The Perceived Psychological Responsibilities of a Strength and Conditioning Coach
Radcliffe, JN, Comfort, P, and Fawcett, T. The perceived psychological responsibilities of a strength and conditioning coach. J Strength Cond Res 32(10): 2853–2862, 2016—Research is limited in exploring the specific psychology-oriented responsibilities of the strength and conditioning professional. The present research explored the psychological responsibilities adopted by accredited strength and conditioning coaches. Participants comprised 10 coaches working within the United Kingdom, 3 within the United States, and 5 within Australia offering a cross-section of experience from various sport disciplines and educational backgrounds. Participants were interviewed either in person or via Skype. Thematic clustering was followed using interpretative phonological analysis to identify common themes. Over half (61%) of the respondents reported that their position as a strength and conditioning coach required additional psychology-oriented responsibilities. These comprised a counseling role in the absence of a psychologist and the use of “softer skills” in a mentoring role to the athlete during a challenging situation. The coach could play an influential role in shaping the mentality of the team. The coach identifies how the role results in working to relay information from the athlete to other support staff and similarly from the support staff to the athlete. In addition to identifying the resonant psychology-oriented responsibilities, discussion is made with...
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