Coaching With Latour in the Sociomateriality of Sport: A Cartography for Practice

Jordan Maclean*, Justine Allen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
23 Downloads (Pure)


While there is increasing recognition that sport is sociomaterial, little is known about what this means for an analysis of coaching practice. This paper develops a cartography of coaching based on an actor–network theory ethnography of two volunteer football coaches’ practices in Scotland. A sociomaterial analysis generates anecdotes that are reordered into five parts: (a) moving from the eleven-a-side game toward a field of practice, (b) delegation, (c) quasi-object, (d) interruptions, and (e) manufacturing. Each part is accompanied with an analytical move inspired by Latourian actor–network theory. Coaching is conceptualized as a field of practice resting on three propositions. The first proposition is that coaches intervene by fabricating passages in practices which are always under construction. The second proposition is that materials and materiality shape practices in ways which can make players more, or less, disciplined. And the third proposition is for a local and situated sociomaterial competence where nonhumans are matters of concern. Coaching with Latour paves the way for a new space in the sociology of sport for studies dedicated to the sociomateriality of sport.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)60-68
JournalSociology of Sport Journal
Issue number1
Early online date3 Aug 2022
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2023
Externally publishedYes

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