Coaches’ perception of professional competence as a function of education and experience

Ana Sofia Figueiredo Santos, Isabel Ribeiro Mesquita


The aim of this study was to analyze coaches’ perception of professional competence as a function of experience and academic education. The sample consisted of 343 Portuguese coaches from different sport disciplines. A validated questionnaire was used to collect demographic data and data regarding the perception of professional competence. Exploratory factorial analysis and comparative inferential analysis by one-way ANOVA were used as statistical procedures. The results highlighted the wide range of competences necessary for an efficient coach. The answers provided by the coaches revealed 5 factors: planning; leadership and coach education; competition planning and orientation; personal competence, and training orientation. Although all these factors were at least classified as reasonably important, factors related to competition were considered to be the most important. Comparative analysis showed that professional experience and academic education had a different impact on the perceived importance of competence. More experienced coaches perceived competences related to planning, training orientation, and leadership and coach education to be more important than less experienced coaches. Coaches with higher education considered competences related to planning, leadership and coach education, training orientation and personal competence to be more important than undergraduate coaches.


Professional Competence; Professional experience; Academic education.


The abbreviated title of the journal is Rev. Bras. Cineantropom. Desempenho Hum, which should be used in bibliographies, footnotes and bibliographical references. E-ISSN 1980-0037, impressa ISSN 1415-8426, Florianópolis, Santa Catarina, Brazil. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.