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Chantal N. Vallée and Gordon A. Bloom

Winning a national championship is a rare feat; winning five consecutive championships is extraordinary. One such example has recently occurred with the University of Windsor women’s basketball team which competes in the Canadian interuniversity sports league. The team’s head coach, Chantal Vallée, has a combined regular season and playoff winning percentage greater than 80%, including winning five consecutive Canadian national championships. Even more astounding is that before her appointment the school had only four winning seasons in their 50-year history, and had never hosted a playoff game. The purpose of this paper is to explain the remarkable turnaround of this program. This article will provide both the “what” (Enacting The Vision; Athlete Empowerment; Teaching Life Skills; Lifelong Learning and Personal Reflection) and the “how” (blueprint) of the transformation of the University of Windsor women’s basketball into a perennial national contender.

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Gordon A. Bloom and Michael D. Smith

Cultural spillover theory holds that the more a society tends to legitimate the use of violence to attain ends for which there is widespread social approval, the greater the likelihood of illegitimate violence. This study was a test of cultural spillover theory as it applies to hockey violence. Based on data from a representative sample survey of Toronto hockey players and a comparison group of nonplayers, we tested the proposition that violence in hockey “spills over” into violence in other social settings. The results offer support for a cultural spillover explanation of hockey violence. Older players in highly competitive select-leagues were more likely to approve of violence and to act violently in other social settings than were younger select-league players, house-league players, and nonplayers of all ages.

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Helena Seymour, Greg Reid, and Gordon A. Bloom

Social interaction and development of friendships between children with and without a disability are often proposed as potential outcomes of inclusive education. Physical activity specialists assert that exercise and sport environments may be conducive to social and friendship outcomes. This study investigated friendship in inclusive physical education from the perspective of students with (n = 8) and without (n = 8) physical disabilities. All participants attended a reversely integrated school and were interviewed using a semistructured, open-ended format. An adapted version of Weiss, Smith, and Theeboom’s (1996) interview guide exploring perceptions of peer relationships in the sport domain was used. Four conceptual categories emerged from the analysis: development of friendship, best friend, preferred physical activities and outcomes, and dealing with disability. The results demonstrated the key characteristics of best friends and the influential role they play.

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David A. Urquhart, Gordon A. Bloom, and Todd M. Loughead

The purpose of this study was to explore the development, articulation, and implementation of a coaching vision and how this created and sustained a culture of excellence. Six multiple championship–winning men’s university ice hockey head coaches were interviewed. Their combined experience consisted of 20 national titles and over 4,100 wins at the university level. Data were analyzed using thematic analysis. The results indicated that these coaches established a vision that could be separated into three phases: development, articulation, and implementation. Notably, development included the life experiences, personal characteristics, and habits that assisted the development of the coaches’ vision, including apprenticing as an assistant coach. Articulation and implementation involved clearly communicating their vision to athletes, coaches, and personnel who then enacted the vision. Overall, these findings contribute to a better understanding of how championship-winning coaches organize, teach, and articulate their goals through their coaching vision.

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Matthew A. Grant, Gordon A. Bloom, and Jordan S. Lefebvre

The purpose of this study was to examine mentor and mentee perceptions of the viability of a pilot e-mentoring programme for U.S. lacrosse (USL) coaches. Twelve mentees and 12 mentors were paired into dyads, met at a national coaching convention, and were directed to continue their mentoring relationship for up to 6 months via an online platform. Semistructured postprogramme interviews were conducted with four mentors and six mentees at the conclusion of the mentoring relationships. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed via thematic analysis. Results showed that mentors and mentees experienced many of the benefits, barriers, and advantages found in traditional mentoring and e-mentoring relationships. Of interest were three key findings in which trust and respect was quickly experienced by participants, equity within the relationship created collegiality, and technology barriers limited effective teaching methods. Based on the results, practical implications for e-mentoring programmes are presented.

