Examine and improve the quality and structure of feedback provided by coaches to players in an elite University rugby club
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Background and Purpose - Feedback is a well researched area within sports psychology and motor skill learning however their has been little research into post competition feedback for sports coaches and players. The purpose of this study was therefore to examine and improve the quality and structure of feedback provided by coaches to players in an elite University rugby club. Participants and Setting – The main participants of the study were the Director of Rugby and a focus group representative of the playing squad of the 1st team within the club. Research Design – An action research process where the coaches systematically and critically reflect on their work and make changes in their practice as a result of their reflection was adopted. The product of action research studies generally include the generation of knowledge about coaching, increased understanding of practice and improvements in coaching. Data Collection - In line with previous action research studies (e.g., Evans et al., 2000) the value of the intervention programme adminstered was evaluated through different approaches to data collection, namely: (a) player focus groups; (b) coach interviews; and (c) researcher observations and reflections. Data analysis - The data was analysed using both inductive and deductive methods. Findings - There is an evidence base for the following: a) for effective feedback to take place there needs to be a clear structure and programme outlining where players and coaches can access it; b) the development of a post performance analysis feedback tool was an effective way of allowing players to view their own footage; c) those players who engaged in the tool felt they had an enhanced level of feedback generated by themselves which was then discussed with the coach; d) for this tool to become more effective, interactive workshops where players and coaches can develop their self reflection and analysis skills need to be implemented. Conclusions - It is thought that these findings have the potential to direct future developments in the provision and effective delivery of feedback within sports settings and help inform coach education programs. The post performance analysis feedback tool has the potential to be developed across sports as well as industries, for example Physical Education lessons.
- Masters Degrees (Sport) 
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