Values in Youth Sport and Physical Education: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Values in Youth Sport and Physical Education

1st Edition

Edited by Jean Whitehead, Hamish Telfer, John Lambert


280 pages

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Paperback: 9781138940123
pub: 2015-08-21
Hardback: 9780415533065
pub: 2013-12-05
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pub: 2013-12-04
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As sport has become more intense, professional and commercialized so have the debates grown about what constitutes acceptable behaviour and fair play, and how to encourage and develop ‘good’ sporting behaviour, particularly in children and young people. This book explores the nature and function of values in youth sport and establishes a framework through which coaches, teachers and researchers can develop an understanding of the decision-making processes of young athletes and how they choose between playing fairly or cheating to win.

The traditional view of sport participation is that it has a beneficial effect on the social and moral development of children and young people and that it intrinsically promotes cultural values. This book argues that the research evidence is more subtle and nuanced. It examines the concept of values as central organizing constructs of human behaviour that determine our priorities, guide our choices, and transfer across situations, and considers the value priorities and conflicts that are so useful in helping us to understand behaviour in sport. The book argues that teachers and professionals working with children in sport are centrally important agents for value transmission and change and therefore need to develop a deeper understanding of how sport can be used to encourage pro-social values, and offers suggestions for developing a curriculum for teaching values through sport in differing social contexts.

Spanning some of the fundamental areas of sport practice and research, including sport psychology, sport pedagogy, practice ethics, and positive youth development through sport, and including useful values and attitudes questionnaires and guidance on their use and interpretation, this book is important reading for any student, researcher, coach or teacher with an interest in youth sport or physical education.


"It is rare to find a body of work that presents a definitive consistent and comprehensive framework over time. One of the real insights and benefits of the book … is how it might … develop and evolve a research agenda …The work developed here on a values framework for sport is extremely helpful, particularly for youth and children. Where it perhaps has its greatest value, however, is not in the research findings provided, but in terms of the implications such findings have on coaching practice. Of particular interest remain the questions as to why it is that despite all the best evidence about the need for an approach to coaching that places the needs and interests of the child first, for the most part, the sports coaching environment seems relatively powerless to challenge the ideology of performance." Alun Hardman, Sports Coaching Review

"There is much to commend Values in Youth Sport and Physical Education. Its content is topical, innovative, and has an international perspective and is, in the main, evidence-based. As noted above, the timing of the publication of this book is most appropriate given current discussions and controversy regarding ethical behaviour in sport and a need to develop "good" sporting behaviours early in life. Accordingly, this book represents an excellent resource in the relatively new field of youth values in sport and physical education by providing a sound foundation for studying fair play and children’s decision-making in these contexts." Janet A. Young, Victoria University, International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology

Table of Contents

Introduction: Exploring youth sport values - Editorial Team 1. Why are sport and physical education valuable?: Values, sport, and physical education - Cathy Devine and Hamish Telfer PART I: Values, attitudes, and achievement goals 2. What sport values do young people hold?: Values in children’s sport: Spontaneously expressed values by young athletes - Martin Lee and Mike Cockman 3. Which sport values are most important to young people?: The measurement of values in youth sport: Development of the Youth Sport Values Questionnaire - Martin Lee, Jean Whitehead, and Nick Balchin 4. How important are ethical attitudes?: Development of the Attitudes to Moral Decision-making in Youth Sport Questionnaire - Martin Lee, Jean Whitehead, and Nikos Ntoumanis 5. How do values influence attitudes and achievement goals?: Relationships among values, achievement orientations and attitudes in youth sport - Martin Lee, Jean Whitehead, Nikos Ntoumanis, and Antonis Hatzigeorgiadis 6. How similar are sport values in different nations?: Exploring cross-cultural value systems - Jean Whitehead and Carlos Gonçalves 7. How do values relate to motivation?: Values and motivational processes in sport: An AGT and SDT perspective - Isabel Balaguer, Isabel Castillo, Eleanor Quested, and Joan Duda PART 2: Value transmission and value change 8. How does value structure underlie value conflict?; To win fairly or to win at all costs? A conceptual framework for value-change interventions in sport - Anat Bardi and Shalom Schwartz 9. How can we teach values through sport?: Teaching values through sport in divided societies - John Lambert 10. How does coach behaviour change the motivational climate?: The creation of a learning environment conducive to the transmission of prosocial values - John Lambert 11. How important are the values of significant others?: The influence of teachers and type of school on pupils’ values - Paul Freeman, Alec Leslie, Hannah Ledger and Craig Williams 12. How can sport practitioners balance conflicting values?: Ethics, values, and practice: A reflective dialogue on ethical dilemmas and coaching practice - Hamish Telfer and Zoe Knowles PART 3: Overview 13. What questions remain: Further thoughts and future directions - Editorial Team

About the Editors

Jean Whitehead was an international long jumper and physical education teacher before coordinating the disciplines in human movement studies at Bedford College of Higher Education, UK, where she taught sport psychology. In research at the University of Brighton, UK, she focused on achievement goal perspectives, and measuring values.

Hamish Telfer was course leader at the University of Cumbria, UK, for the postgraduate degree in Sports Coaching. Now retired, he is still actively involved in research and publication in sports coaching, particularly practice ethics and reflective practice. He has been a Great Britain Team Coach for Cross Country.

John Lambert is a Senior Lecturer in Sport Coaching and Physical Education at the University of Brighton, UK. He works in talent ID for a Premier League football club. His main research interest is teaching values through sport having worked on a major international sport for development project for over ten years.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SPORTS & RECREATION / Sports Psychology
SPORTS & RECREATION / Sociology of Sports