The researcher used phenomenological research method to gather information concerning athletes’ experiences of great coaching (Becker, 2009). This form of qualitative research follows different steps as shown herein.
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Exploring researcher bias – at this stage, the researcher sought to understand the athletes’ experiences from individual perspective as opposed to gathering information from existing literature. Therefore, the researcher interviewed the athletes. This strategy was appropriate as it eliminated bias in interpretation of data, which might be present in existing literatures.
Selection criteria – the researcher first sought the approval to carry the research before inviting different athletes for the research. For one to be included in the research (inclusion/exclusion criteria), she/he had to have taken part in high-level competition, have experience of great coaching, and willing to give unbiased information concerning his or her experiences. Ultimately, the researcher selected 18 participants with 50% of them being men. The selection criterion was appropriate for the aim of the research.
Data collection – Interviews were used to collect data whereby open-ended questions were used. The data was collected in a way that addressed the research purpose.
Data analysis – The recorded interviews were transliterated, which ended up in 220-single spaced pages of raw data. The researcher read the data for the first time and then the second time in which repeated themes were noted. Different meaning units with similar patterns or themes were clustered, which eventually were grouped as general themes. The existential phenomenological data interpretation applied was suitable for this form of qualitative study as it filtered and clustered the right information, which was then taken as the general meaning of the research.
Confirming thematic structure – At this final stage, the athletes’ feedback was sought whereby they were given their transcribed data to make corrections or changes and later they were given the final copy of results to see if the results were congruent with their experiences.
This qualitative methodology was the most appropriate for this study as it gave a clear picture of the athletes’ experiences of great coaching, which was the purpose of this study. The length of the study was not indicated.
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From the analysis, the researcher came up with six major dimensions of athletes’ experiences of great coaching. The results indicated that the relationship between coaching actions and influences determines the quality of athletes’ experiences. On one side, the coaching actions are subject to coach attributes and environment, while the influences are dependent on system and relationships.
This research sought to add to the existing literature on sports coaching by investigating athletes’ experiences with great coaching. The researcher came up with straightforward objective of the study, but failed to include a hypothesis. In addition, the researcher used phenomenological research method, which was appropriate for the study. The results proved that great coaching could not be defined through the lenses of win-loss situations. Future research should focus on the relationship between marriage status of athletes and their experiences with great coaching. Do married athletes have better experiences as compared to unmarried ones? This question will determine if the athletes’ experiences are subject to other external factors. The researcher may also consider including more participants for more generalized results.
I am highly interested in the relationship between athletes and coaches, and this article relates to this topic of interest, which underscores its helpfulness to my studies.
Becker, A. (2009). It’s not what they do, it’s how they do it: Athlete experiences of great coaching. International Journal of Sports Science & Coaching, 4(1), 93-119.