Applied Research Conference: Shaping the future of Coaching - Confirmed Workshops

Session 1

1. Developing creative learning environments
Facilitators: Dr Alex Twitchen, Open University

This workshop will present the findings from a study involving developing football coaches. It will illustrate the example of a randomly assigned constraints based learning activity and give attendees the opportunity to design their own practice on similar principles. There will be a stimulus video showing this activity being undertaken in a community environment by a group of developing grassroots football coaches, highlighting the application of the research principles.  The workshop is designed to introduce the research and the findings in an accessible manner, then give the attendees an opportunity to have a go at the activity themselves and to show how this research has been applied in a real environment.  

2. #stargazing – transformational leadership in netball
Facilitators: Dr Anita Navin, University of Gloucestershire and Dr Don Vinson, University of Worcester

This collaborative action research investigation applies Transformational Leadership (TFL) within the Severn Stars Super league netball club.  This project examines the extent to which the co-founding Director (Dr Navin) can enhance the TFL behaviours evident within the club through collaborative consultation and culture change. This ‘pop up university’ will provide an introduction to Transformational Leadership and Appreciative Inquiry and provide an overview of the Severn Stars journey so far and the Leadership Project to date.  Delegates will have the opportunity to work in groups on scenarios identifying key prominent tensions with the scenarios and creating potential solutions, as well as group presentations and discussion surrounding practical/real life world problems. The seminar will be summarised with key themes and a brief look at the future directions of Transformational Leadership within the Stars.          

3. Supporting participant and coach development through positive psychology: insights for sports coaches and coach developers
Facilitators: Dr Abbe Brady, St Mary’s University

This workshop will share new ideas and applications from positive psychology which have particular value for sports coaches and coach developers. Delegates will move around in a dynamic world café mode to share the big ideas, stimulating resources and real world applications of four key topics in positive psychology including: character strengths, positive emotions, gratitude and appreciative reflection.  As well as sharing easy to digest visual representations of key concepts in each area, to help ground the ideas in day to day practices linked to coaching challenges, contemporary real world applications are drawn from varied sports and international contexts through narrative stories. In engaging with each of the four central topics coaches and coach developers are prompted to consider how the ideas could be used for a, their own personal devel-opment and b, the development of their participants (i.e. athletes / coaches). This ses-sion is intended to be of particular interest to coaches and coach developers who are keen to embrace new ideas to accentuate the positive and support the holistic devel-opment of their participants. 

4. How much do you really know about your learners? Using a customised learning needs analysis tool to support coach development
Facilitators: Kelly Brown, UK Coaching and Martin Wilson, Cricket Coach

This interactive workshop explores how insight paves the way for a truly learner-centred approach to learning. Learning is often designed and delivered by experts in the learning field, with little consideration to the individual learner. UK Coaching has gained fascinating insight, through the development of a bespoke learning needs anal-ysis tool, into learning design which truly meets the needs of learners nationally. Dur-ing this workshop, participants will explore the learning needs analysis tool and bring to life how insight and learning departments can work closely together to benefit the learner, and how insight can assist learning to be ahead of the curve in meeting the needs of our sector. How much do you really know about your learners?

Session 2

1.Increasing your confidence to deliver to disabled people
Facilitators: Elliott Johnson and Chloe Studley, English Federation of Disability Sport

This is a two-part session presenting the latest EFDS research around deliverers experiences and reactions of providing activity for disabled people combined with a practical example of how to improve confidence using Sainsbury’s Active Kids for All Inclusive Community Training. EFDS will provide a taster of the Sainsbury’s Active Kids for All Community Training as an example of basic training that can improve provider’s knowledge of disability and simple adaptations that can be made to their activity to ensure disabled people can be included.

