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Twitter: @SportPsychPat

Thesis title

An Integrated Model of Flow and Clutch Optimal Psychological States in Adventure Recreation

Doctoral research abstract

Patrick Boudreau image 2020

In the most extreme variants of adventure recreation (e.g., wingsuit BASE-jumping at 200km/h in close proximity to mountain sides), where optimal performance might be a matter of life and death, optimal mental states are paramount. Optimal states of mind are an integral part of sport and exercise psychologists' understanding of performance, psychological well-being, and motivation. An underlying assumption of earlier research is that only one mental state, flow, is responsible for peak performance and psychological well-being. Flow and another state, clutch, have been reported as having shared characteristics such as perceived control, enjoyment, and enhanced motivation. However, clutch has been described as having characteristics that are incompatible with flow, such as intense concentration and a deliberate focus on the activity at hand that requires intense effort. In comparison, flow has been characterised as a uniquely effortless and enjoyable state of mind. Recently, the concept of flow as the only optimal state of mind has come into question. My Ph.D. research will be the first investigation of the flow and clutch integrated model conducted in the context of adventure recreation.


Master of Arts, Physical Education. University of Victoria, Canada (2017)
Bachelor of Education, Physical and Health Education. McGill University, Canada (2015)
Diploma of Collegial Studies, Major in Psychology, Vanier College. Canada (2009)

Scholarships & Awards

University of Otago Doctoral Scholarship, University of Otago, New Zealand (2018-2021)
Canadian Graduate Scholarship, SSHRC (2016-2017)
Department Conference Award, University of Victoria, Canada (2017)
Conference Award, CUPE, University of Victoria, Canada (2017)
Faculty of Education Conference Award, University of Victoria, Canada (2017)
The School of Physical Education Scholarship, University of Victoria, Canada (2017)
Caisse Desjardins de L'Envolée Bursary, Quebec, Canada (2012)
Faculty of Education Award, McGill University, Canada (2011)
Mobility Award, McGill University, Canada (2011)
Rae & Jack Levy Memorial Bursary, McGill University, Canada (2011)
Felix Leopold Bursary, McGill University, Canada (2011)
Emery & Erwin Klineman Bursary, McGill University, Canada (2011)

Primary Research Interests

Adventure sports

Including: The motivation for participation in adventure sports and the benefits/risk of participation

Physical activity pedagogy

Including: Investigating the mediators of participation in regular physical activity, improving the self-confidence (viz., climbing self-efficacy) of participants

Neuroscience of physical activity

Including: Using portable electroencephalography to monitor brain activity in rock-climbers and other participants of adventure sports

Teaching Experience

Teaching Assistant (lecturing/tutoring/grading)

Sport Psychology (SPEX 204 and SPEX 304; 2019-2020), University of Otago, New Zealand
Health, Wellness, and Human Potential (2015-2016-2017), University of Victoria, Canada
Foundations of Outdoor Recreation (2016), University of Victoria, Canada
Inclusion of Students within Physical Education (2016), University of Victoria, Canada


Rock-climbing (2017), Stelly's High School, Canada
Healthy Living and Leadership (2015), Chisasibi High School, Canada

Guest lecturer

Research Methods for Graduate Students (2018), University of Victoria, Canada
Inclusion of Students within Physical Education (2016), University of Victoria, Canada

Research experience

Editor for Dr. Julia Albrecht, University of Otago, Department of Tourism (2018)


Houge Mackenzie, S., Boudreau, P., & Raymond, E. Well-being of women adventure guides. Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management.

