A qualitative investigation of coaches’ doping confrontation efficacy beliefs

Ian Boardley, Jonathan Grix, Nikos Ntoumanis, Alan Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
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Objectives: To investigate the nature of doping confrontation efficacy (DCE) beliefs – as well as their antecedents and outcomes – through a qualitative examination of Sullivan, Feltz, LaForge-MacKenzie, and Hwang’s (2015) DCE model with high-level technical and strength and conditioning (S&C) coaches from athletics and rugby union. Design: Qualitative, descriptive. Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 21 coaches (nmale = 15, nfemale = 6; ntechnical = 11, nS&C = 10; nathletics = 5, nrugby = 13, nrugby & athletics = 3), working at a regional, national, or international level in athletics, rugby, or both sports. Study data were analyzed deductively using content analysis techniques. Results: Data analysis supported the relevance of all five dimensions of DCE (i.e., personal resources, initiation, legitimacy, intimacy, and expected outcomes) to coaching practice in athletics and rugby, identifying key potential antecedents (e.g., coach education) and outcomes (e.g., likelihood of confronting athletes on doping-related issues) of coach DCE beliefs relevant to one or more of the DCE sub-dimensions. Deficits in coaches’ anti-doping knowledge were also identified, supporting the need for improved anti-doping education for coaches. Conclusion: By conducting the first qualitative examination of DCE beliefs, we enriched understanding of the DCE model and identified a range of possible antecedents and outcomes of DCE beliefs in technical and S&C coaches. Based on the results of this study, recommendations are posed for revising and expanding the DCE model. Practical recommendations are also offered for coach education.
Original languageEnglish
Article number101576
Number of pages9
JournalPsychology of Sport and Exercise
Early online date13 Aug 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2019


  • Performance-enhancing drugs
  • Semi-structured interviews
  • Coach behavior
  • Coach-athlete relationship
  • Coaching efficacy


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