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Wade D. Gilbert and Guest Editor

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Wade D. Gilbert and Pierre Trudel

Similar to a belief system, a role frame acts as a perceptual filter that influences how practitioners define their professional responsibilities (Schön, 1983). The purpose of this article is to present the role frame components of model youth team sport coaches. The results are based on a two-year multiple-case study with six coaches. On average, the coaches’ role frame comprised two boundary components and nine internal components. Boundary components are objective environmental conditions that can influence an individual’s approach to coaching. Internal role frame components are personal views a coach holds regarding youth sport coaching. A discussion of how role frames can be examined and used by researchers, coaches, and coach educators is provided.

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Wade D. Gilbert and Pierre Trudel

The present study examined how model youth sport coaches learn to coach through experience. Yin’s multiple-case study approach was used with six youth team sport coaches. Data were collected over an entire sport season through a series of semi-structured interviews, observations, and documents. All six case study coaches developed and refined coaching strategies through a process of reflection. Six components characterized reflection: coaching issues, role frame, issue setting, strategy generation, experimentation, and evaluation. A reflective conversation comprising the latter four components, triggered by coaching issues and bound by the coach’s role frame, was central to reflection. The selection of options at each stage in a reflective conversation was influenced by access to peers, a coach’s stage of learning, issue characteristics, and the environment. Furthermore, three types of reflection were evident: reflection-in-action, reflection-on-action, and retrospective reflection-on-action.

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Rachael Bertram and Wade Gilbert

Continuing professional development (CPD) for sport coaches has been defined as all kinds of professional learning that occurs after initial certification (Nelson et al., 2006), and includes both non-formal and informal learning situations. Despite the fact that within the past decade there has been an increasing number of studies on these learning situations, learning communities as a type of CPD have received little attention. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to share initial observations and lessons learned from creating and implementing sport coach learning communities. In addition, this paper extends the dialogue on learning community implementation and assessment. Our learning community efforts were formulated around five key guidelines: (1) Stable settings dedicated to improving instruction and learning, (2) Job-alike teams, (3) Published protocols that guide but do not prescribe, (4) Trained peer facilitators, and (5) Working on student learning goals until there are tangible gains in student learning.

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Diane M. Culver, Wade D. Gilbert and Pierre Trudel

Part of the on-going dialogue on qualitative research in sport and exercise psychology, this review portrays the qualitative articles published in three sport psychology journals and examines how qualitative research can deepen our knowledge in applied sport psychology. Eighty-four of the 485 research articles published in these journals used a qualitative data collection technique. The interview was used in 67 studies. Peer review and reliability tests were often used for establishing trustworthiness. Member checking was mostly limited to participant verification of interview transcripts. Results were usually presented using both words and numbers. Selected studies are discussed in relation to applied sport psychology knowledge. Published qualitative articles suggest a conservative effort by sport psychology researchers to include the qualitative approach as a legitimate way to do research.

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Wade D. Gilbert, Pierre Trudel and Leon P. Haughian

This study provided a descriptive analysis of the interactive decision making factors considered by coaches of youth ice hockey (aged 10–15 years) during games. Using a multiple–case study design, data were collected using a combination of semistructured interviews and an adapted version of stimulated recall interviews. An inductive analysis of the interview transcripts revealed 5 types of interactive decisions, 5 types of goals, and 21 types of factors. The factors were regrouped into two categories (Field Information and Coach Knowledge) and four subcategories (Objective Information, Subjective Information, Player Characteristics, and Knowledge of the Game). Although individual coach differences were found, important cross-coach similarities also emerged. On average, between 2.6 and 3.2 factors were cited for each interactive decision. The adoption of dichotic (yes-no) decision making models based exclusively on player performance, and the ecological validity of conducting lab-based studies to examine the interactive decision making of coaches, is challenged.

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Julia Allain, Gordon A. Bloom and Wade D. Gilbert

Competitions in many team sports include short breaks (e.g., intermissions, halftime) where coaches have a unique opportunity to make tactical adjustments and communicate with athletes as a group. Although these breaks are significant coaching moments, very little is known about what successful coaches do during this time. The purpose of this study was to examine intermission routines and knowledge of highly experienced and successful National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) ice hockey coaches. A thematic analysis was used to analyze semistructured and stimulated-recall interview data. Results revealed that coaching during intermissions was a continuous process influenced by the coaches’ history and personal characteristics. Drawing on these factors, the coaches created an intermission routine that guided them as they analyzed unpredictable situational factors such as their team’s performance and the athletes’ emotional state. Overall, the results offer a rare glimpse into the intermission strategies of successful coaches in a high-performance setting.

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Paul McCarthy, Frank D. Perry, Derek Schwandt and Wade Gilbert

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Kelly A. Wilson, Jenelle N. Gilbert, Wade D. Gilbert and Scott R. Sailor

Seventy-two college athletic directors (ADs) participated in a survey about (a) previous experience with sport psychology consultants (SPCs), (b) previous exposure to the field, and (c) attitudes toward sport psychology consulting. ADs were confused about appropriate training for SPCs, highlighted by the fact that 66.7% were unaware of any certification for SPCs. Although ADs’ attitudes toward SPCs did not differ based on previous experience with SPCs, there was a statistically significant difference between ADs who were aware of the Association for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP) and those who were unaware. Results demonstrate the need to educate potential employers regarding appropriate qualifications for SPCs. The discussion culminates with suggestions for future research and recommendations for enhancing effectiveness of outreach programs.