Boudreau, P., Houge Mackenzie, S., & Hodge, K. (2020). Flow states in adventure recreation: A systematic review and thematic synthesis. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 46. (Responsible for: design, search, data retrieval, analysis, and writing)

Rhodes, R.E., Boudreau, P., Josefsson, K. W., & Ivarsson, A. (2019). Mediators of physical activity behaviour change interventions among adults: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Health Psychology Review. (Responsible for: search, data retrieval, and editing)

Boudreau, P. & Gibbons, S. (2019). A case study of the rock climbing self-efficacy of high school students. The Physical Educator, 76(4). (Responsible for: design, data collection, analysis, and writing)

McEwan, D., Boudreau, P., Curran, T., & Rhodes, R.E. (2019). Personality traits of high-risk sport participants: A meta-analysis. Journal of Research in Personality. 10.1016/j.jrp.2019.02.006 (Responsible for: design, search, data retrieval, initial analysis and writing)

Albrecht, J. N., Danielmeier, T., & Boudreau, P. (2019). The relationship between spatial settings and culinary experiences in tourism and hospitality. Journal of Gastronomy and Tourism.4(1), 41-50. (Responsible for literature review and editing)

Rhodes, R.E. & Boudreau, P. (2019). Personality and physical activity. In D. Hackfort, R.J. Schinke, & B. Strauss (Eds.), Dictionary of Sport Psychology. Chennai, India: Elsevier Publishers. (Writing)

Boudreau, P. (2017). The impact of a rock-climbing program: a mixed methods case study of high school students' climbing self-efficacy [Thesis]. DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.11806.13123

Appearances in News and Media Outlets

the Newsroom
Australasian Leisure Management
Health Central
New Zealand Doctor
Otago Daily Times
University of Victoria News


Contributions were provided on the following articles:

Mackenzie, S. H., & Raymond, E. (2020). A conceptual model of adventure tour guide well-being. Annals of Tourism Research, 84, 102977.

Houge Mackenzie, S., & Hodge, K. (2019). Leisure Studies Adventure recreation and subjective well-being: a conceptual framework. Leisure Studies. doi:10.1080/02614367.2019.1577478


Boudreau, P. (Accepted but cancelled due to COVID-19). Optimal States as a motivation for participating in rock-climbing: A mixed-method crossover design. SELF International Conference, Quebec, Canada.
Boudreau, P. (2020). Adventure sports are good for your health. Queenstown Adventure Capital of the World Festival, Queenstown, New Zealand (Invited speaker)
Boudreau, P. (2020). Optimal states in adventure. Lincoln University Sport Psychology Seminar, UK.
Boudreau, P. (2017). The personality traits of adventure physical activity participants. Society of Behavioral Medicine, San Diego, California, USA.
Boudreau, P. (2017). A case study of rock-climbing self-efficacy. Association of Graduate Education Student Conference, University of Victoria, Canada.
Boudreau, P. (2017). A case study of rock-climbing self-efficacy. Social Dimensions of Health, University of Victoria, Canada.
Boudreau, P. (2016). The sources of rock-climbing self-efficacy. Association of Graduate Education Students Conference, University of Victoria, Canada.

Professional Memberships:

Collaborative On-Demand Learning (2019-2020), Board member
Collaborative On-Demand Learning (2018), Director
Sport and Exercise Science New Zealand (2018), Member
Association of Canadian Mountain Guides (2017-2018), Instructor
International Rock Climbing Researchers Association (2017-2020), Member
International Society of Behavioral Medicine (2017-2018), Member
Quebec Professional Association of Teaching (2015-2016), Teacher


Firefighter, Fire and Emergency New Zealand (2020)
Medical Co-Responder, Saint John's Ambulance (2020)
Climbing Gym Instructor, Association of Canadian Mountain Guides. (2017)
Wilderness First Responder, Wilderness Medical Associates. (2017)
Marine Basic First Aid, Red Cross. (2017)
Restricted Operator Course – Maritime, Canadian Power and Sail Squadron (2016)
Avalanche Safety Training, Island Alpine Guides. (2016)
Advance Open Water Diver, PADI. (2016)
Skydiving A and B license, United States Parachuting Association. (2016)
National Lifeguard, Lifesaving Society, Canada. (2015)
Pleasure Craft Operating Card, Transport Canada. (2015)
Wilderness Advanced First Aid, Wilderness Medical Associates. (2014)
Spinning Instructor, Formation des Instructeurs en Danse Aérobique. (2010)
Black Belt, Karate Kenpo Sport Action, Canada. (2010)

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