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Matt D. Hoffmann, Todd M. Loughead, and Gordon A. Bloom

The general objective of the current study was to explore the experiences of elite level athletes who reported being peer mentored by other athletes during their sporting careers. The primary purpose was to identify the mentoring functions provided by athlete mentors, while the secondary purpose was to examine the outcomes related to peer mentored athletes’ (i.e., protégés) mentoring experiences. Individual interviews were conducted with 14 elite peer mentored athletes, and the data were analyzed using a hierarchical content analysis. The results indicated that athlete mentors provided a variety of specific functions that facilitated protégés’ progression through sport and development from a personal standpoint. The findings also showed that protégés benefitted in terms of enhanced performance and confidence, and also demonstrated a willingness to provide mentorship to their peers. In sum, the results of the current study may be used to enhance the effectiveness of peer mentoring relationships between athletes.

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Gordon A. Bloom, Natalie Durand-Bush, and John H. Salmela

Little or no empirical research has examined the pre- and postcompetition routines of coaches. The purpose of this study was to address this oversight by conducting in-depth open-ended interviews with 21 expert coaches from four team sports. The interviews were transcribed verbatim and inductively analyzed following the procedures outlined by Côté and colleagues (1993, 1995). The results indicated that coaches had set routines for themselves and their players before and after a competition. Prior to the competition, coaches prepared and mentally rehearsed their game plan, engaged in physical activity to maintain a positive focus, held a team meeting, and occupied themselves during the warmup. Their words immediately before the game were used to stress key points. After the competition, coaches emphasized the importance of controlling their emotions and adopted different behaviors to appropriately deal with the team’s performance and outcome. A brief meeting was held to recapitulate the essential elements of the game and a detailed analysis was not presented until the next practice or meeting.

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Gordon A. Bloom, Rebecca Crumpton, and Jenise E. Anderson

A systematic observation analysis was performed on Fresno State men’s basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian over the course of an entire season. Based on Tharp and Gallimore’s (1976) work and recent research on expert coaches’ training techniques (Côté et al., 1995; Durand-Bush, 1996), the Revised Coaching Behavior Recording Form was created to observe and record Tarkanian’s teaching behaviors and verbal cues. Results showed that tactical instructions was the most frequently occurring variable, representing 29% of the coded behaviors. This behavior was 13% higher than the second highest variable, hustles (16%). Following these two categories were technical instruction (13.9%), praise\encouragement (13.6%), general instructions (12%), scolds (6%), and six other categories with percentages less than 3%. This means that almost one-third of Coach Tarkanian’s practice behaviors relate to teaching offensive and defensive strategies to his team. This differs from the practice sessions of beginner- and intermediate-level coaches, who often focus on teaching fundamental skills to their athletes. A complete description of all 12 categories are provided along with implications for coaches of all levels.

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Jeffrey G. Caron, Gordon A. Bloom, and Andrew Bennie

There is a need to improve concussion education and prevention efforts for youth athletes and those responsible for their care. The purpose of this study was to understand Canadian high school coaches’ insights and perceptions of concussions. Using a case study design, eight high school coaches were interviewed and the data were analysed using a hierarchical content analysis. Findings indicated that participants primarily acquired information about concussions through their own experiences as athletes and parents, and from reports in the sports media. The coaches’ felt their role with concussions was to teach athletes safety techniques during practices and competitions and to encourage them to accurately report their concussion symptoms. In addition, participants forwarded a number of recommendations to improve the dissemination of information to coaches. Results from this study will add to a limited body of concussion research with youth sport coaches. Participants’ insights provide researchers and clinicians with information about coaches’ perceived role with sport-related concussions.

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Tamara L. Wickwire, Gordon A. Bloom, and Todd M. Loughead

The purpose of this study was to examine elite same-sex dyadic sport teams. Semi-structured individual interviews were conducted with elite beach volleyball athletes. The results of the analysis revealed three higher-order categories: (a) sport environment, which included elements related to participation in beach volleyball such as challenges and comparisons between partnerships and other sports; (b) dyad structure and composition, which included individual and relationship elements that created a sense of balance in the partnership; and (c) dyadic interaction process, which focused on developing communication and cohesion in the partnership and working toward an ideal state where interaction was efficient and effective. The results of the study extend group dynamics literature by studying the dyad as a separate group entity and by revealing information specific to this group of athletes.