Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

Scott M. Ronspies


The purpose of this study was to determine if there is a correlation between a coach's coaching style and team cohesion for high school student-athletes in different sports. A secondary purpose of this study was to examine if there was a difference between a coach's perceived coaching style and their student-athlete's perception. Methods: 20 male student-athletes and four coaches of three different sports (baseball, track/field, and tennis) participated in the study. Eligible participants were given consent/assent forms based on their age at the first meeting. At the second meeting the forms were returned and participants were given questionnaires based on what group they belonged to (student-athlete or coach). Participants were instructed on how to fill out the questionnaires and to turn them in at the next meeting. At the next meeting all questionnaires were received. Results: The coaching styles of social support, training and instruction, and democratic coaching significantly correlated to social cohesion and training and instruction was the only coaching style that significantly correlated to task cohesion. The same results were found for the baseball team. In regards to the difference between perceived coaching styles by the coaches and the athletes, there was no significant difference between perceived styles between the two groups. Conclusion: When comparing coaching styles with social cohesion, training and instruction, social support, and democratic coaching were the only styles found to significantly correlate with team cohesion. Only training and instruction correlated with task cohesion and furthermore, both student-athlete and coach, accurately perceived the coaching styles used. In conclusion, this study found that training and instruction, democratic coaching, and social support significantly correlated with social cohesion, training and instruction significantly correlated with task cohesion, and student-athletes and coaches had similar perceptions of coaching styles used.