The Confidence Myth

The narrative around confidence and females lacking confidence in coaching is often mentioned.

However, contrary to belief, most active female coaches who responded to Sport Ireland’s Women in Coaching survey said they had moderate to high levels of confidence in their ability to coach. 

Based on their response to confidence levels, respondents were asked to explain the reasons for their rating. Five key themes emerged that influenced respondents’ confidence levels including:

  • The level of knowledge and skills they had.
  • The level of feedback they received from athletes, parents, and other coaches.
  • Their achievements, triumphs, and successes.
  • Areas for development in their coaching abilities.
  • The level of experience they had i.e., seasoned, or new coach.

In summary, coaches in general are confident in their coaching ability, but feel a lack of confidence when confronted by male administrators or other coaches. 

These points are important to note in order to support or influence if organisations are to be successful in retaining female coaches in their sport.

A swim coach instructs a group of female swimmers in a pool