Narratives of parental involvement in youth sport
thesisposted on 21.11.2011, 14:23 by Melina Timson-Katchis
This study aimed to explore parents perceptions regarding their involvement in their children s sport. Specifically, the study examined parents understanding of their role as sporting parents and how this role is managed alongside other commitments. Eleven (11) married couples (11 mothers and 11 fathers) from Cyprus and seventeen (17) married couples (17 fathers and 17 mothers) from the UK participated in semi-structured interviews. Narrative analysis revealed that being a sporting parent is challenging, demanding and ever-changing process, which appears to transcend cultural specificity. Parents built up a varied portfolio of roles over two distinct yet interdependent complex social dimensions: (a) the family and (b) the sport. Furthermore, the roles parents fulfilled also varied in terms of their direction, either being personally directed to one person (e.g., athlete) or being directed towards a relationship, with parents acting as facilitators (e.g., towards the coach-athlete relationship or sibling relationships). Overall results illustrated that mothers and fathers take their children s sport seriously by trying to be positive role models and by showing an active interest in the child s development both in and out of sport, whilst dealing with their other children, their marital relationship, and their professional career. Results are discussed in relation to previous research and recommendations are offered for applied practice.
- Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences