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June I. Decker

The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of selected variables upon role conflict as experienced by teacher/coaches in small colleges and universities. Three types of role conflict—intersender, intrasender, and person-role—were considered. The effects of the gender of the teacher/coach, number of teams coached, type of sport coached, type of classes taught, and role preferred by the teacher/coach were examined. Survey data were collected from 735 randomly selected teacher/coaches from small colleges. The Role Conflict Scale was used to determine the amount of role conflict experienced by the subjects. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) techniques were used to test the hypotheses. Results indicated that subjects who preferred the singular role of coaching experienced significantly more intersender and person-role conflict than those who preferred the dual role of teaching and coaching.

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Allen L. Sack and Robert Thiel

Data from a national survey of college basketball players are analyzed to identify conditions that cause student athlete role conflict and the coping mechanisms used to make this conflict more manageable. NCAA division was found to be strongly related to role conflict regardless of the measure used. Gender was also found to have an impact. Role conflict was also related to scholarship status, the number of hours athletes perceive they must devote to basketball, and whether they believe their coaches make unreasonable demands on their time and energy. It was also found that athletes who ranked low in their high school graduating class and had sought help from an academic counselor were more likely than others to deal with role conflict by taking various academic shortcuts. One final conclusion is that the vast majority of college athletes, with the exception of Division I males, have little problem reconciling their roles as athletes and students.

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Michael Bar-Eli, Arie Shirom, Michal Nir and Ayala Malach Pines

Ninety female athletes at the international and/or national level, engaged in sports that are either “feminine” (n=49) or “non-feminine” (n=41), participated in this study. We predicted (a) a positive relation between role conflict and burnout; and (b) higher role conflict and burnout among athletes from “non-feminine” sports. Questionnaire results revealed a positive relation between role conflict and burnout, albeit only in “feminine” sports. Role conflict was not higher among athletes from “non-feminine” sports. Burnout was somewhat lower among “non-feminine”-sports athletes. “Feminine”-sports athletes were significantly younger, had more training, and felt more restricted by their athletic activity, in comparison to “non-feminine”-sports athletes. Results are interpreted in terms of current theoretical perspectives, such as the “expansionist” approach.

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Elaine M. Blinde and Susan L. Greendorfer

This paper is a synthesis of results from five separate studies examining how recent structural and philosophical changes in women’s intercollegiate sport programs may have altered the sport experience of female athletes. Based on both questionnaire and interview data, it was apparent that athletes participating in sport programs characterized by the greatest change (e.g., post-Title IX programs, programs of the 1980s, product-oriented sport models, and Division I programs of recent years) shared somewhat common experiences — with the presence of conflict being one of the most pervasive themes. Four types of conflict were identified: (a) value alienation, (b) role strain, (c) role conflict, and (d) exploitation. Each of these types of conflict is discussed and examples to substantiate the presence of each form of conflict are presented. Based upon the findings, it is suggested that the changing context and emphases of college sport may have exposed female athletes to different sets of circumstances, expectations, and experiences, thus altering the nature of the sport experience and bringing into question the educational legitimacy of college sport.

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Jennifer E. Bruening and Marlene A. Dixon

The current study examined, via online focus groups, the consequences of work–family conflict at work and at home with 41 mothers who are Division I head coaches. In addition, the authors focused on the coping mechanisms that these women used to achieve success at work and quality of life with family. Results revealed that work–family conflict influenced outcomes with work (e.g., staffing patterns, relationships with athletes, team performance), family (e.g., time spent and relationships with children and spouses or partners), and life (e.g., guilt and exhaustion, balance and perspective, weaving work and family). Coping mechanisms included stress relief, self-awareness, organization and time management, sacrificing aspects of work, support networks, flexibility with hours, and family-friendly policies and cultures. Implications are that the women work to promote change within their circle of influence. Although their efforts might not result in actual policy changes, over which they feel limited control, they might result in changes in perceptions and attitudes.

