Research Summaries Research Summary 25 Intervention Tone and Coach - Page 2

Intervention Tone and Coach-athlete Relations Introduction Traditionally, coaching research has looked at what a coach does and what they say. However, what happens if you shift your perspective to that of the person being coached? Research suggests in this case it is not just ‘what’ the coach is saying but ‘how’ they are saying it. Researchers in Canada took this approach to look at what they called ‘intervention tone’ when they undertook a season-long study of volleyball players and coaches. This was not to replace existing theory on behaviour, but rather to build an extra dimension to what is already known. The research was unusual for a number of reasons. Firstly, it set out to observe the intervention tone of the coach rather than behaviour. Secondly, it recognised that coaching, even in team sports, is a series of individualised and unique interactions between a coach and athlete. Therefore it may be the case that over the course of the season players with different developmental trajectories would experience different interactions with their coach. The study drew heavily on the 4Cs model of athlete development. This model takes a holistic view that development encompasses all of the athlete beyond simply their sport skill and ability. In this case the 4Cs being developed within an athlete are Competence, Confidence, Connection and Character.