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کاوش بوم شناختی مسیرهای تخصصی ورزش
An Ecological Exploration of Sport Specialization Pathways
Youth sport specialization has been a sustained area of interest in academic and practical settings. Though preliminary findings of the relationship between athletes’ pathways of sport participation and their sport outcomes posit early specialization in a single sport as potentially harmful to an athlete’s physical and psychological well-being, concern that athletes are specializing earlier, and to a greater degree, than ever before remains pervasive. In analyzing potential explanations for this logical gap between recommendations and perceived behaviors, one notable gap of the literature is the lack of ecological, systems-based research that may better clarify what drives athletes to specialize in a single sport.
In this study, a developmental, ecological, perception-based approach was used to explore youth athletes’ pathways of sport participation (specifically, why they chose to specialize or play multiple sports) in relation to their ecological characteristics and subsequent sport experiences. To do so, a conceptual, ecological framework was developed to inform the design of this study, and the nature and strength of relationships between variables of this novel heuristic provided an initial understanding of the ecology of sport participation pathways.
132 current high school athletes participated in this study’s testing battery, which surveyed elements of their sport participation, personal and contextual characteristics, their sport specialization behaviors and perceptions, and their expectations and subsequent experiences related to their chosen pathway. Results of this study highlighted several significant group differences and relationships between variables, and due to the exploratory nature of this study the non-significant findings also served as a hypothesis-generating mechanism for future research. Implications of these findings were explored in their relation to previous sport specialization literature and the study’s guiding theoretical framework (i.e., the Developmental Model of Sport Participation and the Person-Process-Context-Time Ecological Model), and the results underscored the importance of accounting for the influence of context and competitive climate in understanding youth athletes’ selected sport pathways and subsequent experiences.
تغییر بازی: ورزش دانشگاهی برای توسعه مهارت های رهبری تحول آفرین در دانشجویان دختر ورزشکار
Changing the Game: University Sport to Develop Transformational Leadership Skills in Female Student-Athletes
In collegiate sport in Canada, 24% of athletic directors and only 17% of head coaches are female, with even less female representation across national team and Olympic coaches (CAAWS, 2016). To address this issue of gender inequity in sport leadership, the study explored how a university sport program can lead and support female student-athletes to develop transformational leadership skills. Through a cooperative inquiry inspired approach with a feminist framework, the study gathered the experiences and reflections of seven members of the Mount Saint Vincent University athletics department to find how the university sport program could help female student-athletes learn and practice transformational leadership skills. A thematic analysis of transcribed CI reflection meetings and observation notes found the university sport program helped to develop skills in each component of transformational leadership while combating feminist issues in sport. Organizational culture of the athletics department helped to support and facilitate these opportunities through shared values, athletic leaders, ‘see it to be it’, growth mindset, and believing everyone is a leader. Challenges were faced in the process (time, staying intentional and player load); however, learning environments that included intentional planning (session planning, resources and community events/volunteering) and reflective exploration (self-reflection, debriefing with athletic leaders and group discussions) were found to mitigate the aforementioned challenges. By using university sport programs to more effectively develop female student-athletes into transformational leaders, these women will be better prepared to lead in sport and in society.