What does it mean to be a coach? How does phenomenology help us understand what coaching is about? This exciting episode focuses on uncovering the essences of sport coaching.

Additionally, we explore the different types of caring and how they manifest in a coaching context. And finally, we ask questions about what meaningful work might look like in coaching.

Dr Colum Cronin is Senior Lecturer in Sport Coaching and Physical Education at Liverpool John Moores University and serves as an associate editor for Sports Coaching Review. In his doctoral research, he drew on a phenomenological approach to explore the meaning of coaching. He has later used a range of qualitative methodologies and methods and his current research focuses on care in coaching.

Physical activity in later life is often promoted for its potential physical, psychological and social benefits for older adults. However, sometimes these programmes, despite good intentions, can perpetuate negative stereotypes about ageing and youthful ideas about good life. Have we forgot to ask old people themselves how and why they are (not) active?

As our guest explains, ageing is not only a physical and psychological phenomenon, but also a cultural phenomenon. Cultural narratives including ageing-as-decline, successful ageing and active ageing can have significant consequences on how we make meaning of later life.

In this episode, we ask critical questions about what is ageing, who is an older person, and what implications different physical activity campaigns for older adults might have.

Dr Adam Evans is currently an Associate Professor in Sociology of Sport at the Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sport (NEXS) at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. He is the current director of the Sport, Health and Innovation research group at NEXS, and is Editor in Chief of the European Journal for Sport and Society (www.tandfonline.com/toc/ress20/current). His research interests cohere around understanding the lived experiences of sport, physical activity amongst several groups, including older adults and those with specific health needs, together with work in swimming and aquatic activity.

We cannot create meaning out of nowhere, but we always depend on culture to provide us with a horizon of significance. But what kind of "thing" is culture?

Can we create a winning culture, a healthy culture, or meaningful culture around sport? Or are any attempts to manage culture simply colonialist projects that will inevitably marginalise and silence other meanings that are not part of the "official" narrative?

Dr Michael McDougall completed his PhD focused on a critical examination of organisational culture research in sport at Liverpool John Moores University and teaches psychology at Keystone College in the US. He is researching various topics including cultures in sport and organisational contexts, meaningful work, craftsmanship, and well-being.

What kind of being is the sporting human being? For Professor Gunnar Breivik, a human being is the homo movens and the homo ludens: a playful and active being that explores the world and its own possibilities. Our guest explains key ideas in Heidegger's work in Being and Time while also arguing that the ways of ‘worldmaking’ disclosed in sport are more ontologically diverse than Heidegger's classic text opened up for.

We explore the four constitutive relations identified by our guest (‘I-Me’, ‘I-You’, ‘I-Society’ and ‘I-Nature’) and their typical manifestations in sport.

And finally, we explore what kind of 'things' are 'meaning' and 'meaningful life' in Heidegger's work.

Gunnar Breivik is Professor Emeritus in Sport Social Sciences at the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences, where he was Rector of the School 1999-2005. His pioneering work in philosophy of sport over several decades has covered a range of areas including studies of intentionality, knowledge, skills, and other aspects of human experience and action in sport. Moreover, he has conducted many empirical studies in sport and physical activity from psychological and sociological perspectives, including studies on personality in high-risk sports.

What are the most interesting things in sedentary behaviour research at the moment?

Professor David Dunstan from the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute in Melbourne. His research focuses on the role of physical activity and sedentary behaviour in relation to chronic diseases.

Dr Amanda Rebar is senior lecturer at Central Queensland University, Australia and director of the Motivation of Health Behaviours (MoHB) Lab. She has experience providing evidence-based guidance for community-based programs with a focus on mental health and safety outcomes.

Dr Arto Pesola is working as research manager at Active Life Lab in South-Eastern University of Applied Sciences. He is researching health effects of sedentary behaviour and developing health technologies aiming at making life healthier - with less sitting. 

