Interpersonal communication and conflict in the coach athlete relationship

concerning interpersonal relationships between coach and athlete interactions, has sport communication, talk about anything, and other awareness); (3) Motivation: indicates . conflict that might occur along the way with the relationship. knowledge and understanding of interpersonal rules can help people . coach- athlete communication and conflict in an attempt to establish. The three key constructs used to examine coach-athlete relationship are Conflict is defined as the experience of incompatibility between people (Deutsch In the interviews, these coaches emphasized the importance of communication (i.e.

Ways to maintain relationships may include discussing an area of disagreement and coming to a joint decision of how it can be resolved i.

Although no sport psychology research has directly considered relationship maintenance within the coach-athlete relationship, some research appeared to address issues related to maintenance strategies.

In the interviews, these coaches emphasized the importance of communication i. Thus, the use of maintenance strategies in sport has been indirectly associated with positive outcomes. ReferencesShow all Coatsworth, J. Enhancing the self-esteem of youth swimmers through coaching training: Gender and age effects. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 22 7, Definitions and theoretical perspectives on maintaining relationships. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 10, Coaching life skills through football: A study of award-winning high-school coaches.

Journal of Applied Sport 10 Psychology, 19, The Psychologist, 18 7 Incompatibility in the Coach-Athlete Relationship. Solutions in Sport Psychology, The mediating role of relationship quality was broadly as important as dyadic coping for coaches. These findings provide an insight in to how coach—athlete dyads interact to manage stress and indicate that relationship quality is of particular importance for coaches, but less important for athletes. In order to improve perceptions of relationship quality among coaches and athletes, interventions could be developed to foster positive dyadic coping among both coaches and athletes, which may also impact upon stress appraisals of challenge and threat.

Introduction Participating in sport can be stressful see Arnold and Fletcher, for a reviewso it is important that athletes cope effectively with any stress encountered. Indeed, dyadic accounts of appraisals and coping, which explore how two people within the same stressful incident evaluate stress and subsequently interact to cope are therefore needed Folkman, ; Herzberg, Due to the nature of sport, athletes and coaches are likely to be involved in the same stressful encounters i.

Dyadic Coping A partnership that operates in many sports involves a coach and an athlete Jackson et al. Indeed, Jackson et al. Furthermore, coach—athlete interactions also influence technical and physical competencies Jowett and Poczwardowski,in addition to being related to psychological constructs such as coping Nicholls et al.

To date, however, there are no published accounts of dyadic coping between a coach and his or her athlete. Essentially, dyadic coping relates to the way in which a couple interacts to cope Berg and Upchurch, The primary purpose of dyadic coping is to reduce stress for both members Bodenmann, There are some similarities between dyadic coping and a construct previously examined in the sport psychology literature, namely, social support.

Both constructs are associated with stress reducing qualities i. Nevertheless, there are key conceptual differences between dyadic coping and social support. For example, dyadic coping is exclusively concerned with the way a couple interact to cope, whereas social support is much broader and includes support relating to boosting pleasant emotions or esteem, providing informational advice, or practical assistance Freeman et al.

As such, social support may be provided in the absence of stress e. Furthermore, an athlete may receive social support from a variety of different individuals e. It is important to note that Lazarus and Folkman conceived coping at the dispositional and process levels.

In particular, they argued that dispositional coping i. Assessing coping at the dispositional level represents an accurate method of assessing trends in behavior over a long period of time Fleeson, and may also reveal habitual or generalized patterns of coping behavior that process assessments fail to capture Hurst et al. This is paramount when very little is known about a particular type of coping e. There is an emerging trend of assessing coping at the dispositional level within the sport psychology literature to assess how coping is related to constructs such as cognitive-social maturity Nicholls et al.

Dyadic coping is triggered when one member of the dyad communicates stress to the other via verbal or non-verbal communications, with the other partner responding with some form of dyadic coping Bodenmann, As such, Bodenmann argued that dyadic coping is interactive and reciprocal. Bodenmann distinguished between positive and negative types of dyadic coping. Positive dyadic coping includes three distinct types of coping: Negative dyadic coping involves hostile, ambivalent, or superficial responses to the other person and represents support that is insincere or unwillingly provided Rottmann et al.

Although scholars are yet to examine dyadic coping between coaches and athletes, there is an emerging body of dyadic coping within the relationship literature, among married couples.

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For example, dyadic coping was a stronger predictor of relationship satisfaction than individual coping Herzberg, In another study, Rottmann et al. Negative dyadic coping was adversely associated with outcomes for both partners, whereas common dyadic coping was associated with superior relationship quality and fewer depressive symptoms. As such, it appears that dyadic coping may influence the relationship quality between two people.

Within a sport setting, Tamminen et al. This includes four constructs: Although there are a number of adaptive outcomes of a stronger coach—athlete relationship, at the present time, little is known about how dyadic coping may be associated with the coach—athlete relationship.

On understanding the nature of interpersonal conflict between coaches and athletes.

As dyadic coping includes interactions between two people, it is plausible that this form of coping will be related to relationship quality. Further, little is known about whether dyadic coping or indeed the coach—athlete relationship is associated with stress appraisals. Given that the coach—athlete relationship is related to emotions i. Research is required to test whether there is an association between dyadic coping and appraisals experienced within the same dyad, in order to assess this assertion.

