What actually happens during a practice session? A coach’s perspective on developing and delivering practice

Will Vickery, Adam Nichol

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Despite the considerable role coaches play in the development and performance of athletes, the manner in which (i.e. how and why) they develop and implement their practice sessions is mostly unknown. The disconnect between practice and match environments within the sport of cricket makes it challenging for coaches to provide practice environments that encourage player development, are engaging, and allow for transferability. This study looked to gain insight, from the perspective of the coach, into the type of practice environments and activities that cricket coaches use and why. In-depth, semi-structured interviews were conducted with ten cricket coaches followed by thematic analysis to interpret the data. Cricket coaches used a mixture of Training and Playing Form activities, with net-based activities the most common. Regardless of the type of practice, the use of various specialised equipment was also prevalent. Developing game awareness and technical skill were the main practice objectives noted by coaches. Various external and internal factors were also suggested to impact on the development and implementation of practice environments. Findings provide novel insights into how and why coaches operationalise their practice (design) in ways which are perhaps incongruent with recommendations in current literature.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2765-2773
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Sports Sciences
Volume38
Issue number24
Early online date29 Jul 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 16 Dec 2020

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