Enhancing Parental Support through Parent-Education Programs in Youth Sport: A Systematic Review

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Parent-education programs in youth sport appear to provide an appropriate avenue to facilitate healthy parental involvement, enhance positive parental support, and help to relieve stressors placed on parents, coaches, and youth athletes. However, little is known about the efficacy, design, and evaluation methods utilised in parent-education programs in the youth sport context. The aims of the present systematic review were to examine: (1) the outcomes of parent-education programs which target psychosocial parental support; (2) the theoretical underpinnings of parent-education programs; and (3) measures utilised to evaluate parent-education programs in youth sport. A total of 12 articles met the inclusion criteria. All five quantitative studies yielded significant results. All three qualitative studies reported improvements in parents’ knowledge and skills. Only one mixed-methods study reported a significant result, however, qualitative data suggested positive changes in parent-athlete relationships. An examination of underlying theoretical frameworks revealed five studies (42%) explicitly stated how theory informed their interventions. Finally, there was an absence of sport-specific measures utilised to evaluate changes in parents’ behaviour and involvement. Future researchers should consider adopting behaviour change theories when designing and implementing parent-education programs, and seek to utilise validated sport-specific measures to examine changes in parents’ behaviours within the sporting context.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-28
Number of pages28
JournalInternational Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology
Early online date7 Nov 2021
Publication statusPublished online - 7 Nov 2021

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  • Youth sport
  • parent-education
  • education-programs
  • parental support
  • program evaluation


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