The specificity of the coach-athlete relationship in Italy

In Italy there is still a craftsmanship conception of high-level sport particularly true in individual sports. In most cases, the development and success of an athlete is based on a deep collaborative relationship with his/her coach. It is not uncommon that the coach is the husband of the athlete or the parent (father/mother). It’s obvious that this system is subject to all interference that are typical of the dual relationships.

The psychological components of each of these relationships have unbelievable significance, because the training is to build situations with predetermined levels of stress that the athlete must successfully deal to improve in his/her performances.

In this context, the coaches have a reduced exchange of ideas and discussion with other colleagues and the use of innovations produced by the sports science depends only on their curiosity and desire to upgrade. The limitation of this approach lies not only in the limited use of the contributions of science by the coaches but also the failure of researchers to listen and understand what are the needs and demands of the coaches.

In other words, there is need to talk together, to share ideas, to criticize each other in a constructive way and to build work plans based on collaboration.

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