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Ellen Macro, Jennifer Viveiros and Nick Cipriano

This study explores female freestyle wrestlers’ experiences related to identity, body consciousness, (hetero)sexuality, and (conventional) femininity, and also the perceptions of females participating in a traditionally male-dominated sport. Data was collected from questionnaires distributed to 47 high school, university, and club female wrestlers and from in-depth interviews with eight university wrestlers. Based on the findings, the researchers suggest that female wrestlers are comfortable with their body; that public perception concerning their sexuality and femininity is not an issue of concern for them; and that they do not experience gender-role conflict nor engage in the female apologetic. The results are of particular interest because they differ from what other studies have concluded regarding the experiences of women in(traditionally male-dominated sports.

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Joy Griffin and Mary B. Harris

In this study, two groups of sport psychologists (N = 107) were surveyed six years apart to (a) identify sources of stress and rate the intensity of selected stressors, (b) investigate gender and other demographic variables associated with stress, and (c) determine if level of stress had changed over time. Self-reported stressors included time demands, interpersonal interactions, role conflict, limited resources, credibility, marketing/business issues, lack of support, professional isolation, politics, research, teaching loads, ethical issues, job security, and family demands. Time demands and institutional policies were rated as most stressful. Both gender and tenure status were related to stress, but age, years of experience, and number of hours worked per day did not correlate with intensity of stress. Based upon respondents’ beliefs and a comparison of the two samples we concluded that stress has increased over time.

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Timothy J.L. Chandler and Alan D. Goldberg

The purpose of this study was to assess the perceived importance (salience) of the role-identity of scholar-athlete to high school students. A total of 1,255 students responded to a questionnaire entitled “A Survey of School Climates.” Males perceived obtaining high grades and achieving athletic success—the academic All-American—as most important, while females perceived getting high grades and being a member of the leading group as their most salient role-identities. The results of this study also suggest several potential sources for adolescent role conflict as well as a research methodology for examining the relationship between the adolescent value structure and indices of academic achievement, personal development, and psychological stress.

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Jorid Hovden

The Norwegian Confederation of Sports, the non-profit umbrella organization for all organized sports in Norway, has gradually accepted women’s demands for equal opportunities and full integration at all levels. The situation for women in sports politics and coaching today is characterized by male dominance as well as high drop-out rates and recruiting problems among women.

The aim of the investigation, as basis for this article, was to give women’s experiences within elected posts and coaching a public voice and elaborate why women hesitate to involve themselves or drop-out after a short period of time. The following questions are outlined and discussed:

- What motivates women to take up elected posts and coaching? - What experiences do women have after holding such posts and roles? - What problems and challenges seem to be difficult to face and handle?

The analytical perspective was inspired by the feminist critique of organizations as gender-neutral arenas, and Bourdieu’s analysis of dominance and power within social fields. The empirical material consisted of questionnaire data and data from a search conference. The sample consisted of women holding elected posts, as well as, female coaches.

Based upon the results women as a group within male domains were not empowered to raise and articulate interests and needs as women. The respondents reported an awareness of barriers, role conflicts and dilemmas, but lacked most often the ability to initiate collective emancipatory changes. The established male-dominated practices were seen as selfevident and natural. Many women chose the strategy of exit as the solution to their situation, because the cost of promoting change outweighed the benefits.

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Karen E. Danylchuk

The prevalence of occupational Stressors in physical education faculties/ departments as a function of sex, age, marital status, family status, years of work experience in higher education, and type of appointment was examined through use of the Stress Diagnostic Survey (Ivancevich & Matteson, 1988a). This multidimensional self-report inventory consists of 17 dimensions, which are further subdivided into organizational Stressors (macrostressors) and individual Stressors (microstressors). The sample reported moderate degrees of stress in comparison to the normative data with the macrostressors being greater sources of stress than the microstressors. Quantitative overload was rated the highest followed by time pressure and rewards. Qualitative overload was rated lowest followed by role ambiguity and role conflict. Sex was associated with the greatest number of Stressors—gender discrimination, quantitative overload, and time pressure. Females perceived these three Stressors to be significantly greater sources of stress than did males.