Collegiate Athletes’ Gendered Perceptions of a Hypothetical Male and Female Coach

in Journal of Coaching Education
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  • 1 Minnesota State University-Mankato

Historically, the world of sport is considered a masculine domain characterized by power, aggression, and physical contact (Hall, 1996). The exclusionary elements of the male culture of sport have created gender inequities in participation (Birrell & Theberge, 1994), and a gendered perception of male and female coaches (Frankl & Babitt, 1998; Weinberg, Reveles, & Jackson, 1984). The purpose of this study was to examine the perceptions of male and female collegiate athletes of a hypothetical male and female coach, and to determine if female coaches are more accepted compared to Weinberg et al.’s study investigating male and female athletes’ perceptions of a hypothetical coach. The Attitudinal Questionnaire (Weinberg, Reveles, & Jackson, 1984) was utilized to determine athletes’ attitudes about a hypothetical coach. A 2 × 2 MANOVA indicated a significant interaction between the gender of a hypothetical head coach and the gender of an athlete, and a significant main effect for gender. Univariate ANOVA results indicate that males and females differed in their attitudes and perceptions of both a hypothetical male and female head coach. The female athletes, compared to male athletes, were more likely to be accepting of coaches regardless of the coaches’ gender. Furthermore, male athletes were less accepting of female coaches. In addition, when comparing the means of the current study to Weinberg et al.’s (1984) study, results indicate that female coaches were not more accepted than in 1984.

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