Table 2

Main codes and related quotes on the dimension ‘coaches’ impact on injury prevention’

Higher-order themeLower-order theme
Style of coaching and communication attempt to ensure player safetyDevelopment of culture‘This year, we’ve tried to make it more open. “Right, this is what we think, what do the players think?” We’re trying to make it more open, a bit more transparent. It’s not such a closed shop anymore. It’s not just what the coach says, goes. It’s trying to get everybody better at making decisions, particular when managing load’.
Effects of coaching style‘It’s important to listen to the player. Even if somebody is struggling, there’s things you can do. You don’t have to not train. You can still do things at 60%, you can work on skills, you can do some shooting. You don’t have to be sprinting and fatiguing and so, I think listening to the player among other [things] can minimise injuries’.
Organisation of internal power‘As I say to them all the time, [some of the players] have more experience than we do. One of them has played in one of the biggest clubs in the world and had been to an Olympics and a World Cup. So, why not try and take some of his knowledge out’.
Injury prevention needs to be age-specificCommunication difference between social groups‘With some of the younger guys, there’s certain things you don’t want to be doing with them. It’s probably more of an arm around them and here’s what we should do. We’re trying to just explain more to the younger guys as much as to why we’re doing things. Obviously still valuing their opinion, but they tend not to say much’.
Experience and social hierarchy‘The elite athletes and [senior players] will demand more information. “Ok, I’m injured, what am I supposed to do about it?” They drive the standards. The coach or the manager can put out an aspirational standard, but it’s actually the players that drive it’.
Excessive demands placed on youth‘If you’re working with younger players, a lot of them aren’t going to have the necessary experience and knowledge to know when enough is enough or how far can push themselves and would tend to over push themselves. At this stage, it’s the responsibility of the coach and [senior players] to give them the information and to recognise when players have pushed themselves too far or potentially could’.