Navigating motherhood and the role of the head athletic trainer in the collegiate setting

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Bibliographic Details
Title translated into German:Mutterschaft steuern und die Rolle der Cheftrainer im College Setting
Author:Mazerolle, Stephanie M.; Eason, Christianne M.
Published in:Journal of athletic training
Published:51 (2016), 7, S. 566-575, Lit.
Format: Publications (Database SPOLIT)
Publication Type: Journal article
Media type: Electronic resource (online) Print resource
ISSN:1062-6050, 0160-8320, 1938-162X
Online Access:
Identification number:PU201610006920

Author's abstract

Context: Motherhood has been identified as a barrier to the head athletic trainer (AT) position. Role models have been cited as a possible facilitator for increasing the number of women who pursue and maintain this role in the collegiate setting.
Objective: To examine the experiences of female ATs balancing motherhood and head AT positions in the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division II and III and National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics settings.
Design: Qualitative study.
Setting: National Collegiate Athletic Association Divisions II and III and National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics.
Patients or Other Participants: A total of 22 female head ATs (average age = 40 ± 8 years) who were married with children completed our study. Our participants had been certified for 15.5 ± 7.5 years and in their current positions as head ATs for 9 ± 8 years.
Data Collection and Analysis: We conducted online interviews with all participants. Participants journaled their reflections on a series of open-ended questions pertaining to their experiences as head ATs. Data were analyzed following a general inductive approach. Credibility was confirmed through peer review and researcher triangulation.
Results: We identified 3 major contributors to work-life conflict. Two speak to organizational influences on conflict: work demands and time of year. The role of motherhood, which was more of a personal contributor, also precipitated conflict for our ATs. Four themes emerged as work-life balance facilitators: planning, attitude and perspective, support networks, and workplace integration. Support was defined at both the personal and professional levels.
Conclusions: In terms of the organization, our participants juggled long work hours, travel, and administrative tasks. Individually and socioculturally, they overcame their guilt and their need to be present and an active part of the parenting process. These mothers demonstrated the ability to cope with their demanding roles as both moms and head ATs.