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On the Practical Epistemology of Sport Coaches
Grasping a Tennis Coach's Knowledge World
Sports science in these years has seen a great variety of approaches that all hope can contribute to strengthen coaches' performance. Practice without scientific supervision often leaves physical education scholars uncomfortable in an important sense. This is surprising as the knowledge of sports science is usually viewed by high-performance coaches as too technical and non-applicable to the actual sport setting. Bridging the gap between sports science and coaching requires a better understanding of the essence of a coach's practical knowledge which is understudied in nowadays academic research of physical education. For theoreticians claim coaches' practice-based experience is highly personal and context specific and thus can not be justified into scientific generalization pursue. This study argues that a coach's practice-based experience can be classified into explicit knowledge and tacit knowledge. The aim of this study is to contribute to clarity about the ingredient and the resource of a coach's explicit and tacit knowledge. Through phenomenological reflection self-narration, co-narration and anthropological thick description, this study tries to disclose the knowledge a professional tennis coach actually does and learns that makes up his practice. These several ways of bounding coaching knowledge are closely linked to generate a more specific and relevant epistemology of coaches' practical knowledge.
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