Scaffolding Women Coaches’ Development: A Program to Build Coaches’ Competence and Confidence

in Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal
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Research continues to demonstrate the underrepresentation of women coaches and that barriers outweigh support. The purpose of this practical article is to describe the process undertaken by a National Governing Body of Sport to deliver a learning and development program to support women hockey coaches in Scotland, the Women in Coaching program. Our aim is to share understanding about this example of good practice to provide insight and direction for change that can enhance the experiences and provisions of coach education and development for women coaches. First, we explain the use of scaffolding as a concept to capture the approach adopted in the program to bring together a range of learning situations (e.g., coach education, workshops, systematic observation of coaching practice, mentoring). We then describe and discuss the evidence gathered to inform program development (i.e., workforce analysis, interviews with coaches). Next the delivery of the program and assessment of its impact are discussed (i.e., pre-post self-perceptions, players’ perceptions, coaching behaviors, reflective survey). Finally we present best practices based on the lessons learned from our involvement with the program over the past six years.

Allen is with the Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport, University of Stirling, Stirling, Scotland, United Kingdom. Reid is with Scottish Hockey, Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom.

Allen (justine.allen@stir.ac.uk) is corresponding author.
Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal
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