Stress Appraisals The way in which a person evaluates the significance of a situation in regards to his or her personal goals, which might be endangered is known as stress appraisal Lazarus, Athletes can anticipate either a loss or gain occurring Lazarus, Anticipated losses, such sustaining an injury or losing an upcoming match, can be referred to as threat appraisals. Alternatively, if an athlete anticipates some form of gain such as impressing a selector or winning a monetary award, this would be considered a challenge appraisal Lazarus, Guided by the BPSM Blascovich,scholars recently explored the implications of challenge and threat perceptions among athletes.

Challenge states were associated with superior performance, less anxiety, and conscious processing than threat states Moore et al. Furthermore, appraisals of challenge and threat states can be manipulated in order to maximize performance.

In particular, Moore et al. Understanding more about the antecedents of challenge and threat appraisals, such as dyadic coping and the coach—athlete relationship quality, may provide psychologists with additional mechanisms to manipulate the occurrence of challenge states, other than those tested by Moore et al.

Summary and Hypotheses We hypothesized a positive association between positive dyadic coping and relationship quality, but a negative path between negative dyadic coping and relationship quality. This is because scholars previously reported an association between positive dyadic and relationship quality, whereas negative dyadic coping was negatively associated with relationship quality among couples dealing with breast cancer Rottmann et al.

We also predicted a positive path from relationship quality to challenge appraisals, but a negative path from relationship quality to threat appraisals.

It is acknowledged that appraisals are usually modeled to precede coping in many studies i. Conceptually, Lazarus and Folkman viewed stress and coping as a reciprocal and dynamic constructs. As such Lazarus and Folkman theorized that appraisals generate coping, in addition to coping influencing subsequent stress appraisals.

We hypothesized positive paths between positive dyadic coping and challenge, along with negative dyadic coping and threat, but negative paths between positive dyadic coping and threat, in addition to negative dyadic coping and challenge.

Researchers from the sport literature found a link between adaptive forms of coping and challenge appraisals, whereas less adaptive forms of coping are associated with threat appraisals e. As such, it is plausible that dyadic coping and appraisals would be related. An APIM is able to simultaneously estimate the impact of actor effects horizontal within a group and partner effects diagonal from one group on another.

Typically, APIMs contain predictor and outcome variables. We hypothesized, however, that the relationships between our predictor dyadic coping and outcome stress appraisal would be mediated by perceived relationship quality.

The sample consisted of dyads who were involved in team sports and 26 dyads from individual sports. The athletes reported a mean playing experience of 9.

Importance of the coach-athlete relationship

The mean relationship duration was 1. The DCI is a item questionnaire that measures positive and negative dyadic coping. Two of the original items: Please read carefully the statements below and circle the answer that indicates whether you agree or disagree.

Jowett and Ntoumanis reported Cronbach alpha coefficients of 0. The SAM was developed outside the sport psychology literature, but is widely used among athletic populations i. Although the SAM is usually used to measure anticipated stressors, similar to the present study, Gan et al.

Participants completed four challenge questions e. Peacock and Wong reported Cronbach alpha coefficients of 0. Procedure A university department ethics committee granted ethical approval for this study. Following ethical approval, information letters were sent to coaches and athletes.

The information letter included background information on the study, requirements of the participating, and rights of all participants.

If the athletes and their coaches decided to take part in the study, they signed a consent form. Coaches and athlete received an appropriately worded questionnaire pack, which contained the DCI Levesque et al.

In instances where more than one athlete with same coach participated in the study, the coach was required to complete a separate questionnaire pack for each athlete he or she coached, so the information reported related to the specific coach—athlete dyad.

Interpersonal communication and conflict in the coach-athlete relationship.

Data Analysis Preliminary data analysis comprised of screening for outliers, missing data, and univariate normality using descriptive statistics.

Internal consistency was assessed using omega point estimates and bootstrapped confidence intervals, as recommended by Dunn et al. Bivariate correlations were used to explore relationships between coach variables, athlete variables, and coach to athlete variables. For the sake of interpretation, two figures are provided to illustrate model paths; Figure 1 shows only the actor effects and Figure 2 shows only the partner effects.

In practice, all effects are estimated within one saturated model. Actor—Partner Interdependence Mediation Model showing actor effects only. X1, coach positive dyadic coping; X2, coach negative dyadic coping; X3, athlete positive dyadic coping; X4, athlete negative dyadic coping; M1, coach relationship quality; M2, athlete relationship quality; Y1, coach challenge; Y2, coach threat; Y3, athlete challenge; Y4, athlete threat.

E1 to E6, error terms. Actor—Partner Interdependence Mediation Model showing partner effects only. Covariances and error terms excluded to improve clarity. Results Preliminary analyses revealed that less than 0.

On understanding the nature of interpersonal conflict between coaches and athletes.

As departures from multivariate normality were to be addressed in the main, no transformation was required. All subscales comfortably exceeded the generally acceptable level of greater than 0. Descriptive statistics, univariate normality estimates, and omega point estimates with confidence intervals. Correlational Analysis Pearson bivariate correlations between variables were calculated separately for athlete and coach scores Table 2 and for combined coach and athlete scores Table 3.

Challenge was positively associated with positive dyadic coping and relationship quality for both coaches and athletes. Threat was positively associated with negative dyadic coping but negatively associated with positive dyadic coping and relationship quality in both coaches and athletes Table 2.

Bivariate correlations between variables for separate coach and athlete pairings. Bivariate correlations from combined coach—athlete variables and coach to athlete pairings. The correlations presented in Table 3 highlight the relationship between combined coach—athlete variables, in addition to coach and athlete scores.