Allen, J. B., & Howe, B. L. (1998). Player ability, coach feedback, and female adolescent athletes' perceived competence and satisfaction. Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 20, 280-299.

This study examined the relationship between athlete ability and coach feedback with perceived competence and satisfaction among female adolescent athletes. Field hockey players (N = 143) reported their perceptions of coaches' use of feedback, their own playing competence, and satisfaction with the coach and team involvement. Coaches' ratings of athlete ability were obtained.

The higher a player's ability and the more frequent coach feedback, the greater the relationship with perceived competence and player satisfaction. High levels of perceived competence were related to higher ability, more frequent praise and information, and less encouragement and corrective information. Frequent corrective coaching behaviors of skill errors were related to lower perceptions of competence. Encouragement most likely was interpreted as helping behaviors, and more of it indicated lower levels of perceived competence and ability.

Implication. Coaches should minimize negative feedback (corrective) behaviors and avoid encouragement of a helping nature when working with adolescent females. Positive feedback behaviors are likely to be more effective and create better perceptions of confidence.

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