Campus Location

Abilene Campus (Residential)

Date of Award


Document Type




Degree Name

Master of Arts

Committee Chair or Primary Advisor

J. D. Wallace

Second Committee Member or Secondary Advisor

Joseph Cardot

Third Committee Member or Committee Reader

Jonathan W. Camp


Through the use of the self-determination theory (SDT), developed by Edward L. Deci and Richard M. Ryan (2000), this study examined the various coaching styles and the relationship between both coaches’ and athletes’ identity. Thirty-two head coaches and 202 athletes from universities and colleges were surveyed. Coaches were matched with their athletes, producing 28 unique pairings. The first research question tested for coaching styles and how they connect to motivations. The second research question explored the coaching styles and how they relate to athletes’ motivations. A hypothesis examined differences between coaches’ reported coaching styles and their athletes’ needs. Results found that both coaches and athletes reported more internal motivations related to their needs and styles. Related factors found a significant difference between coaches’ competence and autonomy and athletes’ competence and autonomy. Implications for the athlete-coach relationship, their communication, and SDT in sports are discussed.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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