This study focused on teacher behaviors in tennis classes to determine which ones seemed most effective. The study was conducted during a sports camp at the university level. Subjects were 8 tennis instructors who each taught 5 tennis lessons of 3 hours to a class of 6 university students with no experience in any kind of tennis as defined for our purpose. The students were pretested on the defined tasks before the instruction and posttested during the last tennis lesson. Pretest and posttest performances and instructional sessions were videotaped. The behavioral data were collected by coding the videotape recordings. Classes were then grouped in three more effective and three less effective ones, based first on students’ measures of technique learning and second on their evaluation of the teacher. Using the Mann-Whitney U test, it became apparent that the two groups differed significantly on useful time, receiving information, and the time devoted to specific feedback. Thus, it might be concluded that teacher effectiveness in producing learning gains depends upon ability to transform class time into useful time and information time. According to the students, the amount of specific feedback is the most important characteristic of good teaching.
Agnes Elling, Paul De Knop and Annelies Knoppers
The diversity of sport participants in the Netherlands is beginning to reflect the diversity within the general population. Sport as a whole is becoming more accessible, and participation in sport of different social groups takes place within both mainstream and “separate” sports clubs and in differently organized sports groups. In our paper we critically analyze the broader social integrative functions ascribed to sport by policy makers. We attempt to show that the ongoing democratization of sport participation is not always positively correlated, let alone causally related, to a broader social integrated society. We argue that social integration in itself is a multidimensional process and distinguish three dimensions of integration (structural, social-cultural, and social-affective), which can all occur in and through the practice of sport. Furthermore we argue that the integrative meanings of sport depend on which social groups and which of the dimensions of integration are examined. The complementary and contradictory aspects of the dimensions of social integration with regard to four different social minority groups (ethnic minorities, the elderly, the physically challenged, gays and lesbians) are examined.
Paul Wylleman, Paul De Knop, Joke Delhoux and Yves Vanden Auweele
Academic background, consultation processes, and training and support were assessed with semistructured interviews among 18 sport psychology consultants (60% of total membership) of the Flemish Society of Sport Psychology. A total of 61% of consultants were trained as clinical psychologists, most with limited sport psychology background. Assessments revealed that interpersonal relationships skills and communication (63%) and fear of failure (55%) were the most common concerns, whereas stress management (54%), enhancement of relationship and communication skills (31%), and visualization and goal setting (31%) were used in interventions. Recommendations for enhancing the development of applied sport psychology in Flanders include specialization in sport psychology at the academic level, continued sport psychology consultation training, and a better coordination between sport psychology consultants and the world of sports.
Marc Theeboom, Paul De Knop and Maureen R. Weiss
Recent research in educational psychology suggests that provision of a mastery motivational climate will maximize enjoyment, perceived competence, and intrinsic motivation in children (Ames, 1992a, 1992b, 1992c). Minimal research has been conducted to test this proposition in the physical domain. The purpose of this study was to examine the effectiveness of a performance versus mastery oriented teaching program on children’s enjoyment, perceived competence, intrinsic motivation, and motor skill development. Children (N = 119) 8 to 12 years of age were randomly assigned to one of the two programs for 3 weeks during an organized sports program. Results revealed that children in the mastery oriented group reported significantly higher levels of enjoyment and exhibited better motor skills than those in the performance oriented group. In-depth interviews further indicated that children in the mastery program were almost unanimous in reporting high levels of perceived competence and intrinsic motivation, while those from the traditional group showed less pronounced effects. These results provide empirical evidence that a mastery motivational climate can result in more positive experiences for young athletes as they learn new skills.
Veerle De Bosscher, Simon Shibli, Maarten van Bottenburg, Paul De Knop and Jasper Truyens
This article aims to make a contribution to comparative sport research and details a method for comparing nations’ elite sport systems less descriptively by measuring and comparing determinants of national competitiveness quantitatively. A mixed methods exploratory sequential design is used, consisting of two distinct phases. After qualitative exploration, a conceptual model was developed, revealing that there are nine sport policy dimensions or ‘pillars’ that are important for international sporting success. This article focuses on a second quantitative phase, where the model was tested in a pilot study with six sample nations to develop a scoring system. Data from each nation were collected through an overall sport policy questionnaire completed in each country, and through a survey with the main stakeholders in elite sport, namely athletes (n = 1090), coaches (n = 253), and performance directors (n = 71). Reflecting recognized principles of economic competitiveness measurement, this article demonstrates how 103 critical success factors containing quantitative and qualitative data can be aggregated into a final percentage score for the sample nations on each pillar. The findings suggest that the method is a useful way for objective comparison of nations, but it should not be isolated from qualitative descriptions and from a broader understanding of elite sport systems.