A socio-ecological investigation of the facilitators and barriers to careers in sports coaching: interviews with community and high performance sport coaches

Year: 2015

Author: Apoifis, Nicholas, Bennie, Andrew, Caron, Jeffrey, Perrett, James, Pang, Bonnie

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Previous research has shown that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders have a strong sense of pride and identity associated with sport participation (Campbell & Sonn, 2009). However, there are very few Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island sport coaches and rarely is coaching viewed as a prosperous and lifelong career pathway (Stronach & Adair, 2010). The purpose of this research is to investigate Indigenous sport coaching within Australian sport contexts. Specifically, we are focused on generating strengths based knowledge about the facilitators and barriers into professional coaching roles for Indigenous people. A socio-ecological framework (Bronfenbrenner, 1993) underpins this research and qualitative interviews will be used to capture detailed and personalised accounts about Indigenous sport coaching. Male and female professional and community sport coaches will be invited to participate in semi-structured interviews to capture a holistic account of Indigenous perspectives. The participants will include coaches from various team (e.g., basketball, netball, rugby league, rugby union, field hockey) and individual sports (e.g., boxing, athletics). Data will be analysed using qualitative procedures outlined by Miles and Huberman (1994). Interviews for this project will be conducted in June-August 2015. Initial findings will be presented at the conference. The findings from this research may be used to inform coach education programs about individual, interpersonal, organisational, and societal factors that influence the representation of Indigenous people in sport coaching roles.