Study on the variability of enthusiasm behaviour in different levels of practice

Por: Luís Sena Lino e M. Oliveira.

Athens 2004: Pre-olympic Congress

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Introduction

The analysis of the behaviour of teachers and coaches in situations of pedagogical interaction has revealed itself a decisive factor for understanding this type of interaction. In this context, one of the variables long associated with effective teaching is enthusiasm (Siedentop,1983). This study, therefore, has two aims: to analyse the variability of the
coaches’ enthusiasm behaviour when teaching, in two different levels of practice of swimming (learning and competition) and to relate that variability with different degrees of academic qualifications, thus determining the degree of satisfaction of the athletes, when faced with this type of behaviour.

Methods

The sample used consisted of four male coaches, two possessing a degree in higher education who worked with the competition level and two with not such a qualification that taught the learning level. As for the students, in a total of forty-two, eighteen were part of the competition group and twenty-four of the learning group. Each coach taught three classes that were videotaped with incorporated audio sound. An adapted observation system (Costa, 1988), which included ten categories of enthusiasm and four categories of non-enthusiasm, was used. Data was recorded using the event recording method. Intra-observer fidelity tests were performed and an index of 95% was obtained. To determine the athletes’ degree of satisfaction, a one-question questionnaire was used, together with a picture. Data was analysed statistically using a simple non-parametric sample variance analysis, by means of the Friedman test.

Results

Globally, results show that in the behaviour of the four coaches under study, the number of interventions of enthusiasm was superior to that of non-enthusiasm. Nevertheless, the difference between these two types of intervention was quite small for the coaches teaching the competition group. The application of the Friedman test led to the conclusion that there were no significant differences between the four coaches. In these circumstances, it seems that in the present study, the level of practice and academic qualifications of the coaches had no influence in their enthusiasm behaviour. On the other hand, it was possible to conclude that to a higher rate of enthusiasm behaviour corresponded a higher degree of satisfaction of the athletes. Nevertheless and despite this conclusion, enthusiasm alone cannot be seen as predictor of effective teaching.

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