The purpose of this study was to examine the process of change at the level of youth sport by identifying the impetus for change, responses to change by stakeholders, and factors that constrained or aided the change process. Theoretically, this study builds upon an existing integrative change model. The context of this research is two youth soccer associations in Ontario, Canada, undergoing a long-term structural redesign mandated by the provincial soccer association. Stakeholders from local soccer clubs, as well as the Ontario Soccer Association (N = 20), identified key factors influencing the implementation and success of change. Pressures to change and individual efforts made by board members, coaches, and parents were noted as aiding the change process. Limited collaboration with stakeholders, poor communication, misunderstandings of the change, and constrained organizational capacity negatively affected the change process.
The authors are with Department of Kinesiology, University of Windsor, Windsor, ON, Canada.