MetadataShow full item record
AbstractUK sprint coaches' employment of common racial stereotypes in explaining the success of Black and White sprinters was studied. It was hypothesised that the success of Black individuals would be attributed to innate genetic factors; whereas the success of White individuals would be attributed to socioeconomic advantages, intelligence, and hard work. Thirty-one sprint coaches voluntarily participated in success attribution exercises. A two-way between subjects design was used, with scaled item survey questionnaires, based upon photo elicitation, and subsequent statistical analysis via Mann-Whitney tests and Spearman's correlation. Qualitative data was collected, via a one-to-one interview design (open-ended and semi-structured), with subsequent inductive content analysis. Quantitative results reveal no significant difference between the scoring of Black and White photograph conditions, and a positive correlation between the comparative scoring of eight stereotypical factors (r =0.994, N =8, P= 0.001). The only statistically significant difference between individual factors is for longer limbs, with coaches scoring this as contributing more to the success of the pictured Black athlete (U =54.000, N1 =16, N2 =15, P =0.008, two tailed). Qualitative results indicate that most coaches adopt a biological determinist attitude, with genetic factors implicated as associated with success, to a greater extent than developmental factors. Several unprompted statements reveal direct racial stereotypes. Generally the hypotheses are not supported quantitatively. However, specific aspects do partly provide support, and there is a tendency to score the Black athlete more highly across all stereotypes, possibly indicating that coaches believe Black athletes to be more suited to sprinting. Qualitative results indicate that sprint coaches may be susceptible to the employment of natural ability stereotypes because of an over emphasis on biological determinism, and a lack of recognition for less immediately apparent developmental factors. Several comments evidencing the use of situated racial stereotypes in sprint coaching lend support to the hypotheses. Reassuring evidence has been gained that UK sprint coaches do not widely employ stereotypes in attributing differently the success of Black and White athletes. However, there is sufficient evidence of susceptibility and replication, to necessitate continued vigilance. The interdisciplinary and multi-method approach used is deemed to have provided a broad and deep view of the problem, representing a contribution to a neglected area of study. A theoretical model of stereotype influences in sprinting, and recommendations for both coaching and coach education are presented.
CitationTurner, D. (2004) 'False start? UK sprint coaches and black/white stereotypes'. MSc by Research thesis. University of Luton.
PublisherUniversity of Bedfordshire
TypeThesis or dissertation
DescriptionA thesis submitted to the University of Luton for the degree of Master of Science by Research
The following license files are associated with this item: