Centre for Human Performance

Understanding and supporting parent clean sport behaviours through an exploration of the sporting system

Recognising the important role parents can play in clean sport, this project explores the barriers and enablers of parent clean sport behaviours present throughout the sporting system.

Understanding and supporting parent clean sport behaviours through an exploration of the sporting system

the challenge


International and national anti-doping agencies have begun to implement parent-focused anti-doping interventions within their clean sport provision. However, research has not kept pace with the design, delivery, and implementation of these programmes. Thus, the rapid development and diffusion of such interventions that are not evidence-informed globally may impede the feasibility and effectiveness of parent-focused clean sport interventions. This project aims to investigate the barriers and enablers of parent clean sport behaviour and develop an understanding of the system in which parents are situated, to inform the implementation of targeted and tailored parent-focused clean sport interventions.

The Approach

Using the Behaviour Change Wheel (Mitchie, van Stralen & West, 2011), as a meta-theory to understand behaviours, and support the implementation of evidence-based interventions, the aim of this project will be achieved through the following objectives:

  1. Undertake a behavioural diagnosis with parents, athletes, and coaches of athletics clubs in the UK to identify what would need to change to empower parents to perform clean sport behaviours.
  2. Undertake systemic consultations with key stakeholders from global organisations, who report that they currently provide parent-focused anti-doping provision (i.e., UK, USA, and Australia), to identify what intervention functions are feasible (e.g., education, environmental restructuring) for implementation.
  3. Provide recommendations for parent-focused clean sport interventions to share valuable insight with policymakers, education provides, and academics.

The impact

The project will end in December 2020.

Outputs and recognition

Outputs from the project are currently in development and under review. They will be made available on this website in due course.

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