Positive youth development, sport and communities: Research trends and future directions

Evan Webb

The University of Ottawa, Canada

Citation

Webb, E. (2016). Positive youth development, sport and communities: Research trends and future directions. International Journal of Sport Psychology, 47(2), 165-186. doi:10.7352/IJSP.2016.47.165

Abstract

This article discusses and critiques recent research trends within the study of positive youth development (PYD) through sport in addition to proposing directions for future study. Specifically, it is suggested that future work in PYD through sport delve into its potential application to the study of community development. First this article explores early work providing the theoretical background for PYD followed by a discussion of sport psychology’s adoption of PYD concepts. Recent PYD research is then examined suggesting strong evidence supporting the enhancement of life skills through sport contingent on an appropriate set of contextual factors and coach/leader strategies being in place. Support for the enhancement of the 5Cs through sport is less consistent. Several steps are suggested to help substantiate the connection between PYD and community development through empirical research.

Keywords: Assets, Community, Life skills, Recreation, Review


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