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Experiential learning in professional Rugby Union

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posted on 23.06.2014, 15:02 by Sam Lloyd
The aim of this thesis was to understand the role played by experiential learning in professional Rugby Union. Furthermore, to understand how performance information is utilised by coaches and athletes in every day practice. The thesis employed an ethnographic research method, utilising extensive participant observation, interviews, and document analysis. The thesis draws significantly on the theoretical tools of Schön, Bourdieu and Foucault. The key results and findings were that coaches used performance related information as a technology of self , and inculcated a hegemonic ideology. Furthermore, power relations were found and manifested inside the coach / athlete relation that reinforced the coaches spatial and temporal dominance. These dominant power relations were legitimised through the omnipresent ideology, and thus reproduced by the players and coaches. While evidence of experiential learning was documented, particularly with the academy players, the social location of practice marginalised the value of experiential learning in the coaching process. This was because performance information and the use of video based reflection were consistently used as tools of coaching authority, discipline and symbolic violence.





  • Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences


© Sam Lloyd

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A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.

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