An Exploratory Examination of Strategies Used by Elite Coaches to Enhance Self-Efficacy in Athletes

in Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology
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Two studies were conducted to assess strategies elite coaches use to enhance self-efficacy in athletes, in particular the degree to which coaches use 13 strategies to influence self-efficacy and their evaluation of the effectiveness of those strategies. Self-efficacy rating differences between categories of coaches were also examined. Intercollegiate wrestling coaches (iV=101) surveyed in Study 1 indicated they most often used instruction-drilling, modeling confidence oneself, encouraging positive talk, and employing hard physical conditioning drills. Techniques or strategies judged most effective by these coaches included instraction-drilling, modeling confidence oneself, liberal use of reward statements, and positive talk. In Study 2, 124 national team coaches representing 30 Olympic-family sports served as subjects. The strategies they most often used were instruction-drilling, modeling confidence oneself, encouraging positive talk, and emphasizing technique improvements while downplaying outcome. The techniques judged most effective were instruction-drilling, encouraging positive talk, modeling confidence onself, and liberal use of reward statements. Few between-coach differences were found in efficacy use and effectiveness ratings. Findings are discussed in light of Bandura's (1977) theory of self-efficacy.

Daniel Gould is with the Department of Physical Education at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, NC 27412. Ken Hodge is with the Department of Physical Education at the University of Otago, New Zealand. Kirsten Peterson and John Giannini are graduate students in the Department of Educational Psychology and Kinesiology, respectively, at the University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801.

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