The Power of Groups in Youth Sport

The Power of Groups in Youth Sport

1st Edition - February 15, 2020

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  • Editors: Mark Bruner, Mark Eys, Luc Martin
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780128163368
  • eBook ISBN: 9780128172629

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Focused on understanding the key underlying group processes that contribute to youth sport experiences, The Power of Groups in Youth Sport provides an innovative and expansive overview of the research in group dynamics within youth sports. The first section of the book examines topics relating to forming and structuring groups, including team selection, athlete socialization, normative expectations, roles, coach and athlete leadership, social identity, and more.  The second section reviews concepts associated with group functioning and management, such as cohesion, subgroups, motivational climate, teamwork, and team building. This book concludes with a series of chapters focused on specific developmental considerations in youth sports that are often overlooked in group dynamics research including parental involvement, bullying and hazing, mental health, ,and disability and accessibility.

Key Features

  • Synthesizes the research of group dynamics within the context of youth sport
  • Highlights how groups form and function
  • Discusses the role of parents and peers on youth sport experiences and development
  • Suggests ways to advance the field of group dynamics in youth sports


Academic researchers working in the fields of applied group/organizational psychology, sport/exercise psychology, and developmental psychology; upper undergrad and grad students in group dynamics, sport/exercise psychology, social psychology, and applied developmental psychology

Table of Contents

  • I Creating and Structuring the Team

    1. Group Formation--Team Member Selection and Socialization

    Mark W. Bruner, Luc J. Martin, Mark A. Eys, Colin McLaren

    2. Group Norms in Youth Sport

    Alyson J. Crozier, Alex J. Benson

    3. Role Involvement in Youth Sport Teams

    Mark Eys, Michael Godfrey, Jeemin Kim

    4. Coaching Behaviors and Team Constructs in Youth Sport: A Transformational Leadership Perspective

    Sarah Lawrason, Jennifer Turnnidge, Jean Cote

    5. Athlete Leadership in Youth Sport

    Todd M. Loughead, Katherine E. Hirsch, Matthieu M. Boisvert, Christopher Maechel

    6. A Social Identity Approach to Enhancing Youth Development and Sport Participation

    Mark W. Bruner, Jordan Sutcliffe, Jordan Herbison, Luc J. Martin

    II Group Functioning and Management

    7. Come Together: Cohesion in Youth Sport

    Kevin S. Spink

    8. Subgroups in the Context of Youth Sport

    Luc J. Martin, Cailie McGuire, Madison Robertson, Kelsey Saizew

    9. Motivational Climate in Youth Sport Groups

    Chris G. Harwood, Sam N. Thrower

    10. Team Building in Youth Sport

    Lea-Cathrin Dohme, Jordan S. Lefebvre, Gordon A. Bloom

    11. Teamwork in Youth Sport

    Desmond McEwan, Mark R. Beauchamp

    12. Organizational Culture and Group Dynamics in Yout Sport

    III Developmental Considerations

    13. Peer Influence and Youth Development

    Karl Erickson, Emily Wright, Jill Kochanek, Matthew Vierimaa

    14. Parent Involvement in Youth Sport: Developmental Considerations Regarding Children, Adolescents, and Emerging Adults

    Travis E. Dorsch, Sam N. Thrower, Katie Lowe

    15. Bullying in Youth Sports Environments

    Samuel Kim, Wendy Craig

    16. Group Dynamics and Mental Health in Organized Youth Sports

    Stewart A. Vella, Sarah K. Liddle, Matthew Vierimaa, M. Blair Evans

    17. Peers and Groups in Disability Sport

    M. Blair Evans, Scott Graupensperger, Kelly P. Arbour-Nicitopoulos

    18. Conclusion: Developmental Considerations and Future Directions

Product details

  • No. of pages: 372
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Academic Press 2020
  • Published: February 15, 2020
  • Imprint: Academic Press
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780128163368
  • eBook ISBN: 9780128172629

About the Editors

Mark Bruner

Mark Bruner - Canada Research Chair in Youth Development through Sport and Physical Activity; Professor in the School of Physical and Health Education at Nipissing University. Dr. Bruner’s research program investigates group dynamics and psychosocial development in youth sport and physical activity settings. He has published research in leading journals in group dynamics (e.g.Group Dynamics: Theory, Research, and Practice) sport and exercise psychology (e.g. Psychology of Sport and Exercise) and adolescence (e.g. Journal of Youth and Adolescence). Dr. Bruner has served as a sport psychology consultant with elite youth and university sport teams and is a learning facilitator for the Coaching Association of Canada.

Affiliations and Expertise

School of Physical and Health Education, Nipissing University, North Bay, ON, Canada

Mark Eys

Mark Eys - Professor, Department of Kinesiology/Physical Education and Psychology, Wilfrid Laurier University, a former Canada Research Chair (2009-2019) and currently holds a Laurier Research Chair in Group Dynamics and Physical Activity. His current research interests include role perceptions in interactive groups, the measurement and correlates of cohesion, and the use of social influence to affect exercise behavior. Dr. Eys has published over 100 academic journal articles, 26 chapters, and two books including Group Dynamics in Sport (4th edition; co-authored), and Group Dynamics in Exercise and Sport Psychology (2nd edition; co-edited).

Affiliations and Expertise

Departments of Kinesiology/Physical Education and Psychology, Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, ON, Canada

Luc Martin

Luc Martin - Associate Professor, School of Kinesiology and Health Studies, Queen’s University. Dr. Martin’s research interests lie in the general area of team dynamics, with a specific focus on topics such as cohesion, social identity, team building, and subgroups/cliques. Although much of his research resides in the context of sport, he is also interested in other high performance groups such as military and surgical teams. He serves on the editorial boards for several top sport psychology journals (e.g., Psychology of Sport and Exercise, Journal of Applied Sport Psychology) and has consulting experience with athletes and teams ranging from developmental to elite levels of competition.

Affiliations and Expertise

School of Kinesiology and Health Studies, Queen’s University, Kingston, ON, Canada

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