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Andrea J. Becker

The primary purpose of this study was to examine basketball players’ experiences of being coached during a turnaround season. Participants included eight collegiate men’s basketball players (ages 18–23) and one staff member representing an NCAA Division I program at a large university in the United States. All participants were involved with the basketball program during back-to-back seasons in which the team experienced a losing record (14–17) followed by a coaching change, and then a winning record (22–8) and conference championship. Semistructured interviews (lasting between 30–90 min) were conducted and transcribed verbatim. Analyses of the transcripts revealed 631 meaning units that were further grouped into lower and higher order themes. This led to the development of five major dimensions which encompassed these basketball players’ experiences of being coached during this extraordinary turnaround season including their (a) Experiences of Coach’s Personality Characteristics; (b) Experiences of Coach’s Philosophy, System, and Style of play; (c) Experiences of His Coaching Style; (d) Experiences of the Practice Environment; and (e) Experiences of How Coach Influenced Us.

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Andrea J. Becker and Craig A. Wrisberg

The purpose of this study was to systematically examine the practice behaviors of Pat Summitt, the winningest collegiate basketball coach in NCAA Division I history. Throughout the 2004–05 season, Summitt’s verbal and nonverbal behaviors were video recorded during six practices. A total of 3,296 behaviors were observed and coded using the Arizona State University Observation Instrument (Lacy & Darst, 1984). Results indicated that 55% (n = 1810) of Summitt’s behaviors were directed toward the team, whereas 45% (n = 1,486) were directed toward individual players. The most frequent behavior was instruction (48%, n = 1,586) followed by praise (14.5%, n = 478) and hustle (10.7%, n = 351). Contrary to predictions, no differences were found in the quantity or quality of the coaching behaviors that Summitt directed toward high and low expectancy players.

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Andrea J. Becker and Gloria B. Solomon

The purpose of this study was to determine the sources of information coaches use to develop expectations for athlete ability. Results revealed that Division I head basketball coaches (n = 70) rely predominately on psychological factors when evaluating athletes (n = 186). There were no significant differences between the sources of information used by successful and less successful coaches. A significant degree of congruence was discovered between coach and athlete perceptions of the evaluation criteria used on successful teams, but not on less successful teams. Athletes’ perceptions of their coach’s evaluation criteria served to predict team success. It was determined that differences in team success are more dependent on the coach’s ability to communicate expectations than the actual criteria used to form expectations.

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Jennifer M. Schumacher, Andrea J. Becker and Lenny D. Wiersma

Phenomenological interview methods were used to examine the experiences of thirteen channel swimmers (nine males and four females) with an average age of 41.08 years (SD = 10.05). All participants successfully completed an official channel crossing of 20 or more miles within the past 2 years. Analyses of the interview transcripts yielded 2,028 meaning units that were grouped into subthemes, themes, and major dimensions (e.g., Patton, 2002). The final thematic structure consisted of three major dimensions that chronicled the swimmers’ experiences including: before my channel swim, during my channel swim, and after my channel swim. This manuscript specifically focuses on the themes from within the dimension of during my channel swim, which includes the swimmers’ environmental, physical, social, and psychological experiences during the swim itself as well as the coping mechanisms that they used to succeed.

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Darolyn J. Walker, Andrea MacIntosh, Anita Kozyrskyj, Allan Becker and Jon McGavock

Background:

The primary aim of this population-based study was to determine if arterial stiffness is associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factor clustering and physical activity in youth 12−14 years old. We hypothesized that arterial stiffness would be positively associated with CVD risk factor clustering and negatively associated with physical activity in a dose-response manner in this cohort of youth.

Methods:

This was a cross sectional study of 485 youth recruited from the 1995 Manitoba birth cohort. The primary outcome, arterial stiffness, was assessed noninvasively using conventional pulse wave analysis and velocity. The primary exposure variables included 1) a measure of cardiometabolic risk, defined as a composite of novel and traditional risk factors for cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes and 2) self-reported physical activity.

Results:

Neither cardiometabolic risk factor clustering, nor physical activity were associated with either measure of arterial stiffness in this cohort of youth 12−14 years. Cardiometabolic risk decreased with increasing levels of vigorous physical activity, (P < .05) and increased with increasing body mass index.

Conclusions:

Cardiometabolic risk factor clustering and physical activity are not associated with arterial stiffness in youth 12−14 years of age. Increased vigorous physical activity is associated with reduced cardiometabolic risk in youth independent of body mass index.