What motivates the motivators? An examination of sports coaches

Mclean, Kristy N. and Mallett, Clifford J. (2011) What motivates the motivators? An examination of sports coaches. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, 17 1: 21-35. doi:10.1080/17408989.2010.535201

Author Mclean, Kristy N.
Mallett, Clifford J.
Title What motivates the motivators? An examination of sports coaches
Journal name Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1740-8989
Publication date 2011-07-21
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/17408989.2010.535201
Volume 17
Issue 1
Start page 21
End page 35
Total pages 15
Place of publication Oxon, United Kingdom
Publisher Routledge
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Background: Motivation is central to successful performance. In the case of sports
coaches, drive is a prerequisite to sustained successful engagement in a complex,
dynamic, and turbulent work environment. What fuels these coaches’ drive to pursue
this vocational activity? Coach motivation has been underrepresented in previous
research which has typically focused on the crucial impact coach behavior has on
athlete motivation and subsequent sport participation. However, the motivation of
coaches influences their coaching practices and behaviors.
Purpose: The purpose of the current study was to examine the motivation of Australian
sports coaches.
Participants and setting: 13 coaches (nine men, four women) from a range of sports and
levels of competition (i.e. participation, development, high performance) were selected
to take part.
Data collection: Participants were involved in one semi-structured interview lasting 50–
90 minutes that was digitally recorded and transcribed by a professional blind to the
nature of the task.
Data analysis: Content analysis of the interview data was conducted to identify themes.
Higher order themes were based on a process of triangular consensus.
Findings: Data yielded four key dimensions related to why coaches coached: (1)
connection with sport; (2) coach and athlete development; (3) external influences, and
(4) internal influences.
Conclusion: Coaches have a range of motivations driving their continued involvement.
Findings are discussed in light of self-determination theory, and specifically the
importance of promoting high levels of self-determined motivation and psychological
need satisfaction in this population.
Keyword Coaching
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes iFirst article. Available online: 21 Jul 2011

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 16 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Mon, 01 Aug 2011, 03:26:10 EST by Deborah Noon on behalf of School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences