F-31 Free Communication/Poster - Psychological Factors in Sport: MAY 29, 2009 1:00 PM - 6:00 PM ROOM: Hall 4F
The strength and conditioning profession has grown significantly in recent years at the professional, collegiate, and school age levels. Limited research is available describing the background of these professionals. Research has not yet considered what current strength and conditioning coaches believe is required to be an effective coach.
PURPOSE: Profile contemporary collegiate strength and conditioning coaches and determine how personal experience impacts perceived importance for success as a professional.
METHODS: One hundred fifty-six (34 female, 122 male, mean age = 33 years) full-time strength and conditioning coaches at NCAA Division 1 universities responded to an online questionnaire. Items included education, professional certifications, playing experience, coaching experience, physical activity level, and importance of background on effectiveness as a professional.
RESULTS: Descriptive data indicated that most coaches possessed a graduate degree (73%) and those degrees were in an exercise science-related area (67%). The most commonly held certifications were CSCS (78%), USAW (49%), and CSCCa (51%). Many coaches reported collegiate playing experience (54%) and few played sports professionally (14%). Coaches trained in exercise science rated exercise science training as more important than those trained in other areas (p < 0.05). Coaches with collegiate athletic experience rated collegiate playing experience as more important than those with no collegiate experience (p < 0.05). Coaches rating themselves as muscular indicated physical size as more important than those rating themselves as less muscular (p < 0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: Findings indicate that the profession is becoming increasingly educated and trained in exercise science-related fields. Findings further indicate that the background of the coach impacts perceptions regarding the importance of specific characteristics related to the quality of a job applicant in their discipline.