Building upon prior theoretical and empirical work, this study explores the sport participation trajectories of children across different socio-economic status (SES) categories to assess the possibility of changes in the SES-sport participation relationship as children age. Using representative panel data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Children and Youth, a multilevel analysis of 4,858 children aged 6 to 9 suggests that as children age the SES effect on sport participation persists over time. However, the SES effect on sport participation appears to have relatively small predictive import compared to other factors.
Michelle Hayes, Kevin Filo, Caroline Riot and Andrea Geurin
Numerous studies have focused on athletes’ use of social media by examining the content posted on social media sites, revealing an opportunity to gather firsthand experiences from athletes. Using uses-and-gratifications theory as a theoretical framework to inform an open-ended questionnaire, the authors examined athlete attitudes toward their social media use during a major sport event, as well as the gratifications they received and the challenges they experienced from this use. The study assessed a sample of 57 athletes and their social media use across 20 international major sport events. Findings revealed that social media enabled athletes to communicate with family and friends. Having a connection to home through social media can make athletes feel relaxed in a high-pressure environment. The results reveal uses and gratifications not previously found in research on athlete social media, while also underscoring opportunities for sport organizations to enhance social-media-education programs they provide to athletes.
Mark Dottori, Guy Faulkner, Ryan Rhodes, Norm O’Reilly, Leigh Vanderloo and Gashaw Abeza
This study explored the frame-setting and frame-sending process of media who reported on the 2015 ParticipACTION Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth. Through the use of a case-study method employing a sequential explanatory mixed-methods approach (content analysis followed by semistructured interviews), the findings revealed a high level of frame-sending characteristics by the media, and the framing of stories was found to be influencing the message being sent, making it different from the original messaging sent by public relations practitioners charged with dispersing information. Theoretical and practical contributions are discussed along with suggestions for future studies.
Thilo Kunkel, Rui Biscaia, Akiko Arai and Kwame Agyemang
This research explored the role of athlete on- and off-field brand image on consumer commitment toward the athlete and associated team, preference by the athlete’s sponsor, and the mediating effect of consumers’ self-brand connection on these relationships. Data were collected from fans of soccer players through a cross-sectional survey promoted on social media platforms. A partial least squares structural equation model examined the direct effects of both athlete brand dimensions on athlete commitment, team commitment, and athlete sponsor preference, and the indirect effects mediated via self-brand connection. The results indicate that an athlete’s on-field image is significantly related to athlete sponsor preference, while the off-field image influences athlete commitment and team commitment. Self-brand connection is influenced by athlete off-field image and mediates the relationship between off-field image and athlete commitment. This study contributes to a better understanding of how to manage athlete brands and linkages between fans, athletes, and associated entities.
Diane M. Culver, Erin Kraft, Cari Din and Isabelle Cayer
This best practice paper describes a Canadian intervention to address the lack of women in sport coaching and leadership roles. While the number of female athletes has increased over the last decades, the opposite is true of female head coaches, both nationally and internationally. The issues influencing this trend are mostly institutional and societal. There is a lack of support systems in place for females attempting to become involved (recruitment) and maintain their involvement (retention) in coaching. The Alberta Women in Sport Leadership Impact Program (AWiSL) takes a community of practice approach to increase gender equity and leadership diversity in Alberta sport organizations. The AWiSL began in October 2017 and continues until early 2020. There are currently 6 mentors and 12 sport leaders from Alberta sport organizations, who engage in monthly meetings to learn and participate in the co-creation of knowledge to meet the project outcomes, which include the planning and implementation of initiatives for their individual sport organizations, all in the service of supporting gender equity. Descriptions of specific activities thus far are presented as well as information about the how to of conducting such an intervention. Various challenges and lessons are discussed. The description of the AWiSL and ongoing program evaluation aims to support other organizations seeking an example of an initiative to create equitable coaching and leadership opportunities, and to create change.
Matea Wasend and Nicole M. LaVoi
A plethora of research on barriers facing women in the coaching profession exists, but less attention has been devoted to female student-athletes’ transition into coaching. Some research suggests that female athletes who are coached by women are more likely to become coaches. In the present study, existing research is extended by examining the relationship between collegiate female basketball players’ post-playing career behavior and the gender of their collegiate head coach. Two research questions are addressed: (1) Are female collegiate Division-I basketball players who are coached by female head coaches more likely to enter the coaching profession than athletes who are coached by men? And; (2) If female basketball players do enter coaching, are those who were coached by women more likely to persist in coaching? Collegiate head coach gender did not emerge as a significant predictor of athletes’ likelihood to enter coaching, but logistic regression indicated that athletes who did enter coaching were 4.1-times more likely to stay in coaching if they had a female head coach. This study extends the scarce and outdated body of research on the potential salience of same-sex coaching role models for female athletes and provides baseline data on collegiate athletes’ entry rate into coaching, lending support to advocacy aimed at reversing the current stagnation of women in the sport coaching profession.
Leslie K. Larsen and Christopher J. Clayton
In 2017–2018, more than 60% of NCAA Division I women’s basketball (DI WBB) players identified as women of color, while less than 17% of the head coaches of DI WBB teams identified as women of color. Larsen, Fisher, and Moret suggested differences in career pathways between black female head coaches and their white female and white and black male counterparts could be one explanation for the aforementioned discrepancy. However, there is currently limited research on the career pathways of DI WBB head coaches to support Larsen and colleagues’ hypothesis. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to analyze the career pathways of DI WBB head coaches to identify race and gender differences. To accomplish this, a content analysis was conducted on the online biographies of head coaches from all 351 DI WBB programs. Significant differences between groups were found in the number of years coaching in DI women’s basketball prior to receiving a first DI head coaching position; both white women (M = 6.97) and women of color (M = 7.94) had significantly more years in DI WBB coaching than white males (M = 4.95; F(3, 348) = 4.63, p = .003). Further, chi-square tests revealed a significant relationship between the race and gender of a coach and the highest level of playing experience and education. These results indicate that race and gender play a significant role in determining what pathway is required to obtain an DI WBB head coaching position. In addition to these research findings, practical implications are discussed.
Nicole M. LaVoi, Jennifer E. McGarry and Leslee A. Fisher
George B. Cunningham, Na Young Ahn, Arden J. Anderson and Marlene A. Dixon
Women are underrepresented in coaching positions, both at the assistant and head coach levels. The purpose of this study was to examine one reason for this occurrence: gender differences in occupational turnover. The authors provided a review of the literature related to occupational turnover, integrating coaching and organizational psychology literatures. Based on these frameworks, the authors then conducted a meta-analysis of the quantitative research in the area, statistically aggregating results from 10 samples and 2,802 coaches. Results indicated that women intend to leave coaching sooner than do men (d = .38). Drawing from the review, the authors then examined potential reasons for the differences. Contrary to expectations, women were younger (d = −.56) and had shorter occupational tenures (d = −.59) than men, suggesting that other factors, such as their aspirations for advancement or the macro-level barriers they encounter, make coaching an unattractive option. Women had lower aspirations for advancement in the profession (d = −.74) and less positive experiences in coaching (d = −.23), though organizational experiences did not vary by gender. The results collectively suggest that occupational constraints can limit women’s aspirations and intentions to remain in coaching, even beyond what would be expected based on their age and time in the profession.