This chapter presents a review of published research on youth sport policy, focusing specifically on the representation of coaches in this literature and the policies that are examined. Comprehensive searching of relevant academic journals identified a total of 81 articles on the formation and content of youth sport policies that had been published across a 20-year period. While 41 of these articles included some mention of coaches or coaching, there have been very few studies that focus to any great extent on the role or representation of coaches in youth sport policy making. Similarly, a more in-depth review of research on youth sport policies across four areas – school sport and physical activity, community-based participation, welfare, and elite sport and events – gives almost no indication of coaches having an active role in the development of national policies. Where coaches are highlighted as a focus within youth sport policies, this tends to be in terms of increasing professionalisation and regulation especially in relation to child protection and safeguarding. The chapter concludes by highlighting some concerns with regard to these policy trends, and also identifies the need for further research specifically on the role and engagement of coaches in implementation of youth sport policies.
- Youth Sport