Coaching with Latour in the sociomateriality of sport: A cartography for practice



Maclean J & Allen J (2022) Coaching with Latour in the sociomateriality of sport: A cartography for practice. Sociology of Sport Journal.

While there is increasing recognition that sport is sociomaterial, little is known about what this means for an analysis of coaching practice. This paper develops a cartography of coaching based on an actor-network theory ethnography of two volunteer football coaches’ practices in Scotland. A sociomaterial analysis generates anecdotes that are reordered into five parts: 1. moving from the eleven-a-side game towards a field of practice, 2. delegation, 3. quasi-object, 4. interruptions, and 5. manufacturing. Each part is accompanied with an analytical move inspired by Latourian actor-network theory. Coaching is conceptualised as a field of practice resting on three propositions. The first proposition is that coaches intervene by fabricating passages in practices which are always under construction. The second proposition is that materials and materiality shape practices in ways which can make players more, or less, disciplined. And the third proposition is for a local and situated sociomaterial competence where nonhumans are matters of concern. Coaching with Latour paves the way for a new space in the sociology of sport for studies dedicated to the sociomateriality of sport.

Latour; actor-network theory; cartography; coaching practice; sociomateriality of sport

Output Status: Forthcoming/Available Online

Sociology of Sport Journal

StatusIn Press
FundersEconomic and Social Research Council
Publication date online03/08/2022
Date accepted by journal09/06/2022

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Dr Jordan Maclean

Dr Jordan Maclean

Research Assistant, Institute for Social Marketing