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Majid AL-Busafi

The purpose of this critical review is to propose a coach education system for Oman. The lack of any coach education system is one of the major obstacles confronting sport in Oman, which is an emerging “sport-interested” country (Zayed, 2004). The current review is based on two sources. First, an empirical investigation across Oman was conducted. Second, in order to learn from other notable coach-education systems, national and international coach-education systems were analyzed. Four data-gathering instruments were selected: questionnaire, interview, document analysis, and a research journal. Knowledge and understanding gained in these exercises were used to underpin a proposal for a coach education system for Oman that includes an accreditation structure, a curriculum outline, and a management system.

Open access

Sunnhild Bertz and Laura Purdy

The high-performance sports system is a rapidly evolving and increasingly important element of the Irish sporting landscape reflected in public policy, the direction and level of spending, and organisational/institutional evolution – all signalling a formal recognition of the high-performance sector as central to sport in Ireland. While certain aspects of high-performance sport in Ireland are beginning to be reflected in research (e.g., Guerin et al. 2008), this is yet to be extended to high performance coaching. The education, development, and support of coaches are key areas of the Coaching Strategy for Ireland (2008-2012). An understanding of high-performance coach activities and needs will become increasingly vital in underpinning the effectiveness of resources directed at high-performance coaching as Ireland seeks to reposition itself within the world’s elite in sport. The purpose of this article is to better understand the development of high-performance coaches in Ireland and the key influences on this (e.g., exposure to different coaching environments, sources of knowledge, and preferred ways of learning). It aims to explore what high-performance coaches believe has been most important in developing and fostering their coaching ‘know-how,’1 and what this may imply for future educational interventions for high-performance coaches. This article brings to light insights generated through semi-structured interviews with 10 high-performance coaches currently and/or recently working in Irish sport.

Open access

Kristen D. Dieffenbach and Valerie Wayda

Among the physical activity, exercise and health related academic disciplines, coaching education remains an under-developed field. Once closely aligned with physical education, coaching education has remained practically immobile despite the activity and growth in the related functional fitness and sport performance fields of exercise and sport sciences such as sport pedagogy, exercise physiology, and sport and exercise psychology. This article provides a historical context for the evolution of the academic discipline of coaching education within the broader field of physical education and a brief overview of coaching education as it exists within academia today. Recommendations and suggestions are made for the future growth and development of the coaching education discipline.

Open access

Ashley E. Stirling

Coach education is the key to improved coaching. In order for coach education initiatives to be effective though, the conceptualization of those initiatives must be developed based on empirical learning theory. It is suggested that Kolb’s theory of experiential learning may be an appropriate learning theory to apply to coach education. This paper outlines how Kolb’s theory of experiential learning was used in the development of Canada’s National Coaching Certification Program coach education module entitled “Empower +: Creating Positive and Healthy Sport Experiences.” The module is summarized briefly, and Kolb’s six key tenets of experiential learning are reviewed. Applications of each tenet within the coach education module are highlighted, and recommendations are made for future evaluation and research.

Open access

Melissa Murray

Online learning has grown at a rapid pace in the last decade (Allen & Seaman, 2005). The purpose of this paper is to present some of the most recent technologies associated with online coaching education in academic settings. The effectiveness of the online learning environment is controversial (USDOE, 2009; Jaggars & Bailey, 2010). Therefore, it is critical to examine strategies that can be used to ensure learning outcomes. A series of tips for online educators are offered. Multiple tools for educators, including blogs, wikis, Google Cloud, instant messaging and YouTube are discussed in relation to possible course assignments within a coaching education curriculum. The paper concludes with a few suggestions for educating large groups.

Open access

Melissa Murray, Kristen Dieffenbach and Rebecca Zakraj sek

According to the National Coaching Report (NASPE, 2008), over 57 million youth participated in organized sport in 2006, with around eight million of those participating in interscholastic sport. While the NFHS has been a major advocate for coaching education in the interscholastic setting, the other 87% of the youth sport participants are likely being serviced by ill-prepared coaches. In response to the 1970s call for more prepared coaches (NASPE, 2008), collegiate institutions have created academic programs in coaching education. These academic programs seek to prepare qualified coaches at all levels of competition (e.g., youth, interscholastic, intercollegiate, professional, elite). In an effort to provide students with hands on, applied experiences, academic programs generally require some sort of internship. In a recent study, coaching education students reported having numerous opportunities to motivate, encourage, and build confidence in athletes during their internships (Dieffenbach, Murray, & Zakrajsek, 2010), all of which are interpersonal interactions. Given that interpersonal interactions are one of the most significant factors impacting athlete development and the athlete – coach relationship (Jowett, 2003; Jowett & Cockerill, 2003), student coaches are in a critical position. Therefore, these findings beg for a system of checks to be in place within the internship process, namely background checks, required health insurance, and university waivers. The purpose of this presentation is to discuss the regulations and policies in place to protect the student-athletes, student coaches, and university programs during internships in coaching education. Issues like legal responsibilities of the universities, background check policies and procedures, school district-specific requirements, and other policies in place will be discussed in an interactive session. The discussion will also highlight what other organizations (NGBs, NFHS) are doing or could be doing to aid in the protection of their athletes and coaches.

