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UK Coaching Team
Rapport Building and Communicating

Coach Communication in Boxing – Round 5: Coaching Identity

Infographics created from research developed in partnership with Amanda Coulson at Boxing England and Dr Kieran File at Warwick University to understand more about coach communication, applicable to combat sports and sports with time outs and breaks between rounds or games

Insight has highlighted some of the micro level features of talk that you can rely on to perform important functions in between rounds. We can also use these findings to consider what these choices signal at a broader level, particularly in relation to your coaching identity in these between-round talks.

Because there are many different ways of performing between-round talks, what do the strategies that you select suggest about the identity that you’re constructing in and through your talks with boxers?

Here are four often overlapping identities coaches appear to perform across the different stages of these between-round talks:

Coaches can move seamlessly from guardian to strategist or teacher to motivator. In fact, you might find yourself using all of the above identities during a single bout.

Combining relational and transactional strategies is an important aspect of effective leadership. It can help you to achieve your aims and empower the boxers to perform at their best.

Here are some examples of relational and transactional strategies:


In your own practice, what examples of relational and transactional strategies might you add to these lists?

Use this template to help you pull your thoughts together.



Reflecting on your own coaching identity, how do you combine relational and transactional strategies?

Do you notice a difference in your approach when under different types of pressure and working in different circumstances: Time, Type of Competition, Different boxers?

What impact do you think your different intervention strategies has on the boxers?


Interested in starting from the beginning?

The first resource in this series, Coach Communication in Boxing: Let’s Get Ready to Rumble, explores the research underpinning the infographic and includes a downloadable booklet containing practical strategies to maximise the impact of your communication.

Who is this research useful for?

This research was undertaken with and intended for boxing coaches, but a lot of the information and ideas are applicable to many coaches, working at multiple levels of performance and development pathways. It is especially relevant where the sport allows natural short breaks in play, creating opportunities for coach-athlete interaction.

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Related Resources

  • Coach Communication in Boxing – Round 4: Focus on Body Language

  • Your Coaching Philosophy: Ideas to Aid its Development

  • Understanding and Reflecting on Your Identity and Self-Concept


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