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An Ethnography of the Ecology of Applied Sport Psychology Practice in English Professional Youth Football

Charnock, L (2023) An Ethnography of the Ecology of Applied Sport Psychology Practice in English Professional Youth Football. Doctoral thesis, Liverpool John Moores University.

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The thesis outlines a research project that was undertaken by a practitioner-researcher operating in an elite youth academy full-time in a professional football club. The author conducted an ethnography to critically explore the role and function of an applied sport psychology practitioner in a Category 1 Premier League academy. Throughout the PhD research, the practitioner-researcher was responsible for the delivery of a psychological development programme to youth athletes aspiring to become professional footballers. The data on which the thesis was based was drawn from multiple methods including observation, field notes, individual interviews, and focus groups. The incredibly complex role of the practitioner-researcher in the professional football club is outlined and an authentic account of their day-to-day existence in the environment is provided. Key events over a longitudinal period are discussed to inform an ecological approach to sport psychology provision in the football academy. The research was conducted via a critical lens in which the research not only described experiences as a practitioner-research but ultimately helped to inform a ecologically informed approach to psychology services at the football club. The thesis aimed to close the ‘gap’ between theory and practice and provide a more realistic and authentic picture of applied sport psychology practice at the coalface in a professional football club. The thesis provides insight into the importance of successfully gaining entry into elite football clubs and how micropolitical literacy is necessary to practice effectively in such settings. Furthermore, the preparedness, professional training and supervision of trainees is discussed to better prepare young practitioners seeking to work in the world of football.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: psychology; sport psychology; youth development; football; practitioner-researcher
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GV Recreation Leisure > GV561 Sports
Divisions: Sport & Exercise Sciences
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 09 Jan 2024 09:35
Last Modified: 09 Jan 2024 09:35
Supervisors: Littlewood, M
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/21856
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