Open access

Karen Collins and Russell Medbery

The coach-athlete relationship is an important determinant in creating a healthy sport environment. Educating coaches is a critical component of cultivating a positive coach-athlete relationship. It is through systematic coaching education programs that positive coaching skills are learned (Smith & Smoll, 1997). It is equally important to accurately assess current needs and demands of state high school coaching education programs. Therefore, the purpose of this research was to systematically assess the current state of coaching education. This needs assessment included descriptions of athletic departments, funding, quality, type, and content of coaching education programs, as well as the level of satisfaction with the current coaching education delivery system. The needs assessment was conducted via a survey that was mailed to every athletic director in the state of New Hampshire. There was a 49% (n = 46) return rate after two follow-up reminders. Results were organized in four categories: financial overview, sport organizational structure, coaching education requirements, and coaching education curriculum content. Overall, results indicated: a clear need to re-evaluate the New Hampshire state requirements for coaching education; how the requirements are met; the content of state coaching education,; and how coaching education is supported financially.

Open access

Judith L. Smith and Dina M. Hayduk

This paper follows a coaching education program at a four-year institution from its inception to NCACE accreditation in 2005 and looks forward to reaccreditation and examines how the program changed to meet the National Standards of Sport Coaches. Along with curriculum changes, the major of the students selecting the coaching program has also changed. Lastly, the attainment of this national accreditation certification has influenced this coaching education program in terms of benefits, challenges, accountability and marketability.

Open access

Lawrence W. Judge, Kimberly J. Bodey, David Bellar, Christine Brooks and Terry Crawford

In recent years, large scale sport organizations and national governing bodies have produced coaching education programs to prepare coaches to teach and mentor athletes. The purpose of this study was to examine: a) track & field coaches’ familiarity with the National Standards for Sport Coaches, b) the alignment of United States Track & Field (USATF) Developmental, Level I, and Level II coaching education programs with the National Standards for Sport Coaches, and c) the alignment of USATF Developmental, Level I, and Level II coaching education programs with coaches’ perceived needs for subject matter training. A 39-item survey was administered during a USATF certification course to measure coaches’ familiarity and perceptions. The results showed the vast majority of coaches (75.2%) were not familiar with the National Standards. At the time of assessment, the Developmental, Level I, and Level II courses were partially aligned with 25 of 40 standards at the Level 1, Level 3, or Level 5 accreditation levels. The courses were not aligned with 15 of 40 standards at any accreditation level. The majority of deficiencies existed in Domain 2: Safety and Injury Prevention, Domain 7: Organization and Administration, and Domain 8: Evaluation. While the USATF coaching education curriculum is partially aligned with many, but not all, of the national standards, the curriculum appears to contain subject matter training that coaches perceived as needed. Curricular revisions, including future directions of the USATF coaching education program, such as new courses and innovative use of technology, are presented.

Open access

Tiffanye M. Vargas, Margaret M. Flores and Robbi Beyer

Athletes with high incidence disabilities (specific learning disabilities, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, emotional behavioral disorders, mild intellectual disabilities and speech/language disabilities) make up 10% of the population of children in kindergarten through twelfth grade. Since these disabilities are not physically apparent, there difficulties may be overlooked or athletes may be mistakenly labeled as unmotivated, lazy, oppositional or defiant. These deficits can be remediated and compensated through the use of research-validated strategies and instructional methods. However, while these methods and strategies are often included in teacher preparation, they rarely, if ever, are included in coaching-preparation. Therefore, the purpose of this hour long interactive lecture is twofold and 1) seeks to review the coaching education research on hidden disabilities, including coaches’ attitudes and efficacy towards working with athletes with hidden disabilities, coaching educators attitudes towards the inclusion of such content within coaching education, and coaches’ preferences for how to receive this information, and 2) to illustrate teaching strategies and techniques that can successfully be incorporated into coaching education. Presenters will use discussion, activities, and research to introduce this new area to coaching education to coach educators and sport scientists/high performance directors.