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Instructional sport psychology: A re-conceptualisation of sports coaching as sport instruction

journal contribution
posted on 1997-04-01, 00:00 authored by C Sherman, Boris Crassini, W Maschette, R Sands
In this paper we present a conceptual analysis of the typical sports coaching context (i.e., where participants in an activity involving skilled motor performance receive coaching from an expert which is designed to «transform» the participants into more expert performers). Our analysis is based on concepts derived from the discipline of instructional psychology. Using as a starting point Snow and Swanson's (1992) review of the essential aspects of instructional theory, we re-conceptualise sports coaching as a form of instruction, and propose six fundamental components of the sports coaching context: we term this re-conceptualisation Instructional Sport Psychology. The six components are: Achievement (involving detailed specification of the motor skills to be performed after instruction); Aptitude (involving accurate specification of the novice's status with respect to the required motor skills prior to instruction); Learning (involving explicit specification of the physiological and psychological processes that are assumed to determine the transition from novice to expert performer); Instruction (involving the explicit specification of the instructional processes that are taken to promote this transition from novice to expert); Achievement evaluation (involving assessment of the learner's performance in relation to the specification of the required motor skills following instruction); and Instruction evaluation (involving reflection on, and assessment of, the process of instruction by the coach and learner). Our purpose in this re-conceptualisation is to provide a more holistic analysis of the coaching context than is typically provided (e.g., by theories of motor skill learning and sports pedagogy). Furthermore, by proposing the conceptualisation of sports coaching as Instructional Sports Psychology we are attempting to make sports coaching less art and more science. We do this by ensuring that the constructs incorporated in Instructional Sports Psychology are amenable to empirical evaluation, and making specific recommendations for such evaluation.

History

Journal

International Journal of Sport Psychology

Volume

28

Issue

2

Pagination

103 - 125

ISSN

0047-0767

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