Understanding Sports Coaching : The Pedagogical, Social, and Cultural Foundations of Coaching Practice book cover
4th Edition

Understanding Sports Coaching
The Pedagogical, Social, and Cultural Foundations of Coaching Practice

  • Available for pre-order on May 16, 2023. Item will ship after June 6, 2023
ISBN 9781032026312
June 6, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
280 Pages

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USD $54.99

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Book Description

Every successful sports coach knows that good teaching and social practices are just as important as expertise in sport skills and tactics. Now in a fully revised and updated fourth edition, and introducing a new author team, Understanding Sports Coaching introduces theories and practices while exploring pedagogical, social, and cultural concepts underpinning good sports coaching practice.

Broken into four sections, Understanding Sports Coaching examines the complex interplay between coach, athlete, coaching programme and social context, and encourages coaches to develop an open and reflective approach to their own coaching practice. It covers key aspects of coaching theories and practice, including important and emerging topics, such as:

  • leadership
  • athlete learning
  • emotion in coaching
  • culture as meaning making
  • quality in coaching
  • talent identification and development
  • philosophy and sports coaching

Understanding Sports Coaching also includes a full range of practical exercises and extended case studies designed to encourage coaches to critically reflect upon their own coaching strategies, their interpersonal skills and upon important issues in contemporary sports coaching. This is an essential textbook for any degree-level course in sports coaching, and for any professional coach looking to develop their coaching expertise.

Table of Contents

Setting The Scene

1. Introduction

2. Reflection

Section 1: The Context of Coaching

3. Culture and Meaning Making in Sports Coaching

4. Coaching as a Micropolitical Activity

5. The Professionalisation of Sports Coaching

Section 2: The Coach

6. Philosophy and Sports Coaching

7. Quality in Coaching

8. Leadership

9. The Coach as a Social Performer

Section 3: The Athletes

10. Athlete Learning

11. Emotions and Athlete Learning

12. Development and Talent Identification

Section 4: Knowledge

13. Assessment, Knowledge, and Ability

14. Discourse and (re)production of Coaching Knowledge


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Tania Cassidy is an Associate Professor in the area of Sport Pedagogy, particularly sports coaching. Tania views sports coaching as a social and educational enterprise as well as one which is culturally bound.

Paul Potrac is a Professor of Sports Coaching in the department of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation at Northumbria University, UK. Alongside his academic work, Paul was a football coach for 18 years. He coached male and female teams at various levels in the United Kingdom, the United States of America, and New Zealand.

Steven Rynne, PhD is an Associate Professor in the School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences at The University of Queensland, Australia. With a professional background in, and ongoing research focus on, pedagogy he has extensive expertise fostering sporting outcomes through high quality learning.