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This podcast episode is sponsored by Fibion Inc. | The New Gold Standard for Sedentary Behaviour and Physical Activity Monitoring

Learn more about Fibion: fibion.com/research
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What has the COVID-19 pandemic revealed about the role of sport in our lives? We will discuss how existential psychology can help us understand life and sport under the pandemic and what the pandemic has made us aware of about the human condition more generally. And what about applied sport psychology work with athletes these times? What have we learned? 

Our guest Dr Mark Nesti has pioneered the application of existential psychology in sport. He has recently stepped down as Reader in sport psychology at Liverpool John Moores University and is now working as a British Psychological Society Chartered sports psychologist with the first team players and staff at Yorkshire County Cricket club and Aston Villa.

Mark has written extensively on existential psychology, spirituality in sport, and applied work with elite and professional athletes. 

Are children experiencing meaningless PE? How can physical educators actively promote meaningful experiences in PE?  Déirdre Ní Chróinín and Tim Fletcher have spent several years on developing and implementing a framework called Learning About Meaningful Physical Education (LAMPE) which encourages teachers to prioritise meaningful experiences in physical education.

In this episode, we explore the theoretical underpinnings and research findings of the LAMPE project and reflect on how the idea of meaningfulness complements and extends other approaches to understanding experiences in PE and sport.

Dr Déirdre Ní Chróinín is a Senior Lecturer in physical education at Mary Immaculate College in Ireland, and Tim Fletcher is an Associate Professor in physical education pedagogy in the Department of Kinesiology at Brock University in Canada.

Information about this exciting work and other collaborators in the LAMPE project can be found at meaningfulpe.wordpress.com. And remember to follow them on Twitter: @meaningfulPE

Putting Nietzsche and sport together could seem like an odd pairing. However, our guest Yunus Tuncel argues that there are numerous dimensions that we find in Nietzsche’s work that can help us understand the value of sport in human life. From Nietzsche’s early writings on the Apollonian and Dionysian, to his philosophy of play and to the well-known contemplations on the overhuman, there are several inspirational elements in his work that can help us think about the role of sport in finding meaning in the world where God is Dead.   

The first part of our explorations provides an overview of Nietzsche's thought and then focuses on the Dionysian and the Apollonian forces and thinking about sport through them. Would Nietzsche think that contemporary (elite) sporting culture is going too much towards the Apollonian with our focus on quantifying and controlling everything? Nietzsche celebrated play as a spontaneous, creative and, in a good sense, purposeless and useless activity. Has sport gone too far off from play?

Dr Yunus Tuncel teaches Philosophy at The New School, New York, and in New York University’s Liberal Studies Programme. He is a co-founder of the Nietzsche Circle and a member of the Editorial Board of its journal The Agonist. Yunus is also the founder of Philomobile, which is a travel organisation offering trips to those interested in studying philosophy on the road (http://www.philomobile.com/).

Psychologists around the world are increasingly focused on questions about meaning. Are people living meaningful lives? What makes work meaningful? What is the role of meaning in psychological health? However, few psychologists of sport have focused their efforts on the question of meaning in sport. One exception is Dr Matteo Luzzeri whose PhD research focused on understanding meaning and its relationship to identity, commitment, and burnout in sport.

This first episode with Matteo focuses on the concepts of meaning in life, meaning in work and meaning in sport. What do we know about sources of meaning in peoples’ lives? Can we make a case for domain-specific meaning in sport? Can we apply the meaningful work literature to studying meaningful sport? What about age-related differences in meaning in sport? And what are the possible threats to meaningful engagement in sport?

Dr Matteo Luzzeri defended his doctoral dissertation titled “The effects of a meaning-oriented online writing intervention on commitment, stress, and burnout in collegiate athletes” at Florida State University in early 2020. He has also validated (together with G. M. Chow) the Meaning in Sport Questionnaire (MSQ) recently published in Psychology of Sport and Exercise.

