Investigating youth sport experiences through Project Score!


Youth sport is often cited as an avenue to support the growth of positive youth. Coaches have been found to be the most influential adult in a young person's life after that of a parent however many coaches are unsure of how to create positive sport experiences for youth. A recurring theme in this line of research is the need to train coaches to deliberately deliver themes relating to positive youth development (PYD) consistently in youth sport programs. Project SCORE! ( is a series of 10 lessons to help coaches integrate PYD into sport. The purpose of the current study was examine athlete experiences before and after the delivery of Project SCORE!. Four coaches delivered the program to their respective youth athletes (35 females; 13 males; Mage = 14.1) in the sports of hockey, volleyball, and rugby. The Youth Experiences Survey for Sport (YES-S; MacDonald et al., 2012) was administered. Results from the t-tests found significant differences in three of the five subscales (i.e., personal and social skills, goal setting, and initiative) through the use of Project SCORE!. These results have important implications related to coaching education and youth sport program delivery. Other implications and future research directions are discussed.

Acknowledgments: This project was supported by funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) and the Sport Participation Research Initiative (SPRI)