Replacing sports coaches seldom solves problems

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Washington, Sept 18 : Thinking of replacing the coach to improve team's performance while the season is underway? Avoid it, for a new study suggests that bringing in a new coach would rarely solve problems.

During the study, researchers from Mid Sweden University looked at the trend of hiring and firing coaches in the Swedish Elite Series ice-hockey league during the period 1975/76-2005/06.

They found that replacing the coach hardly solved the problem.

"The results of our study indicate rather clearly that it was a mistake to replace the coach in all of these cases," said Leif Arnesson at Mid Sweden University, one of the three researchers who carried out the study.

"The Study shows that replacing the coach seldom solves the problem, no matter when it is done.

"If you're thinking about getting a new coach, you should at least avoid making your move while the season is underway.

"A word of advice to those who are in charge of recruiting coaches is therefore: 'Don't replace the coach, at any rate if you have a good coach, if you're in the middle of the season, or if the team is in trouble,'" he added.

The study aimed at identifying the relationship between coach replacement and team performance and to investigate the effect of factors such as coaching ability, coaching experience, and time of replacement.

The findings are also generally applicable. The situation is roughly the same in all major team sports, including soccer.

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