TUM – Technical University of Munich Menü

Prof. Dr. Jürgen Beckmann

Academic Career and Research Areas

Professor Beckmann (b. 1955) conducts research into sports psychology, working in particular in the fields of motivation and volition. The aim of his research is to gain a deeper understanding of the processes of motivation and volition and to use these findings in competitive sport and preventive healthcare. One of the focuses of his research is on understanding the neurophysiological processes which underlie motivation and motion control in stress situations. In response to growing awareness about the psychological problems associated with competitive sport over recent years, Professor Beckmann’s Chair has come to place a particular emphasis on clinical sports psychology. This includes the careful and prudent use of nature as a preventive measure (Green Exercise) in a European project network.

Professor Beckmann studied social sciences and specialized in psychology at the Ruhr-Universität Bochum. After completing his studies in 1981, he went on to obtain his doctorate (1984) and postdoctoral teaching qualification (1988) in psychology at the University of Mannheim (Venia Legendi for psychology; also Dr. habil. LMU in 1992). From 1984 onwards he was a project leader at the Max Planck Institute for Psychological Research, Munich. In 1990 he was awarded a Heisenberg Scholarship by the German Research Foundation (DFG) and worked during this time at Florida Atlantic University. After an appointment to the position of Professor of Sports Psychology at the University of Potsdam (1997), he took over the Chair of Sport Psychology at TUM in 2006. Visiting professorships have seen him work at the University of Oslo and the South West Jiaotong University, China. In 2018 Professor Beckmann was made an Honorary Professor of the University of Queensland (School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences).


  • Honorary Professor of the University of Queensland (2018)
  • Research funding with the German Research Foundation (DFG) Heisenberg Programme (1990)
  • Young Scientist Award, German Psychological Society (DGPs) (1984)

Key Publications (all publications)

Beckmann J, Gröpel P, Ehrlenspiel F: "Preventing motor skill failure through hemisphere-specific priming: Cases from choking under pressure". Journal of Experimental Psychology: General. 2013; 142 (3):679-691.


Nixdorf I, Frank R, Hautzinger M, Beckmann J: "Prevalence of Depressive Symptoms and Correlating Variables among German Elite Athletes". Journal of Clinical Sport Psychology. 2013; 7(4):313-326.


Kuhl J, Beckmann J: Volition and personality: Action and state orientation. Seattle, USA: Hogrefe and Huber Publishers, 1994.


Heckhausen H, Beckmann J: "Intentional action and action slips". Psychological Review. 1990; 97(1): 36-48.


Kuhl J, Beckmann J: Action control: From cognition to behaviour. Berlin, New York: Springer Science, 1985.