Communication is one of the most important functions of management. Coaches of team and individual sports should know how to communicate successfully with athletes and assistants in order to maximize individual and team performance. A lack of communication means problems in coordination, cohesion and cooperation among the group. The coach,acting like the transmitter, should find the most appropriate ways to send its messages to the receivers, athletes and assistants. Effective communication between coaches and athletes in practice, before, during and after the game is a crucial factor and could affect positively or negatively team and individual performance. This research, based on review of literature and questionnaires, indicates thecommunication barriers among coaches and athletes, defines basic communication principles, and suggests methods of improving communication. The results and conclusions of this research are important for coaches, who coach and lead athletes and wish to have an effective and fruitful communication style.
Communication is the transfer of information in the form of an understandable message througha channel from a sender (coach) to others (athletes, personnel). Communication is the exchange of information, thoughts, ideas, or emotions among two or more people. Successful communication also means that the message should not only be transmitted, but also appropriately decoded (Kanelopoulos, 1990). Communication is an important factor of cohesion of any group of people which works togetherattempting to achieve common objectives. Effective communication is a prerequisite for group coordination, the development of good personal relationships and trust within the team and the creation of a positive environment around and within the team. Effective communication among group members leads the team effort to the achievement of its goals. On the other hand, any lack of communication usuallyleads to bad cooperation and coordination and finally confusion among team members. In fact, communication is necessary for all team functions and has been called the life-blood, or the neural system of any organization (Himstreet, 1995). Communication is correlated to effectiveness and efficiency of any team function, through its informational, motivational, evaluative and emotive role.Himstreet (1995) stated that the communication process could exist on four different levels: the inner-personal, the interpersonal, the group and the organizational level.
Since communication is a complicated process, researchers from various organizations have developed a variety of unique methods to study the construction. Such methods are activity sampling, sociograms, eco-analysis and the fleschindex in addition to the popular questionnaires, interviews, experimental designs and observation, which are used also in other areas (Aldag and Stearns, 1987).
Coaching is a very important profession, especially when you have to help athletes to enjoy mastering new skills, competing with others, and to feel good about them. Successful coaches not only should have the proper technique, knowledgeor skills of their sport, but also they should know how to teach these skills to athletes. The coach’s success and team performance depends, to a large extent, on his or her ability to communicate effectively with the athletes. The basketball coach, as the leader of a group of people, encodes and sends messages to players and assistants, in order to affect their behavior.
The communicationprocess involves four different parts:
1. (1) Sender: also referred as the transmitter, is the person who leads the communication process. For the purpose of this paper the coach will be considered as the sender. By giving directions and making suggestions the coach sends its ideas to athletes, personnel and assistants during practices and games.
2. (2) Messages: usually take the form of...