Publication Year



Physical education, gender, athletics, coaching, social behavior


Gender and Sexuality | Health and Physical Education | Medicine and Health Sciences | Social and Behavioral Sciences | Sports Studies


The relationship between athlete and coach was examined, with respect to gender differences, in order to assess compatibility. Forty-seven undergraduate athletes participated in the study by completing the Leadership Scale for Sports (LSS), and an adapted Jourard Self-Disclosure Questionnaire (JSDQ). The LSS was administered in both of its forms--preferred and perceived coaching behavior, deriving five sub-scales to define specific characteristics of leadership behavior. The results indicated that female coaches were significantly more autocratic and less positively reinforcing, making them less desirable to the female athletes. The findings refuted the hypothesis that female athletes would be more highly compatible with female coaches; however, societal pressures from the patriarchal institution of athletics, as well as discrimination and lack of power and opportunity, can help to explain the disproportionate number of conservative traditional women coaches.

Department 1 Awarding Honors Status

Sociology and Anthropology