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Title:The co-creation of athlete development: A conjoint analysis of parents' and coaches' preferences for effective athlete development
Author(s):Horne, Edward
Director of Research:Green, B. Christine
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Green, B. Christine
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Chalip, Laurence; Buckley, Cynthia; Welty Peachey, Jon; Woolf, Jules
Department / Program:Recreation, Sport and Tourism
Discipline:Recreation, Sport, and Tourism
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree:Ph.D.
Genre:Dissertation
Subject(s):Conjoint analysis
athlete development
youth sport programs
coaches
parents
Abstract:Youth athletes’ development is heavily influenced by key adults in their lives. Youth sport administrators create and implement the programs in which they participate, coaches design and implement practices and provide feedback to enhance skill and competitive success, while parents provide resources and support to enable opportunities for development and achievement. Each has the best interests of the athlete in mind, yet rarely do they work together effectively and intentionally to facilitate the optimal development of young athletes. Researchers have studied youth sport coaches as well as parents of youth sport participants, but have done so independently. Much of this research has focused on attitudes and behaviors of parents or coaches. Few researchers have examined the structural context and the contingencies affecting parents or coaches of youth sport. Even fewer have sought to unpack the dynamics between parents and coaches that can impact the experience and outcomes of youth athletes. The purpose of the study was to determine the utility coaches and parents place on key program components, identify issues of alignment for effective athlete development and determine the impact of parents’ and coaches’ own experiences and their sources of information. The study was guided by Ranjan and Read’s core dimension of co-production, which is described by three key concepts: equity, interaction, and knowledge sharing. Further, the study drew from the theoretical framework of consumer confusion, as parents are often overwhelmed with having to choose the appropriate sports program from their children from the plethora of programs that exist. Insight was also drawn from the athlete development literature. Parents (n=240) and coaches (n=198) of youth tennis players completed online surveys. Surveys included a choice-based conjoint model of sport program components, forcing respondents to trade-off program components against each other, to determine their relative importance for each program component. Surveys also asked parents and coaches for the level of importance various sources of information, as well as including questions pertaining to their background knowledge and experiences. Results indicated instances of alignment, including both groups preference for the shared responsibility option over athlete development decision making. However, many significant areas of misalignment that inhibit parents’ and coaches’ ability to effectively co-create were also found, which likely impacts the development of athletes. Specifically, significant differences were found on parents’ and coaches’ importance for the annual cost of programs, the overall responsibility for athlete development decisions, and program reputation. Findings also demonstrated the need to consider differences within each group. Parents value for program components differed according to their playing background/experience, while coaches differed in their value for components due to being certified or not, as well as the form of their compensation. These findings provide a crucial foundation for understanding how to improve the effectiveness of parent and coach relationships in the private, revenue-driven youth sport environment. Parents and coaches both preferred the option of sharing responsibility over athlete development. This is important as parent-coach relationships are deemed an important component of the youth sport experience. The desire to work together appears to be there. We must therefore determine how to make this happen. As we work towards this objective it is imperative we do away with the one-size-fits-all approach to parents and coaches, instead, designing education and assistance that accounts for their varying needs and expectations.
Issue Date:2019-04-17
Type:Text
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/104849
Rights Information:Copyright 2019 Edward Horne
Date Available in IDEALS:2019-08-23
Date Deposited:2019-05


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