Systematic review of the effectiveness of interpersonal coach education interventions on athlete outcomes

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Objectives:To systematically review and evaluate the literature on the effectiveness of coach education interventions. Specifically, we aimed to: (a) describe the non-formal coach education interventions aimed at coaches' interpersonal knowledge base, (b) highlight underpinning theoretical models, (c) assess the methodological quality of articles evaluating these interventions, (d) identify participant characteristics, and (e) establish the effect of these interventions on athletes' cognitive, affective, and behavioural outcomes.Design:Systematic review of published empirical research.Method:Published English language articles were identified using electronic databases and manual searches of reference lists. The quality of the identified articles was assessed using the Effective Public Health Practice Project (EPHPP) tool.Results:Four interventions fulfilled the inclusion criteria and were thus systematically reviewed. Overall, education interventions based on coach effectiveness training and achievement goal theory produced mixed effects on a variety of athlete outcomes, such as anxiety, self-esteem, fear of failure, and motivational orientation.Conclusions:Due to the diversity in athlete outcomes and intervention design, it is difficult to draw firm conclusions around the effectiveness of coach education interventions. The small number of identified interventions highlights the current paucity of empirical data on coach education intervention effectiveness. More research is needed to further our understanding of intervention effectiveness to allow for growth and improvement in coach education. Furthermore, theory-based, rather than “theory inspired” coach education interventions are required.

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