Psycho-Physical Dimensions of Coaching Female Athletes in Teacher Training Colleges in Central Region of Kenya
Ndambiri, Richard Karani
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Female athletes have a unique way of responding to coaching behaviour. In addition, there are physical and psychological factors that influence the coaching of female athletes. The purpose of this study was, therefore, to assess the psycho- physical dimensions of coaching female athletes in teacher training colleges in central region of Kenya. The study assessed the extent to which the concern for body shape, the coach athlete relationship and coach leadership behaviour influences coaching of female athletes in teacher training colleges in central region of Kenya. The study further assessed other psycho- physical factors that influence female athletes’ participation in training activities in teacher training colleges in central region of Kenya with variables being, fear of strenuous exercises, fear of injuries resulting from training, academic demands, motivation using verbal reinforcement and freedom to choose the mode of training. The target population for the study comprised female athletes in certificate and diploma teacher training colleges in central region of Kenya. The sample size was obtained using stratified random sampling procedure. The teacher training colleges were stratified into two strata; certificate teacher training colleges and diploma teacher training college. Simple random sampling technique was used to select 50% certificate teacher training colleges. Since there was only one diploma teacher training college, it was purposively selected. A proportion of 50% of female athletes from each of the colleges was then selected using simple random sampling technique. The study selected 444 (21.6%) respondents from the two randomly selected certificate teacher colleges and the one diploma training college. The study used the questionnaire as the main instrument for data collection. The Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) was used to code and organize the data. The data were summarized into descriptive statistics of frequencies and percentages. The results were presented in tables. The hypotheses were tested using chi- square (χ2) and Wilcoxon signed ranks test at significance level of 0.05. The study results showed that the female athletes involvement in training activities is influenced by the concern for body shape, coach leadership behaviour and coach athlete relationship. The study results also revealed that female athletes differ in their preference for male or female coaches and youthful or elderly coaches. The fear of strenuous exercises prescribed by the coach, fear of injuries, academic demands, freedom to choose the mode of training and motivation using verbal reinforcement were all found to influence female athletes’ participation in training activities. It is therefore recommended that there should be expansion of awareness and education on benefits of physical activities to female athletes, training of female athletes by coaches who understand female athletes’ physical and psychological needs, having an assistant female coach when a male coach is coaching female athletes as well as addressing the psycho-physical factors influencing coaching of female athletes. The study recommends further research in order to gain a deeper insight on factors influencing coaching of female athletes.