Matteo is also a professional waterskier and a coach, and hosts a highly popular waterskiing podcast which you can access at http://www.thewaterskipodcast.com/

This is the first part of our discussions with Dr Emily Ryall where we explore foundational questions about meaning of sport in human life. Sport is clearly trivial: we cannot survive without food and shelter, but we can easily survive without sport. Why, then, are so many people across the globe passionately involved in sport? And if sport is trivial, should we take it seriously, and how seriously? What happens if we take sport too seriously?

And finally, we delve to critiques of elite sport and the role of sport/exercise technology in possibly distorting our relationship with movement and our bodies.

Dr Emily Ryall is a reader in Applied Philosophy at the University of Gloucestershire who enjoys wrestling with the deep and complex questions about the role of sport in human life. She has written on a range of philosophical and ethical questions in sport and enjoys teaching in relation to these issues as well as philosophy of science, critical thinking and the logic of arguments.

Sira Karvinen currently works at the Gerontology Research Center, University of Jyväskylä, Finland. She is a postdoctoral researcher in a EsmiRs-study - Risk of metabolic dysfunction in middle aged women: systemic and intracrine oestrogen and microRNAs as mediating factors.

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This podcast episode is sponsored by Fibion Inc. | The New Gold Standard for Sedentary Behaviour and Physical Activity Monitoring

Learn more about Fibion: fibion.com/research
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Physical Activity Researcher Podcast have created a ‘Purchase Guide for Researchers: Accelerometer-based Activity Trackers’. You can download it from here.
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How can we use sociological theory to understand the social responses to Covid-19 pandemic especially in relation to exercise and health? What does the response to Covid-19 reveal about the social status of exercise? Is Covid-19 going to change our exercise and body culture more permanently, and if so, how? These and other questions addressed by two leading sociologists of sport, Drs Dominic Malcolm and Philippa Velija.

Dr Dominic Malcolm is a Reader in the Sociology of Sport in the School of Sport, Exercise, and Health Sciences at Loughborough University. His recent research has focused on the intersections of sport, medicine, and health.

Dr Philippa Velija is an Associate Professor in the Sociology of Sport and Head of Education and Sociology at the School of Sport, Health, and Social sciences at Solent University. Her research focuses on issues of social justice and gender relations in sport.

The discussion draws from a recent commentary written by the guests. See: Malcolm, D., & Velija, P. (2020). COVID-19, Exercise and bodily self-control. Sociología del Deporte, 1(1), 29-34.

In this episode, Dr George Jennings shares his findings from case studies on adapted pedagogies under COVID-19 lockdowns in three martial arts environments in the UK.

George is a qualitative sociologist and a lecturer at Cardiff Metropolitan University. His research interest lies in the study of traditionalist alternative physical cultures including Eastern movement forms, martial arts, native games and folkloric dance.

[Note: This episode was recorded 30th of April 2020] 

Dr Blaise Collins is working as Medical Science Liaison Intern at Atlas Medical in Texas U.S.  He describes himself as highly motivated physiologist and educator responsible for the development of a novel tourniquet system in pigs, the creation of a health and wellness company, and mastery in the areas of cardiovascular physiology and regenerative medicine.
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This podcast episode is sponsored by Fibion Inc. | The New Gold Standard for Sedentary Behaviour and Physical Activity Monitoring

Learn more about Fibion: fibion.com/research
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Physical Activity Researcher Podcast have created a ‘Purchase Guide for Researchers: Accelerometer-based Activity Trackers’. You can download it from here.
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What are the most interesting advances in qualitative research in sports and physical activity science?

 

Dr Francesca Champ is a Lecturer in Psychology of Football at Liverpool John Moores University. Francesca has expertise in the psychological development of youth athletes, qualitative methods including ethnography, and the training and education pathways of sport psychologists.