2. Deliver fun and engaging sessions
Facilitators: Ceris Anderson and Rus Smith, StreetGames

In this workshop the findings from in-depth research in relation to young people’s attitudes, motivations, behaviours and engagement in sport and physical activity will be explored, with illustrations of how this insight has been applied to develop new training workshops for community coaches, leaders and volunteers. It will also share information about how some of the coaches, leaders and volunteers went on to apply their learning 'on the ground'. The session will include a practical element with examples of what sorts of information and activities are included with some of the activator workshops, sharing some real life study examples. Attendees will come away from the session with a clear understanding around what motivates young people to take part in sport and stay involved, together with some practical examples of how coaches and leaders can help them to do this.

3. Collaborative coaching with allied health professionals
Facilitators: Anna Pettican and Jake Turner, Sport for Confidence

Sport for Confidence is a unique social enterprise in the UK, which forms partnerships between sports coaches, allied health professionals, leisure centres and sports clubs.  This workshop details Sport for Confidence’s distinctly occupational approach to coaching, achieved through mentoring by occupational therapists, which enables our coaches to develop their skills and experience in creating personalised, accessible and inclusive sports opportunities that are aligned with national strategy.  Work to evi-dence the occupational outcomes achieved from our approach to coaching has to date privileged the voices and experiences of those that participate, in the form of case-studies.  Additionally, an economic evaluation has been undertaken, which compares the cost of participation in Sport for Confidence with the ongoing health and social care costs for those participants with significant support needs.  Both forms of evalua-tion will be discussed within the workshop, which will conclude with the organisation’s onward plans for research and development.   

4. Flipping learning design: using insight to create a meaningful learner journey
Facilitators: Mark Scott, UK Coaching, Andy Oates and Richard Holmes, The Albion Foundation

Through the eyes of individual coaches on their journey through a level 2 multi-skills coaching award, this workshop will explore how the insight and learning team at UK Coaching developed and used a joined-up and innovative approach to qualification design, to meet the needs of the coaches, encouraging them to adopt a long-term ap-proach to learning. In this interactive workshop, participants will get an opportunity to investigate new ideas on how to design and deliver learning with coaches’ needs in mind, including how to engage learners beforehand, empower them during and sup-port them after and beyond. It will include a discussion of the evaluation methods that were used to monitor progress and informed the development of the whole learning design process. It will also include discussions about how leaners were engaged through informal learning communities.  

Session 3

1. Coach-athlete relationships: communication skills
Facilitators: Dean Clark, Hartpury University Centre, Ben Lovatt, the Training Effect, and Jon Woodward, Coaching Consultant 

This workshop will consider the inter-personal landscape from an innovative angle by drawing upon simple but powerful principles from the worlds of counselling and theatrical performance in order to allow delegates to consider the impact of their communication skills, listening strategies, self-presentation and choice of language in scenarios that can be placed into any form of coaching. The activities involved have been refined and reviewed over a number of years via the 'AURA' project. Workshop activities will aim to facilitate an 'Appreciative Understanding’ of effective communication whilst 'Researching Actively’ by allowing delegates to experience paired / small group practical exercises and access multi-media resources that will draw out themes and support discussions amongst practitioners from a broad range of coaching contexts.

2. I learned to play again
Facilitators: Richard Cheetham MBE, University of Winchester 

This workshop is designed to highlight how coach education can influence both coaches and participants, based on the findings from an intervention study ‘Impact of a 'play' based on child and youth sport coach’s continuing professional development. The rationale behind the research was to emphasise the importance of incorporating play at all levels of sport participation. The key outcomes of the workshop include: 

  • Influence on coach education of experiential learning opportunities
  • Importance of play
  • Learner empathy and how this influences coaches’ delivery
  • Creating authentic learning experiences for coaches 

3. UK Coaching Talent and Performance Melting Pots: sharing insight from across the coaching ecosystem
Facilitators: Chris Chapman and Nick Levett, UK Coaching

This workshop will explore the findings of the UK Coaching Talent and Performance Melting Pots; sharing interesting insight from academics, pathway leads, coaching system builders and coaches about entry and transition points for talented athletes. 

