'n Sportkundige perspektief op die professionalisering van sportafrigting in die Republiek van Suid–Afrika
Van Zijl, Johanna Catharina
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INTRODUCTION - Sport plays an important role in modern society. Developments in the fields of science and technology influence sport. A modern society without sport is inconceivable. Sports coaching can make an important contribution to the meaningful progress of sport because it is an important component of the development of an participation in sport. Participation and achievement in sport in South Africa are at present being adversely influenced by certain restraining factors. Coaching, as an important component of sport, is also adversely affected. RESTRICTIONS IN SOUTH AFRICAN SPORT - A certain number of restrictions are being encountered in the following areas: - It is doubtful whether the full sporting potential of the South African population, regarding the quality and quantity of participation, has been fully developed. Effective guidance must contribute in such a way that the involvement of a large number of sports producers and participants as well as the financial expenditure on sport is justified. - Research on sports coaching in South Africa does not comply with the necessary requirements that would enable effective sports training and coaching. - Ignorance regarding sports coaching has already caused much damage to sport and sports coaching. - The provision of sports coaching to the heterogeneous South African population has up to now been inadequate and a major part of the population has been deprived of essential guidance and services. - Because South Africa does not have an effective infrastructure for sports coaching, participants, coaches and coaching have all been adversely affected. - The characteristics of sport are not adequately emphasised in coaching: Consequently the value of sport, especially regarding participation at top level (both amateur and professional) has been distorted. - Sports coaches in South Africa experience problems with job security and continuity. Because success is only measured in terms of performance, and performance is subjected to fluctuation, coaching as a career is presented in a poor light. Promising coaches often disappear from the coaching scene because insufficient provision is made for job security, continuity and possibilities in South African Sport. Because winning has been over emphasised at the expense of a long term policy for coaching, the quality of sport, especially on the general participation level has incurred incalculable damage. As opposed to other fields of human endeavour in society, sport occupies a relatively low position on the list of priorities. This necessitates a professional approach so that the limited means and man power may be employed effectively. PURPOSE OF THE STUDY - The purpose of this study is to ascertain whether the professionalisation of coaching will lead to greater participation and better performances and to determine to what extent professionalisation in coaching is extant and what measures can be taken to develop and enhance it. The following points are important regarding the professionalisation of coaching - the control and co-ordination of coaching; - the training of coaches; - the various organisations responsible for coaching, as well as the levels of participation; - the position of the coach regarding job opportunities, job security, remuneration and recognition in the community as well as establishing professional status for the coach; - the economic implications of sports coaching; - the publication and distribution of research results so - that these can be practically implemented. In this connection sport science and coaching in South Africa and leading overseas sporting countries were investigated. The data obtained was evaluated in order to determine to what extent it •would influence the presentation of a •training, administrative and organisational model for sports coaching practice in South Africa. METHOD OF THE STUDY - Most of the information regarding the situation abroad was obtained by means of personal interviews. For this purpose ten different leading sporting countries •have been visited. a) The Middle East, Israel b) The American Continent, Canada, The United States of America c) The British Isles, England d) Western Europe, Belgium, The Federal Republic of West Germany, France, The Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland. Relevant information contained in available literature regarding the above-mentioned countries was also used. Information regarding other overseas countries was obtained from literature available and from correspondence. This was applicable to: a) East European countries, The German Democratic Republic, The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics b) Australasia, Australia. Crucial and key information regarding the position of sports coaching in South Africa and the information that could be identified from the reports of the HSRC sports research (1982) was evaluated to determine its usefulness in reaching logical conclusions and workable proposals that could eminate from these findings. Much information was gleaned from the themes that eventually formed the basis of the HSRC research study. The necessary information concerning the situation of sports science and the professionalisation of coaching in the Republic of South Africa, unavailable in the HSRC reports was acquired by means of questionnaires, personal interviews and available literature. THE CHARACTERISTICS OF SPORT - The essential characteristics of sport were examined to determine in what light sport, in a professionalised coaching practice, should be presented. The following matters were identified: - Sport is based on the kinetic function of the human being and finds its destination in the social function. - Being an activity in its own right, sport has its own structure and value and the development thereof is possible and essential. - In the process of the development of sport, professional sport has come to the fore as a normal historical process. - Professional sport also embodies the essential characteristics of sport. - Play and competition (achievement) are both components of sport. Competition in sport increases performance. - The rules of sport do not necessarily comply with the accepted ethical norms of everyday life. - Sport strives after fairness. - Sport demands preparation and effort. - Sport must be constructive and worthy of mankind. - Sport is essential and consequently coaches are indispensable. SPORT IN SOCIETY - The following factors concerning the place of sport in society must be considered: - Sport is an integral part of society. - The need for sport in the community will probably increase. - An indisputable link exists between sport and culture. - Sport enriches human culture. - Sport as a form of culture must always be regarded as such in any evaluation and priority rating. - Sport is viewed differently in different societies. - Sport changes as the structures of society fluctuate. - Sport entails financial implications and involves many people in its presentation. The science of sport, the coach, sports coaching and the participant, as key concepts have been defined. IMPLICATIONS OF PROFESSIONALISATION FOR COACHING - The implications of professionalisation in coaching have been investigated. Certain aspects in this