 

Dr Gareth Wiltshire is a lecturer at Loughborough University. Gareth is a social scientist with broad interests related to the social determinants of health. His main research interests fall into three areas: exercise and health for organ transplant recipients; the social determinants of physical activity and health inequalities; advanced and innovative methodologies.

 

Dr Javier Monforte completed his PhD at the University of Valencia (Spain) and is member of the ECR Committee at the International Society of Qualitative Research in Sport and Exercise (twitter @QRSEsoc). Javier’s research addresses the role that physical activity plays in the lives of people with disabilities and chronic illnesses in society. His interests also lie in narrative psychology and new forms of thinking and doing research, such as postqualitative inquiry.

Dr Harri Piitulainen is working as Assistant Professor at Sport and Health Sciences at University of Jyväskylä and as a visiting professor at Department of Neuroscience and Biomedical Engineering at Aalto University, Espoo, Finland.

 

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This podcast episode is sponsored by Fibion Inc. | The New Gold Standard for Sedentary Behaviour and Physical Activity Monitoring

Learn more about Fibion: fibion.com/research
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Physical Activity Researcher Podcast have created a ‘Purchase Guide for Researchers: Accelerometer-based Activity Trackers’. You can download it from here.
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Weight loss in athletes and how to maintain muscle mass in the process

Dr Juha Hulmi is an associate professor in exercise physiology and science writer. He holds PhD in exercise physiology

Main research interests

  • Muscle hypertrophy
  • Muscle atrophy/wasting/cachexia
  • Sports nutrition
  • Exercise physiology
  • Muscle metabolism and signaling
  • Strength training
  • Muscle medicine
  • Weight loss / fitness

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This podcast episode is sponsored by Fibion Inc. | The New Gold Standard for Sedentary Behaviour and Physical Activity Monitoring

Learn more about Fibion: fibion.com/research
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Physical Activity Researcher Podcast have created a ‘Purchase Guide for Researchers: Accelerometer-based Activity Trackers’. You can download it from here.
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‘Human-computer interaction and interaction design for digital health and physical activity’

Dr Jan Smeddinck is working as Lecturer in Digital Health at Open Lab and at the School of Computing at Newcastle University, UK.

Prior he has spent one year as a postdoc visiting research scholar at the International Computer Science Institute (ICSI) in Berkeley and he retains an association with the TZI Digital Media Lab at the University of Bremen in Germany. He consults on games for health, game user research and digital education.

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This podcast episode is sponsored by Fibion Inc. | The New Gold Standard for Sedentary Behaviour and Physical Activity Monitoring

Learn more about Fibion: fibion.com/research
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Physical Activity Researcher Podcast have created a ‘Purchase Guide for Researchers: Accelerometer-based Activity Trackers’. You can download it from here.
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'The role of social stereotypes and social identity in motivation for physical activity'

Aïna Chalabaev is working as Associate Professor at University Grenoble Alpes, France. 

Her studies investigate the effects of social stereotypes on behaviors in the physical domain, with a particular focus on sex and aging stereotypes. They explore the extent to which differences in performance and physical activity according to sex and age may be socially constructed, beyond their physiological determinants.

The identification of the mechanisms (motivational, cognitive, affective, physiological) through which stereotypes may be incorporated, and of the strategies that may limit their influence, is examined within different contemporary socio-cognitive models, and notably stereotype threat theory, stereotype embodiment theory, achievement goals theory, and regulatory fit theory.

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This podcast episode is sponsored by Fibion Inc. | The New Gold Standard for Sedentary Behaviour and Physical Activity Monitoring

Learn more about Fibion: fibion.com/research
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Physical Activity Researcher Podcast have created a ‘Purchase Guide for Researchers: Accelerometer-based Activity Trackers’. You can download it from here.
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This is a short episode to introduce our new co-host Dr Noora Ronkainen.

Noora will be doing episodes related to human and social scientific approaches and also some special episodes about career development and mental health in academia as these are topic’s relevant to all that always do not receive the needed attention.

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