The cost of caring: Dave’s story

Colum Cronin, John Hayton, Sören Hjälm, Kathleen Armour

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

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Dave’s story is an important narrative that explores how caring for athletes may reflexively influence the personal and social lives of coaches. The narrative begins by revealing some of the ways that coaches may care for athletes and their wider well-being. For example, Dave uses basketball as a vehicle to support athletes’ education. He also provides pastoral care to athletes with challenging family and social circumstances. This ‘labour’ can, however, be time consuming and emotionally intensive. Accordingly, caring for athletes can have significant negative consequences for coaches’ own personal and social lives. Readers may recognise Dave’s struggles to balance caring for athletes and a passion for sport with his family commitments. To aid readers in such positions, Dave’s story is analysed with reference to sociological literature on emotional labour and psychological literature on burnout. The combination of these literatures is novel and provides theoretical explanations relevant to the wider coaching community. Practical suggestions for coaches who may find caring to be an exhausting form of labour are also included, as are future implications for coach researchers and educators. Thus, the chapter provides an important case study that can impact coach development and coaching practice.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCare in Sport Coaching
Subtitle of host publicationPedagogical Cases
EditorsColum Cronin, Kathleen Armour
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Number of pages23
ISBN (Electronic)9781351109314
ISBN (Print)9780815363491
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jul 2018
Externally publishedYes


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