Professor Chris Cushion

  • Professor of Coaching & Pedagogy
  • Director of Sport Integration

After completing his undergraduate degree at Brunel University, Chris took up a PhD studentship and completed his PhD, an ethnography of the coaching process in elite youth football in 2001.

He was appointed a lecturing position in Sports Coaching and Performance, and progressed to Senior Research Lecturer in Coaching and Performance, being appointed as the pathway leader for the MSc in Sports Coaching. In 2006, Chris was appointed as Course Director for the BSc Sports Coaching and Teaching/Research Group Leader for Coaching at Leeds Metropolitan University.

Chris has a wide interest in coaching, being involved as an external reviewer in the UK Coaching Certificate endorsement process and a range of coaching related consultancy projects for both the public and private sector.

Within sport and industry, his clients include Chelsea F.C., Fulham F.C., Bath R.F.C., Tottenham Hotspur F.C., The Football Association, Sport Universal (Amisco) Sport Coach UK, Skills Active, Department of Culture, Media and Sport, OPTA, Elite Analysis, Sport Scientific and Sports Hub. Chris is actively involved in coaching practice, being a UEFA qualified football coach.

He has extensive experience in sport from participation to performance coaching in the UK and the United States, including 10 years work in professional youth football for a range of clubs. These included Norwich City F.C., Brentford F.C., Queens Park Rangers F. C. and Fulham F. C.

Chris has a range of research and teaching interests around the coaching process. These include

  • understanding the coaching process
  • coach education
  • learning and professional development
  • coach behaviour and learning environments
  • talent identification and performance analysis

He has, and continues to, supervise a number of postgraduate research projects in and around these areas.

Chris is an editorial board member and reviewer for a range of peer reviewed journals including

  • Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy (Editorial Board)
  • International Journal of Sport Science & Coaching (Editorial Board)
  • International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology
  • Psychology of Sport and Exercise
  • The Sport Psychologist
  • Journal of Sport Sciences
  • European Journal of Sport Psychology
  • the Journal of Applied Sport Psychology

Chris is also appointed as an External Examiner at the University of Worcester for their BSc Sports coaching degree and at Birmingham University for their MPhil in Coaching.

  • Cushion, C. J. (2006, September). Talent & Sport: Issues & Controversies. Paper presented at Researching Youth Sport Conference, Loughborough, UK.
  • Cushion, C. J., & Potrac P., (2006, May). Training sessions, games & cultural reproduction in top-level professional youth football. In C. Cushion & P. Potrac (Chairs), Qualitative insights into coaching practice. Lead paper presented at The 2nd International Conference for Qualitative Research in Sport & Exercise, Liverpool, UK.

Featured publications

  • Potrac, P. Jones, R. L., Cushion, C. J. (2007). Understanding power and the coach's role in Professional English soccer: A preliminary investigation of coach behaviour. Soccer & Scoiety, 8(1).
  • Wilson, M., Cushion, C. J., & Stevens, D. (2006). "Put me in coach… I'm better than you think I am!" : Perceptual Flexibility and Attributions in Youth Sport. International Journal of Sport Sciences and Coaching, 1(2), p. 149-161.
  • Trankle, P., & Cushion, C.J. (2006). Rethinking giftedness & talent in sport. Quest, 58(2), p.265-282.
  • Cushion C. J., & Jones, R. L. (2006). Power, discourse and symbolic violence in professional youth soccer: The case of Albion F.C. Sociology of Sport Journal, 23(2), p.142-161.
  • Nelson, L., & Cushion, C.J. (2006) Reflection in coach education: The case of the NGB coaching certificate. The Sport Psychologist, 20(2), p. 174-183.
  • Nelson, L. J., Cushion, C. J., & Potrac, P. (2006). Towards a clearer understanding of coach learning: Interrogating conceptualizations of coach education. International Journal of Sport Sciences and Coaching, 1(2), p.1-18.
  • Cushion, C.J., Armour, K. M., & Jones, R.L. (2006). Locating the Coaching Process in Practice: Models 'for' and 'of' Coaching. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, 11(1), p. 81-97.
  • Smith. M., & Cushion, C. J. (2006). An investigation of the in-game behaviours of professional, top-level youth soccer coaches. Journal of Sport Sciences, 24(4), p. 355-366.

Book Chapters

  • Jones, R.L., Potrac, P., Hussain, H. & Cushion, C. J. (2006). Exposure by association: Maintaining anonymity in autoethnographical research. In S. Fleming and F. Jordan (Eds), Ethical issues in leisure research. Eastbourne: Leisure Studies Association.
  • Cushion, C.J. (2006). Mentoring: Harnessing the power of experience. In R. Jones, (Ed.) The Sports Coach as Educator: Reconceptualising Sports Coaching. Oxford: Routledge.