The session will be interactive as we share the ideas from the coaching ecosystem and will provide a great opportunity for further input from attendees. The workshop will be of particular interest to coach developers and system builders.

4. How much do you really know about your learners? Using a customised learning needs analysis tool to support coach development
Facilitators: Kelly Brown, UK Coaching and Martin Wilson, Cricket Coach

This interactive workshop explores how insight paves the way for a truly learner-centred approach to learning. Learning is often designed and delivered by experts in the learning field, with little consideration to the individual learner. UK Coaching has gained fascinating insight, through the development of a bespoke learning needs anal-ysis tool, into learning design which truly meets the needs of learners nationally. Dur-ing this workshop, participants will explore the learning needs analysis tool and bring to life how insight and learning departments can work closely together to benefit the learner, and how insight can assist learning to be ahead of the curve in meeting the needs of our sector. How much do you really know about your learners?

Session 4

1.  What does quality look like in supportive relationships with young people? Facilitators: Pippa Knott, Centre for Youth Impact

The workshop will draw on findings from a research and learning project that the Centre for Youth Impact team is currently delivering with providers of Talent Match, a Big Lottery-funded employability programme. The workshop will be creative, interactive and dialogic, focusing on questions such as: What is a developmental relationship? How do you establish one? What components of the relationship should be core, and what should be flexible? What do these look like in practice? Participants will leave more able to locate their experiences and roles in an understanding of quality in developmental relationships with young people; inspired and with practical tools to reflect differently on how they can improve the relationships for which they are responsible in their roles.  

2. Understanding the impact of coaching on participants
Hosted by: Ann Marie Bunyan and Lisa Whitaker, UK Coaching
Facilitators: Julian North, Sergio Lara-Bercial, and Dr AJ Rankin-Wright, Leeds Beckett University
Including guest speakers from participating sports: Phil Gordos, Manchester Magic; Dylan Clayton, British Cycling; and Nathan Jones, England Netball

The positive impact of sport and physical activity on participants is well recognised. Research has shown that people become more active, fitter, healthier and more confident through participation in sport and physical activity.  Research has also shown that those who receive coaching in sport and physical activity report better physical or mental health than those who do not.  However, the relationship between coaching, participation in sport and physical activity, and individual outcomes is less clear.  Leeds Beckett University has been commissioned by UK Coaching to undertake a three-year longitudinal study to explore the impact of coaching on participants. The research includes over 50 participants across 11 sports, and explores physical and psychological outcomes, as well as wider individual, and social and community influence and change.  This workshop will present the early findings from the study and will include the views and experiences of some of those engaged in the research.

3.How to design surveys people want to take
Facilitators: Alex Wheatley, Lightspeed

This session will explore how to get good data by knowing how to ask good questions. Beginning with the building blocks of how to narrate and pitch your content, to the specifics of how to leverage technology and structure questions, the session will teach attendees how to put the participant at the heart of the experience. After leaving the session participants should be equipped to create surveys that people enjoy, trust and ultimately give meaningful answers too. This is an interactive session that will give participants the opportunity to take part in challenges and tasks which will be both engaging and insightful.

4. Flipping learning design: using insight to create a meaningful learner journey
Facilitators: Mark Scott, UK Coaching, Andy Oates and Richard Holmes, The Albion Foundation

Through the eyes of individual coaches on their journey through a level 2 multi-skills coaching award, this workshop will explore how the insight and learning team at UK Coaching developed and used a joined-up and innovative approach to qualification design, to meet the needs of the coaches, encouraging them to adopt a long-term ap-proach to learning. In this interactive workshop, participants will get an opportunity to investigate new ideas on how to design and deliver learning with coaches’ needs in mind, including how to engage learners beforehand, empower them during and sup-port them after and beyond. It will include a discussion of the evaluation methods that were used to monitor progress and informed the development of the whole learning design process. It will also include discussions about how leaners were engaged through informal learning communities.

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