Standard Article

Athletic Coaching

  1. Ronald E. Smith,
  2. Frank L. Smoll

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0090

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Smith, R. E. and Smoll, F. L. 2010. Athletic Coaching. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–2.

Author Information

  1. University of Washington

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


At all levels of sport, coaches function as educators, leaders, and strategists. In these roles, they can strongly influence the performance and personal development of the athletes with whom they come in contact. In the United States alone, an estimated 41 million children participate in nonschool programs, and another 6 to 7 million in interscholastic sports. Others participate at more elite levels, in intercollegiate, or professional sports. The teaching techniques coaches employ, the goal priorities they establish, the values they exhibit and reinforce, and the relationships they form with athletes in this important domain of athletic involvement have all been topics that have attracted the attention of psychological researchers.