (2010). Informal Leadership. Mailtland: Xulon Press.

Smith, P.K., Hart, C.H. (2010). The Wiley-Blackwell Handbook of Childhood Social Development. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing.

Spodek, B., & Saracho, O.N. (1994). Dealing with individual differences in the early childhood classroom. New York: Longman.

Tudos, S., Predoiu, A., & Predoiu, R. (2015). Topographical memory and the concentration of attention in top female tennis players. Procedia Soc Behav Sci, 190, 293-8. Available from:

Turcu, A. (1975). Directii principale in abordarea reprezentarilor topografice. Revista de Psihologie, 21(4), 435-46.

Weinberg, R., & Gould, D. (2015). Foundations of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 6th ed. Champaign: Human Kinetics.

Whitcomb, S., & Merrell, K. (2013). Behavioral, Social and Emotional Assessment of Children and Adolescents. 4th ed. New York: Routledge.

Zlate, M. (2004). Tratat de psihologie organizational-manageriala, volumul I. Iasi: Polirom.


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright © LUMEN SS | A LUMEN Peer Reviewed Open Access Journal