regard have been singled out. Professions are acknowledged in society because of the particular knowledge the participants have. People practising professions are committed to render services to the community. Professions were established because of the need for specialized services in the community. Professional conduct as implied in the usual professions means that a person must act according to the norms and standards of his profession in a responsible and judicious manner. He must do this according to the demands made on him by his profession. - Professionalism in sport generally means that a participant directly or indirectly receives financial or material benefits by practising sport. - Financial gain serves as motivation for better performances, but is not the only manner of motivation. - The emphasis that is placed on success and performance together with the financial implications involved, leads to a distortion of sports values and also causes a dilemma for the coach. Professionalisation may also mean that sportsmen strive for the improvement of achievements and that they can learn from one another. - In this study the concept "professionalisation" has the same meaning as that of occupations. This does not only mean that coaching is undertaken for remuneration (although this can be the result of professionalisation), but with the professionalisation of coaching an attempt is made to enhance the esteem of coaching as a career on both part-time and full-time levels. Furthermore it means that certain norms and standards as applied to relevant aspects such as control, training, coaching opportunities, job protection and security must be determined and maintained. Very little of the original meaning of amateurism has been retained because sportsmen cannot perform at top level without some assistance, financially or otherwise. The commercialisation of sport has meant that money has become available for sport. Amateur sportsmen also benefit from this. In a professionalized coaching system attention must be paid to the following aspects: - Coaching is a necessity in the present day society. - In sports coaching two distinct sections, a general and specific section can be distinguished. - The sports coach must take into consideration a variety of aspects that are important in coaching. - A number of coaching principles must be kept in mind by the coach. These include methodological and biomechanical principles. The coach must possess particular qualities, be adequately trained and an acceptable vocational milieu must be established for him. Factors that can adversely influence his productivity must be eliminated. The provision of sports coaching must. be subjected to specific principles. The coach also must direct his coaching according to certain principles. During the study, matters indicative of a professionalised coaching approach were examined. In this respect sports science, the control and co-ordination of coaching, the training of coaches, coaching opportunities, the financing of coaching and the distribution of relevant information received attention. CONCLUSION - The following aspects can be emphasized: - Sports research is undertaken to lesser or greater degree in different overseas sporting countries. Physiological research in sport dominates other aspects. Sports research is also undertaken in South Africa, but exhibits deficiencies in certain areas. - The countries involved in this study have a central governing body that controls and co-ordinates coaching, while sporting bodies make a special contribution. South Africa, however, does not have an equivalent central governing body at its disposal. - In various countries the training of coaches has to a large extent been organised and developed to a high level of efficiency. Provision has been made for formal and informal training. Training is undertaken on a fulltime and part-time basis. Formal and non-formal training are undertaken in South Africa, but are not up to standard. - In certain overseas countries special practice and training opportunities and facilities for sportsmen at school level and post-school level, are available. Opportunities for intensive training and coaching in South Africa are almost non-existent. - The career possibilities and job security of overseas coaches are far better than that of their South African counterparts. In different countries many coaches are involved in coaching, whilst a shortage of trained coaches is experienced in South Africa. - Coaching is in most countries to a large extent financed by the state, although sufficient funds are not always available. - Information concerning sport is made available to coaches in various ways but is not always effective. - Demographic variables in South Africa and the heterogenity of the South African population present particular problems that up to now have not received sufficient attention. PROPOSALS - In order to realise the advantages that the professionalisation of coaching can offer, certain matters must receive attention. Eminating from the study it is obvious that the following proposals are accountable. A central -governing body must control and co-ordinate coaching at a national level. The distinctiveness of different types of sport as well as their structures must at all times be taken into account. A constitution for such a body has been presented. The training of coaches must be done in a scientific manner. Provision must be made for both formal and informal training. Training consists of two components, namely, general training and specific training. General training can be offered simultaneously to coaches of different types of sport. Sport institutions at South African universities must present this type of training. Specific coaching must be the responsibility of coaching committees of national sporting bodies. Different levels of training are possible, namely, a preparatory level, levels one to three and a level for professional coaches for those coaches who render services to sport on a fulltime and part-time basis. Adequate training opportunities must be created for sportsmen. Coaching at school level must receive special attention. Both participation and performance-are important. A scheme to identify a talent for sport must be initiated. Information derived from anthropometry, physiology, psychology and sociology must be used for this purpose. Special coaching opportunities must also be provided for at a post-school level. This must comply with the heterogeneous nature of the South African population. Demographic variables must also be taken into account. Adequate career opportunities and job security must be provided to ensure that the most capable persons are available for coaching; provision must be made for both full-time and part-time coaches. Their needs must be considered and their responsibilities must be stipulated. Research in sport must be undertaken in an orderly and scientific manner. Research needs must be identified so that research will benefit sports coaching. Coaching must be financed in a realistic manner. In addition to financial support by the authorities, funds must be generated by other means. These funds can be obtained from sponsors, affiliation fees, registration fees and course fees. Information to coaches must be made available effectively. For this purpose a South African coaching magazine, informative brochures, the media and symposia must be utilized.
- Humanities